Scotland politics

BBC Generation 2014: Ida McVarish's story

Ida McVarish
Ida McVarish is from the Highlands

"I have two almost contradictory career paths I could go down. Both would have me in very different positions, in 10 years' time.

"My first choice would be to go to a good university and study forensic psychiatry or forensic psychology. This would mean that in 10 years' time I would, hopefully, be starting a successful career in forensic psychiatry/psychology.

"By this time I hope I would have helped a couple of criminals cope with and come to terms with their mental health issues.

"My second career choice would be to join the Armed Forces. If this were to happen, in 10 years' time I hope I would be considering a higher rank in the army and would have been in many different situations. I hope that in 10 years I would have helped protect and serve the country.

"Looking at the question of where I would live - well, I would like to live in California or somewhere warm and exotic like that, but to be completely honest I will probably still be living in Scotland.

"Now, let me imagine what my country would be like in 2030.

"If it did not vote for independence I feel we would not have improved much, we would be in the same "ok position". Maybe we would have started losing our oil resources. I think we would have advanced in technology by quite a bit though and would have found some better cures for certain illnesses.

"If we go independent, however, I feel we would be on a fast-track towards a crisis.

"At the moment we are relying on the oil and gas that we have to support our country financially (if we go independent), but what about when it runs out? We can't rely on a depleting resource to keep our country safe from a financial crisis.

"Outside the independence question, what would I like Scotland to be like in 2030?

"Well, I hope they become stricter about teen pregnancy.

"At the moment I could name many people who are having underage sex and even a few who are pregnant before the age of 16.

"I think the government should start being stricter about their laws on this matter. At the moment nobody seems to really care about this matter. The fact that a law is not being enforced just makes other teenagers think it is ok to go out, get drunk and inevitably, get pregnant.

"I also think they need to improve their prison systems. Instead of locking up those who are mentally ill I feel we should be treating them and putting them into good rehabilitation centres. The first issue should be their mental health, not the fact they committed a crime due to it.

"In terms of me being able to vote in the Scottish independence referendum, I think that was a good decision on the government's behalf. I feel we should have a say in what happens seeing as it is us who will have to be living with the decision for longest."

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