IT is strange how the Unionists in general and Gordon Brown in particular always chant that Scotland is divided ("Scotland ‘at risk of becoming one of West’s most divided countries’", The Herald, February 21).

Where is the empirical evidence? Was it divided in 1955 when the Tories gained most votes? Or when Labour was the strongest party and the Tories had no MPs?

It is obvious it is only "divided" in the eyes of the Unionist parties when they are in the doldrums and the SNP has 80 per cent of the MPs at Westminster and forms the government at Holyrood. That is the result of the democratic vote of the people. Not everyone born alive is "either a little Liberal or Conservative", despite what Gilbert and Sullivan, who wrote before Labour was a party, said. One could even argue that the advent of Labour divided the country even more 100 years ago? Times change and generations change, yet Mr Brown is stuck in his past.

What is Mr Brown now? A political relic of Labour in Scotland and an advocate of a Union now unfit for purpose. He mirrors the demise of Labour in England, outfoxed by the Johnsonian Tories who played on the inner xenophobic fears and inner prejudices of the Labour "supporters" in the ‘red wall’, just as he was outfoxed by David Cameron in 2014 when he fronted the Vow and Mr Cameron proclaimed English Votes for English Laws.

Mr Brown self-typecasts in his pop-up histrionical stage performances as the sage elder statesman strutting with pronounced jaw in a melodramatic trance and utters nothing. He is the last remnant of a long-gone era in Scottish politics and of a Labour Party now reduced to the bottom rung here.

It is time for him to leave the stage like a fading actor in the silent movies, all gesture but no actual voice?

Scotland divided? Only in the eyes of the Unionist minority parties based in London.

John Edgar, Kilmaurs.

IT’S official then, a combination of the most right-wing Tory Government for a generation and a significant rise in support for Scottish independence have jointly inspired the Scottish media to engineer a resurrection of our own “big clunking fist”, Gordon Brown. Hailed as the man who questionably saved the “precious Union” in 2014 with the infamous pledge of increased powers for the Scottish Parliament, Mr Brown is being dusted down and prepared for another Operation Fear as the likelihood of independence becomes increasingly probable. Like a physical embodiment of Brigadoon, the former Prime Minister reappears like a shadow from the mists to spread his own idiosyncratic, doom-laden predictions for his homeland oblivious to the seismic changes on the Scottish political landscape but hoping to hog the limelight enough to appear to matter for one last time.

The poll that he conveniently commissioned seems to unearth the obvious – that Scots are divided over issues like Brexit and independence, and the highly dubious – that current divisions are the fault of the First Minister and the SNP. This would seem to fly in the face of short and long-term electoral history in Scotland but I’m certain that this will not deter Mr Brown from scapegoating those who espouse the cause of independence whilst ignoring the clear and present dangers for this country of remaining part of the UK.

Mr Brown is a political dinosaur who, it would appear from his self-indulgent ramblings in the Scottish Daily Mail last year, views a libertarian right-wing Conservative Government and all it represents, as a preferred option to what he describes as the evil of extreme nationalism. As a Prime Minister he was a notable and costly failure to the country's economy and political stability, ushering in a prolonged period of Tory austerity and constitutional disarray. The media should allow him to disappear from history with at least a shred of dignity and standing before he blunders on and cements his reputation as a national laughing stock. His time is over.

Owen Kelly, Stirling.

"LET the healing begin" uttered Boris Johnston on the steps of Downing Street following his successful "Get Brexit Done" election campaign and victory. But is there any evidence for his words to date? Has not the country become more polarised, the cracks deeper, the walls higher since December 13?

This division is entirely his responsibility of course – lies during the Brexit campaign, illegal proroguing of Parliament, the promise to die in a ditch, more lies during the election campaign, yet he has a huge majority in Parliament, many people voted for him. Why? Does the uncomfortable truth lie in the responses to Priti Patel's points-based immigration system? It seems to have liberated the voices of the xenophobes – "British jobs for British people" and "Foreign visitors should be charged for using our struggling NHS" are common messages spreading like a virus through social media. Are we a racist society at heart?

Paul Shaw, Dunblane.

Read more: Brown: Scotland ‘at risk of becoming one of West’s most divided countries’