A Toast to US National Tartan Day, 6 APRIL 2021

A video greeting

To introduce myself: I am Donald Maclaren of Maclaren, Chief of my clan and Convenor of the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs.

The individual matters. And each person matters. And especially Scottish persons whether at home or (and I don’t use the word diaspora: it is not our word) those of Scottish descent overseas.

But there is something greater than ourselves and our individual identity. That is the identity that we derive from our origins, our kin and our ancestral lands. There is no more vibrant expression of that identity for us scots than our tartan. It defined us in battle. It defines us still today.

I imagine that there are some of us who don’t manage to wear the kilt every day. No doubt excuses can be made if you find yourself on the trading floor of wall street or if you are toiling in the vineyards in Oregon or a farmer in Oklahoma.  For all scots, however, the tartan is never far from our mind. And the importance of Tartan Day is that it keeps it proudly at the forefront.

On behalf of all the chiefs who are members of the Standing Council – both heads of clans and of families – I am honoured to send greetings on this special day. Our congratulations to the Scottish Coalition USA and the National Tartan Day Capitol committee and to all those involved in this very human celebration.

It is, after all, a celebration of the great kindred that we are part of. And of something even greater and more enduring than any one of us.

A toast to the tartan and to tartan day.