TO the surprise of very few, Boris Johnson has decreed there will be no indyref2. Legally, he has the right to do so. But his position is both democratically and morally indefensible. The people have spoken, and their will must prevail.

Some of you reading this may say: “If Boris will not listen, let’s take to the streets ... Let’s show him who is boss.” After all, isn’t that what Canon Kenyon Wright suggests?

Well actually, no, that was not Kenyon’s way. He did not take to the streets. Instead he headed up the Constitutional Convention that led to the Scotland Act and thence to the Scottish Parliament, because he recognised the value of pressing the moral case.

His argument was that governance rests on consent. With others, he sought that consent for devolution and this view prevailed. It was a clear demonstration of soft power. He also believed that morals trump the law, in the sense that for the law to be sustainable it needs to be founded on agreed moral precepts. Once these are abandoned, the state has no future.

Kenyon and I founded the Constitutional Commission to help put in place a constitution for Scotland based on clear, agreed moral principles. And I ask myself, what would he make of the present constitutional crisis?

How would he respond to the show of despotic force by Boris Johnson? How would he deal with a state increasingly devoid of respect for democracy and morality?

My sense of it is that Kenyon would do as he did before. He would accept the outcome of the last General Election and concede that the UK Government has a majority that will enable them to carry all before them for the foreseeable future.

But he would also argue that all avenues ought to be examined to enable the equally clear decision of the Scottish people to be realised.

In that respect, I believe he would welcome a new Constitutional Convention whose membership would be open to all interested in Scotland’s constitutional future. He would envisage that an increasing number of Labour, Tory and LibDem voters will become unhappy about governance by those lacking any form of moral compass. He would argue that these folks should be welcomed to this discussion.

And I could safely say that he would argue that the work of that Constitutional Convention ought to be predicated on a draft constitution for Scotland. He always viewed this as a vital and fundamental requirement.

I suspect he would further contend that another independence referendum will happen. But he would also maintain that winning a referendum is not the whole deal.

If a Constitutional Convention were to produce a draft constitution, then a consultative referendum might be held to agree the text. Scotland could discuss the sort of constitution it wants, and thereby change the nature of the debate.

As the months pass and Brexit brings increasing chaos to an already divided UK, we could concentrate instead on the positive aspects of the fundamentals of setting up a new state.

This ought to be our collective focus. Rather than dwelling on the inequities and failings of the present UK constitution, let’s discuss and debate what principles and values will take its place. Others inside the UK might also welcome this development. They too will be deeply affected by government ineptitude and become increasingly frustrated by the rejection of any measures to ameliorate its idiocies.

They may well seek to join hands in supporting an initiative that respects democracy and human rights and enshrines moral principles.

RIGHT now, Boris Johnson and his cohorts appear invincible. They know they can exploit the UK’s unwritten constitution to implement constitutional changes at a whim. And they will be tempted to pile one undemocratic excess upon another.

One thing is certain, however. Having scorned democracy in Scotland they will do so elsewhere. And despite appearances, saner voices in the wider political class may come to the conclusion that while Scotland is lost, there may be real value in enlisting Scottish support for wider constitutional change across the UK when the time comes.

I fancy that if Kenyon were here today, he might say that Boris Johnson has done us a great favour.

We are now in the fortunate position that there is clarity. The Union is ended. It will rot from the head down. Discussion now needs to focus on what will replace it. As this column has argued this is no mean task. It will take real effort and dedication from many people. And these folks are going to need to bring others along.

But it will all be worth it to set the path for a new country based on firm moral principles.

This column welcomes questions from readers