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Nationalistic Rant for Today
Nationalistic Rant for Today
As a result of reading the wonderfully eloquent slightly_sexy8 I started browsing by location in the blogs, and what do I find? A map of Europe on which the UK is called 'England'!
Now, I understand that your average American is pretty vague about the geography and history of the world outside the US (no offence, but most are including your President), so I'll react reasonably calmly to it but this inaccuracy is guaranteed to annoy the vast majority of Scots (not to mention the Welsh!) So for the benefit of those who don't realise, a few selected educational snippets for you:
Our country is called the United Kingdom because it is comprised of 4 formerly separate (monarchic) countries: England, Scotland, Wales and the Northern Part of Ireland which was retained when the rest was granted independence.
Despite many wars, England never succeeded in conquering Scotland. Scotland only became part of the UK when an ill fated idea called the Darian Scheme (intending to create a trading route in Panama) bankrupted the country. Scotland agreed to sign the Act of Union in return for a lot of gold (the Darian Scheme was estimated to have lost a third of Scotland's entire wealth, not to mention thousands of lives). Note that prior to the Act of Union, Scotland and England had shared a monarch for some time, after the Scottish King James VI also became the English King James I due to succession.
Scotland now has it's own Parliament, which governs virtually all aspects of the country except for those which affect the UK as a whole, such as the military, foreign affairs, national taxation, etc. This was created in response to a fast growing desire for Scotland to be granted full independence.
The Scots have our own distinct identity and culture, and are fiercely protective of this. One thing guaranteed to upset us is refer to us as being English.
Scots have contributed more than our fair share of scientific creativity to the world. To give but a few examples the following were all invented by Scots: the bicycle, the pneumatic tyre, tarmac, the telephone, colour photography, the television, the microwave oven, golf, many aspects of banking, vacuum flasks, radar, ultrasound scanners, hypodermic syringes. Also, penicilin and chloroform were both discovered by Scots. More recent discoveries have included the MRI scanner, the first cloned sheep (called Dolly), and the first blue laser (soon to be found in the next generation of high definition DVD players).
Despite there not having been any wars between Scotland and England for over 200 years, there remains quite a strong undercurrent of anti-English feeling in Scotland. This is most commonly found in sport where many Scots openly admit to supporting 2 teams: Scotland and whoever are playing against England.
Ok, rant over (for now at least!)
9/7/2005 4:41 pm
Well, I did neglect to mention that football (that's soccer to you Americans who prefer inventing your own sports!) is our national sport. But given Scotland's record in recent memory this is perhaps understandable (and my memory is long).|
However tonight all that is forgotten as we won in Norway so our slim hopes of qualifying for the World Cup remain alive!
I have no idea what this comment has to do with anything really, but a) I've been in the pub all night, and b) I'm in a good mood, so stuff it, it's on here! No doubt the Northern Irish are equally happy tonight as well