STAN Grodynski (Letters, March 8) tells us that the current SNP leadership fiasco will not lead to a fall in support for independence.

It is obvious that his letter was written before the multiple pile-up car crash that was the STV "debate" ("Gloves are off as Yousaf gets lumps knocked out of him", The Herald, March 8) was aired: never in the history of the independence movement can so much damage have been done to the cause by so few in such a short time.

And even if Mr Grodynski is correct in his debatable assertion that the SNP and its leadership is of marginal relevance to approval for independence, he and your readers should remember that the Yes vote needs to go up, not just stay the minority view. Can anyone really see either Humza Yousaf or Kate Forbes or Ash Regan (don't giggle) adding significantly to the level of support achieved by Alex Salmond and held on to by Nicola Sturgeon?
Peter A Russell, Glasgow

One hour to destroy 16 years

IT only took one hour of television to destroy the 16 years of SNP rule in Scotland. None of the candidates is up to the job and neither was Nicola Sturgeon, who has left a huge mess for the next First Minister to inherit. The SNP Government might limp on though the partnership with the Greens is doomed, but three more years of this administration is going to put an almighty, if not terminal, strain on Scotland. What a difference an hour makes.
Dr Gerald Edwards, Glasgow

What happened to humility?

SO Kate Forbes has resisted the urge to show a bit of humility after her attacks ("Forbes stands by Yousaf criticism, saying SNP needs leader with 'guts'", heraldscotland, March 8).

Mercifully not being impacted by Christian belief, Wee Free or otherwise, I can only wonder if Ms Forbes's church uses a version of the Bible that has redacted all that gutless stuff about loving your neighbour and so and and behaving decently towards other people. Not being a SNP supporter I don't have a horse in this particular race, but I do wonder how many SNP supporters agree with Ms Forbes that having guts means acting as a verbal thug?
Alistair Richardson, Stirling

How could we trust them?

MY opinion after watching the shambolic Scottish leadership debate was not only what a trio of hypocrites are running for the leadership, but also how the SNP Government has been lying to the Scottish people. Over the last months and years we have been constantly told what a good job each of the candidates has been doing in government and how well the SNP Government has been doing with the economy, education and health.

However, during the debate each of the candidates, who were also members of the Cabinet, accused each other of being rubbish in the jobs they have done and how the economy, education and health were currently in fact in a poor way and being managed badly.

How can anyone now trust any of these candidates or the SNP Government?
Paul Lewis, Edinburgh

Indy doesn't depend on SNP

THE unedifying spectacle of the SNP leadership contest underlines the point I have been making in these pages for some years now. We should not depend on the SNP or any other political party to lead us to independence. The issue belongs – not to the SNP – but to the SN – the Scottish nation.

Politicians may be driven initially by campaigning zeal for a cause, but once elected and settled in office their job security and personal ambition eventually take precedence.

Of the three SNP contenders only Ash Regan seems to understand that it is not the duty of the First Minister to lead the nation to independence. We even had Humza Yousaf telling Kate Forbes that her religious views would turn people against support for independence.

If the SNP members were to elect Mickey Mouse as their new leader, my support for independence would be undiminished. The simple choice facing our Scottish nation is between asserting our right to elect the government of our choice or to continue to be governed by whatever politicians our southern neighbours impose on us.

Other small independent European nations manage to thrive and we should have the confidence to believe that we can manage our economy, health, education and international relations under a modern proportional electoral system.
Willie Maclean, Milngavie

Read more letters: Johnson & Co are turning our democracy into a pantomime

Awkward questions

SO Humza Yousaf has stated his Cabinet will be a balance of men and women ("Yousaf commits to following Sturgeon in having gender-balanced Cabinet", The Herald, March 8).

Those seem to be two argument-loaded statements these days. If (and I think Kate Forbes would be better suited to being Scotland’s next First Minister) Mr Yousaf gets his Cabinet of identifying men and women to all agree that they are actually men and women, do all his past disastrous decisions in government just go away?
Jamie Millar, Paisley

Unfair to ignore UK

I AM not a member of the SNP but feel impelled to respond to what might be called the “ugly face” of unionism from some of your correspondents.

Scotland’s NHS swims in the same austere seas and with the same pool of available staff as the rest of the UK, but Scotland has better staffing ratios (nurses, doctors, GPs and dentists), with better outcomes in general than other UK countries, and has had none of the serious health scandals registered in England. For this Humza Yousaf is discourteously condemned for his “dismal record” and for doing “nothing but harm” – this without context or a wider perspective.

Ian Balloch (Letters, March 8) expands the critique to include the whole gamut of Scottish government, again without context or comparison with the record of other UK regimes. Is Scottish policing worse than in England, or justice, or education (whose Pisa scores are slewed by substantial pupil absenteeism)? Drugs, absolutely, but it may now be in decline among the younger demographic in Scotland in comparison with elsewhere.
GR Weir, Ochiltree

Consider sins of the Tories

I COULD not agree more wholeheartedly with the letter (March 8) from David J Crawford about the state of our democracy. Yet Jill Stephenson and Alexander McKay (Letters, March 8) cannot even acknowledge the travesty that is politics as usual in London.

If they are genuine Conservatives they should at least acknowledge the capture of that party by the extreme right European Reform Group, the financial shenanigans of former PM Boris Johnson, money from the Russians, loans facilitated by the BBC chairman, party donors paying for extravagant and frankly tasteless interior decor, Mr Johnson knighting his concupiscent father, lying to the House of Commons; the list is endless.

It must be my age, but I can well remember when there were serious politicians on all sides of the House. It is frankly tragic that it has come to this.
Marjorie Thompson, Edinburgh

Read more letters: Scotland needs to get a grip and stand up for itself

Bus cuts are no surprise

THE SNP has managed to hide many issues facing Scotland with the Covid funding that came from Westminster. It is no surprise to me that bus services are facing cuts and price hikes now that the support grant to help bus companies is coming to an end ("Routes facing cuts and fares hike as bus support slashed", The Herald, March 8).

This is one of the many reasons that Scotland gets a larger Westminster grant per head than the rest of the UK. The rural areas need greater funding as there are fewer people, greater distances to cover and thereby higher costs.

Wouldn’t it be good if one of the candidates came out and told us how we as a separate nation would be able to fund these additional costs? There never seems to be an answer, just a plea to have faith. That doesn’t work with the majority of us who need to know that they will have a functioning transport system near them, not just in the central belt. Or are we to become second-class citizens?
Jane Lax, Aberlour

There are no fiscal transfers

I REFER to Guy Stenhouse's article ("Treatment of Kate Forbes by media and her party has been shameful", The Herald, March 8), in respect of "fiscal transfers". I would like to point out to him, and other Union-supporting correspondents, that the system doesn't work that way. There are no fiscal transfers between any UK economic regions.

Scotland's deficit comes from what it is charged, not such transfers.
Iain Cope, Glasgow

Read more letters: Why can't SNP candidates focus on the truly pressing matters?


Letters should not exceed 500 words. We reserve the right to edit submissions.