The lunacy of the Scottish Greens

This science-denying cult proved too extreme for even the SNP.

Malcolm Clark

Topics Politics UK

Want to read spiked ad-free? Become a spiked supporter.

When the Scottish National Party (SNP) cabinet brought their power-sharing agreement with the Scottish Greens to an end last week, ministers reportedly cheered and thumped the table with their fists.

The decision was clearly cathartic for a party that has grown increasingly sick of the ideological obsessions of the Greens. These may well be the same obsessions, from gender ideology to climate catastrophism, that gripped former SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon. But as the SNP slides down in the polls, members are increasingly desperate to dump the baggage of the past few years. Humza Yousaf, who resigned as first minister today, is also part of that baggage.

How things have changed. When Nicola Sturgeon brought the Greens into government in the Bute House Agreement in August 2021, the SNP seemed only too happy to be sharing power with these pseudo-progressives. Sturgeon and Green co-leaders Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater seemed to get along like a house on fire, running Scotland into the ground while barking at the rest of us about pronouns. The SNP also appeared to be fully on board with the green dream of turning Scotland into a vast peat bog where everyone is dirt poor, unemployed and limited to eating their own recycled bodily waste.

Perhaps Slater, Harvie and other greens would have succeeded in realising this grim vision of the future if they hadn’t become so obsessed with gender ideology. Not that this seemed to matter initially. At first, Britain’s liberal-left elites were so delighted at seeing the first Greens in government in the UK that they didn’t notice their swivel-eyed insanity whenever the scent of puberty blockers wafted near their nostrils.

Harvie was so extreme on the infamous Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill, which would have introduced gender self-ID, that he took to social media to reassure Green Party members that any compromises, concessions and amendments were only made to get the bill through Holyrood and to prevent Westminster from blocking it. Once it was passed, he said, the law could then be amended to go further on the trans agenda – by which he presumably meant recognition for ‘nonbinary’ people and probably an even shorter period of reflection for teens seeking to change gender.

Surprisingly, Harvie is not even the nuttiest of the Scottish Greens’ asylum-dwellers. Maggie Chapman, the Green MSP for North East Scotland, has suggested children as young as eight should be allowed to legally change their gender.

Yet despite the extremism of the Scottish Greens on trans, much of the media insisted on giving this troupe of clowns a free pass. This was more than a little mystifying given that Slater and Harvie are not exactly likeable characters. Harvie is so consistently angry and combustible he risks being reported to emergency services as a fire hazard. Slater, meanwhile, is so lazy that she once insisted to her staff she ‘didn’t want to work every day’, even when COP26, the global climate-change shindig, came to Glasgow. Saving the planet? Sure, but not if it involves overtime.

What finally began to turn the political tide against the Scottish Greens was their arrogance and incompetence. Harvie and Slater seemed to fancy themselves as some sort of X-Men / X-Them – as super-evolved humans with special powers of empathy. Yet the only special power they ever actually exhibited was the ability to turn anything they touched to rubble.

The pressure on the SNP to end the power-sharing pact with the Greens had been building for months. Green-backed policies were proving consistently disastrous. The collapse of the bottle-recycling scheme, the cancellation of a hare-brained policy to ban fishing in large chunks of Scotland’s waters and the recent introduction of a ban on wood-burning stoves in a country with vast forests underlined the growing feeling among ordinary SNP members that the Greens were a penny short of a shilling.

In the end, it was the Greens’ reaction to the Cass Review into children’s gender clinics that was the final straw for the SNP. Harvie simply refused to accept its conclusions. A couple of weeks ago, he told BBC Scotland that there were ‘far too many criticisms’ of the report from trans activists for him to accept it as a ‘valid scientific document’. Then, in an interview last week on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Harvie was asked five times by host Nick Robinson to say whether he accepted the Cass Review’s findings. He refused each time.

This was part of a pattern. Leading Green MSP Ross Greer publicly challenged the methodology used by Dr Hilary Cass, and argued there were other equally qualified clinicians who disputed her review’s findings. He didn’t name them. The Green Party’s LGBTQ+ group, the Rainbow Greens, went even further, calling the Cass Review ‘an internationally discredited murder charter’. When the Sandyford, Scotland’s youth gender clinic, announced that it would no longer prescribe puberty blockers in response to Cass’s finding that they are unsafe and ineffective, the Greens condemned the decision.

From that point on, with Yousaf and the SNP accepting the Sandyford’s decision and acquiescing to the Cass Review, SNP higher-ups must have known that a split with the Greens was inevitable. The Greens’ gender derangement and their intractable opposition to medical evidence made the Bute House Agreement untenable. And so Yousaf decided to act, and throw out the Greens before they could walk.

Much of the media have been only too willing to accept the Scottish Greens’ claim that the breach with the SNP can be explained solely by the Scottish government’s abandonment of certain environmental goals. But this is misleading. The SNP’s decision to drop the target to reduce carbon emissions by 75 per cent by 2030 no doubt angered the yurt-dwelling, moon-worshipping membership of the Greens. But it was the divergence of the SNP and the Greens over the Cass Review that turned a potential split into a chasmic divide. After all, the Greens had already threatened to collapse the coalition if the SNP backtracked on Sturgeon’s gender-recognition reforms in March last year. Gender identity was always a make-or-break issue for the Greens.

They may now have exposed just how mad they are in their demented rejection of the Cass Review. But it’s worth remembering that the Greens’ equally mad eco-agenda still enjoys the support of many supposedly right-thinking people. These ‘sensible’ types see no problem with waging war on the fossil-fuel industry – one of the only technologically advanced, world-class industries Scotland has – or even with the notion that a modern economy can function without economic growth.

The Greens may have finally revealed how crackpot they are on gender. But we now need to start treating other Green policies with the objectivity and rigour with which the Cass Review treated the NHS’s gender-identity services for children. We might well find that green orthodoxy is every bit as idiotic as stopping kids going through puberty or letting blokes into girls’ changing rooms.

Malcolm Clark is a TV producer. Visit his substack, The Secret Gender Files, here.

Picture by: Getty.

To enquire about republishing spiked’s content, a right to reply or to request a correction, please contact the managing editor, Viv Regan.

Topics Politics UK


Want to join the conversation?

Only spiked supporters and patrons, who donate regularly to us, can comment on our articles.

Join today