Saturday 5 April 2014


I was going to write something long and serious about Margo who died today.

But many other people have done a far better job that I would have; people who really knew her for the warm and lovely person that she was. People like Derek BatemanI briefly met only once in parliament and knew her only by reputation.

And what a reputation.

I can't say I always agreed with her, but honestly, who can say that of anyone? I don't always agree with myself, never mind anyone else.

I thought that Margo faced her illness with fortitude and good humour. I never heard about her moaning. She just got on with the hand she'd been dealt and worked at what she was good at. 

She knew that her health and her faculties would deteriorate over time, and she was as prepared for this as I suppose you ever can be. 

She knew too, that when the time came that it was too much for her and when she felt she could no longer face life, she could afford to take a plane to Zurich and pay the fee required to end her life legally.

So it was for other people who couldn't begin to consider affording that that she launched her bill to legalise limited euthanasia in Scotland. 

Patrick Harvie, her close friend, will now take that bill through parliament on her behalf. I wish it a speedy and successful passage.

It's incredibly sad that she won't be here to see independence. She has been, for a very very long time, one of the key players in making it possible.

So I feel reasonably confident in saying that Margo wouldn't have wanted a huge fuss and bother over her death. Rather she would just remind us, as she did last year and the year before... If we just convince one person each, we are home and dry.

Then, I suspect, she'd tell us to get out there and get on with it.

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