Party News from the May 1968 issue of the Socialist Standard
The thistle is defined as a prickly plant with a purple flower. It is also the emblem of the Scottish National Party. However, Glasgow Branch of the SPGB think that another purple flower—the shrinking violet —would be more appropriate.
Over the years we have made strenuous efforts to get the SNP onto the platform with us in order to debate in public the respective viewpoints. This is easier said than done and so far these efforts have met with something less than success.
Just over a year ago we wrote once again to SNP headquarters in Glasgow challenging them to debate with us the proposition “Socialism or Nationalism?”. “Too busy” they replied. We then extended our challenge, through the correspondence columns of several Glasgow newspapers, to any SNP Branch in the west of Scotland. There were no takers, although we did get an unsigned abusive letter from one brave patriot.
In March of this year we challenged the Nationalist MP, Mrs. Ewing, and circularised copies of the letter to eleven national and local newspapers. From the Press—nothing. From Mrs. Ewing—another refusal. We thought our chance had come when the Chairman of the Eaglesham Branch of the SNP issued a public challenge to debate (Evening Times 4/3/68) to a local critic of the SNP. However, when we wrote asking for the same opportunity, it was “no dice”.
SNP members are often extremely vociferous at our outdoor propaganda meetings and even attempt to howl down our speakers, but meet in public, on equal terms, to have their case subjected to Socialist analysis, they definitely shrink from that.