Let’s cut Sadiq Khan some slack. In the first place, he is a London politician. Almost by definition, he is completely ignorant of Scottish politics. All he knows is what is fed to him by the British media. It would, therefore, be perfectly legitimate to say that he knows less than nothing. Because, to whatever limited extent he may have taken the slightest interest in Scotland, it is probable that he has been exposed only to the grotesque caricature presented by a journalistic clique that speaks only for the British establishment.
As if that wasn’t recipe enough for the embarrassing gaffe in which Khan basically branded half the Scottish electorate ‘racist’, bear in mind that he had ventured north from his London fastness at the invitation of British Labour in Scotland (BLiS). We have to assume that he was briefed by his hosts. Perhaps by the likes of Anas Sarwar. Which could hardly do other than add to his ignorance and would certainly help to explain the intemperate nature of his remarks. The combination of media misinformation and “Scottish Labour’s” bilious, intellect-crippling resentment of the SNP was always going to prove fatal to Mr Khan’s credibility, integrity and dignity.
Or maybe Sadiq Khan wasn’t briefed at all. Which would be a testament to the abysmal political ineptitude of BLiS.
Either way, Sadiq Khan truly knows not whereof he speaks. We might opine that he would, therefore, have been better advised to remain silent. But this fails to recognise that the ignorance which he exhibited extended to a perfect unawareness of his own ignorance. He assumed that he knew all he needed to know. It’s only Scotland, after all.
It may even be that Sadiq Khan has done us a favour; albeit unwittingly and inadvertently. His foolish remarks have served to remind everybody of the generalised ignorance of British politicians who presume to pontificate on Scotland’s politics. Something last demonstrated during the first independence referendum campaign. And the reaction provoked by his obnoxious comments has helped to throw a spotlight on the true inclusive nature of Scotland’s independence movement, with messages like the one above flooding social media.