Scotland is probably gone. Going into the EU referendum, neither the Conservative Party nor the Labour Party held any high ground north of the Solway Firth. The majority of Scots voted to remain in Europe, and it is within Europe that the Scots apparently wish to remain, even now. Scottish Nationalist Party leader Nicola Sturgeon has instructed her lawmakers to prepare for a referendum on a clean break for independence. The disaffection between the Scots and the English is regrettable, Sturgeon said, but it is “democratically unacceptable” for Scots to be taken out of Europe by those insufferable Sassenachs in Westminster.
More ominously, Sinn Fein’s Martin McGuinness, deputy first minister of Northern Ireland, is demanding a referendum, too. The majority in the Six Counties voted for the Remain side. The pro-Europe vote was not just confined to Ulster’s Catholic republican districts, either. “The British government now has no democratic mandate to represent the views of the North in any future negotiations with the European Union,” McGuinness proclaimed. “We are now in unchartered waters. Nobody really knows what is going to happen. The implications for all of us on the island of Ireland are absolutely massive.”
A less-than-cheery prognosis would seem to require that we soon may no longer refer to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, but rather to the United Kingdom of England and Probably Wales and Maybe County Down and Antrim and the Hill Country At the Top of Armagh between Tandagaree and Benburb.