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Old 7th February 2020, 03:02 AM   #121
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Originally Posted by Arcade22 View Post
As far as I'm concerned, the age of the individual in question seems irrelevant. You could argue that it makes it worse, but I have no doubt that the same turn of events could have occurred had they been 21 or 31 years old.
Both the ages and the sexes are irrelevant insofar as Mackay strikes me as a very typical pest of the sort who refuses to take a hint.

But honestly I don't see how this story can be reported without bringing the target's age into it. It was the boy's mother who initiated contact with the police, and the victim will never be able to be identified by name or give an interview on-camera because he is a minor, and I don't see how any outlet is supposed to explain those facts without attaching the boy's age to things.
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Old 7th February 2020, 03:24 AM   #122
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Technically he's not a minor because the legal age of majority in Scotland is 16. There are exceptions for things like drinking alcohol and driving a car, but you are a legal adult at 16. I still think the boy's age is highly relevant though.
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Old 7th February 2020, 04:12 AM   #123
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I think this is a good read for people who want an indication of how grown-up local opinion views the situation.

https://www.holyrood.com/comment/vie...king_15082.htm
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Old 7th February 2020, 04:43 AM   #124
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It may be an Op-Ed but it makes grim reading and confirms that the SNP are right to have suspended him.
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Old 7th February 2020, 04:53 AM   #125
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Originally Posted by Architect View Post
It may be an Op-Ed but it makes grim reading and confirms that the SNP are right to have suspended him.
"The full transcript of the texts is so much more disturbing than the ones initially highlighted by the Sun’s explosive front-page splash"


My googlefu is failing me, anyone got a link to the full transcripts?
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Old 7th February 2020, 05:27 AM   #126
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I think they might have been published by the paper on an inside page.
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Old 7th February 2020, 05:27 AM   #127
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https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/109045...land-messages/
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Old 7th February 2020, 05:35 AM   #128
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
I think this is a good read for people who want an indication of how grown-up local opinion views the situation.

https://www.holyrood.com/comment/vie...king_15082.htm
By "grown up", do you mean "In line with my views"?
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Old 7th February 2020, 06:00 AM   #129
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Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
Both the ages and the sexes are irrelevant insofar as Mackay strikes me as a very typical pest of the sort who refuses to take a hint.

But honestly I don't see how this story can be reported without bringing the target's age into it. It was the boy's mother who initiated contact with the police, and the victim will never be able to be identified by name or give an interview on-camera because he is a minor, and I don't see how any outlet is supposed to explain those facts without attaching the boy's age to things.
And yet from the articles I've read, most of them do not even directly imply that his behaviour was unwelcome. The impression you get is clearly that he resigned simply because he messaged the "victim" who was a boy and aged 16 years.

This was reported as "Scottish Government Minister has resigned after messaging a 16 year old boy" and not "Scottish Minister has resigned after harassing teenage youth with incessant messages". There is a difference between the two headlines.
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Old 7th February 2020, 06:20 AM   #130
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
I think this is a good read for people who want an indication of how grown-up local opinion views the situation.

https://www.holyrood.com/comment/vie...king_15082.htm
So the undercurrent among the opinions of the "grown-up locals" is that he should have spared them the controversy of his actions by being more discreet and savvy in hitting on 16 year old boys?

Seems reasonable.
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Old 7th February 2020, 11:30 AM   #131
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Originally Posted by Architect View Post
You are incorrect.
No I'm not that's why you can't explain why and only made a content free post.
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Old 7th February 2020, 12:45 PM   #132
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Originally Posted by Architect View Post
The claim is that, uninvited, he contacted the boy by way of social media and send over 200 messages during a period of some six months. These included at least light-hearted apparent invitations to formal events. Beyond referring to the boy as "cute" there does not seem to be any overtly sexual material although, having seen those published, the tone is clearly flirtatious.

The 2005 Act only applies to people below the age of 16 hence this is not illegal grooming. It is over the age of consent. Nevertheless as recently as last Easter the Scottish Government and Police Scotland launched a campaign highlighting the risk of grooming, and there have been other schemes highlighting (for example) texting and social media conduct.

For a Minister, in a supposedly stable relationship, to have engaged in such messaging with someone who has just turned sixteen and is some 26 years older is a significant error of judgement insofar as the publicity currently covering the Scottish press could have been reasonably foreseen. Mr. MacKay has been in local and then central (Scottish) government for a number of years and should reasonably be aware of the expectation of high standards in public life. One need only look at Michael Russell's problems some fifteen years ago to anticipate what might happen (albeit Mike had temporarily lost his seat).

That reasonably calls into question his judgement in respect of other matters and, notwithstanding the seperation of public and private life, I suggest that it is not unreasonable for him to fall on his sword. In my mind the question is how far it goes: is this simply stepping back from high office, or will the Scottish Parliament expect him to resign his seat. My view is the former, but let's see.

Quoted for Baylor.
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Old 7th February 2020, 01:14 PM   #133
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Originally Posted by Arcade22 View Post
And yet from the articles I've read, most of them do not even directly imply that his behaviour was unwelcome.
The article with the interview with the victim makes it clear the advances were unwelcome. Contact was unsolicited and the boy had no idea who Mackay was, but was okay talking because at first "There was nothing bad about it. It seemed like he wasn’t looking for anything and just wanted a chat." But as Mackay kept contacting him the boy became increasingly uncomfortable:

Quote:
A SCHOOLBOY targeted online by government minister Derek Mackay told how he felt forced to make up lies to avoid a face-to-face encounter with the powerful MSP.

...

“He asked if I wanted to help him out. At the time I was thinking about helping because I wouldn’t have minded.

“I would be having OK conversations that were completely normal and nothing in it.

“Then at other points it would get a bit weird and I’d feel a bit uneasy.

“I had never met him in person in my life and I didn’t really know who he was, so I would never say yes to that kind of thing.

“He was being persistent and constantly trying to convince me to go but I was making excuses not to — I made up the stupidest excuse off the top of my head.

“I told him my brother had split his head open but it never even happened.

“I just wanted to make something up because I didn’t want to go.
After making that excuse, the boy says he stopped replying to Mackay's texts altogether, although Mackay continued to send him messages anyway. "Ghosting" someone like that is exactly not what one does when the communications are welcome.

Quote:
The lad said: “It seems very inappropriate behaviour because it could ruin his career and people could turn against him.

“And it could ruin his chances of taking over from Nicola Sturgeon.

“I would hope he will have learned from his mistake. I’m nervous about what people will think and what his supporters will think.

“I just wanted to speak out to stop other people getting targeted like that. He’s very high profile so it’s worrying.”
The bolded is also not the statement of someone who is okay with the communication he was getting. You don't "speak out" to prevent other people "getting targeted" by something that you think is fine.
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Old 7th February 2020, 02:02 PM   #134
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Originally Posted by Architect View Post
Firstly, although there is no evidence of any illegal activity (16 not being a minor in Scotland) this is nonetheless a serious error of judgement on the part of a senior Scottish government minister.
It is worse than a crime, it is a mistake.
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Old 7th February 2020, 02:20 PM   #135
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This caught my eye, Mackay said he was going to the Canary Islands for the sun and this ensued:

DM: “Winter sun” A: “[redacted]” DM: “Aw lovely” DM: “I’ve been to [redacted]” A: “Great cities, a really great city that’s really underrated is [redacted], great place, some people say its better than [redacted]”

WTH with the redactions? How on earth is that sensitive info?

Anyway the teen sounds like he is trying to not be outright rude and at times Mackay is sending like 5 texts while the kid eventually responds with, "Hi" or a wave emoji and makes excuses rather than tell Mackay to sod off. Finally he just starts ignoring him and there's a series of 10-12 Mackay posts with no reply. It was not long after the "you're cute" message.
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Old 7th February 2020, 02:26 PM   #136
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Originally Posted by Minoosh View Post
This caught my eye, Mackay said he was going to the Canary Islands for the sun and this ensued:

DM: “Winter sun” A: “[redacted]” DM: “Aw lovely” DM: “I’ve been to [redacted]” A: “Great cities, a really great city that’s really underrated is [redacted], great place, some people say its better than [redacted]”

WTH with the redactions? How on earth is that sensitive info?
I suppose a list of the places he has been might be considered potentially identifying information for someone who's supposed to remain unidentified.

Originally Posted by Minoosh View Post
Anyway the teen sounds like he is trying to not be outright rude and at times Mackay is sending like 5 texts while the kid eventually responds with, "Hi" or a wave emoji and makes excuses rather than tell Mackay to sod off. Finally he just starts ignoring him and there's a series of 10-12 Mackay posts with no reply. It was not long after the "you're cute" message.
It seems to me the boy never sends another reply again after the "you're really cute" message.
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Old 7th February 2020, 03:42 PM   #137
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Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
The article with the interview with the victim makes it clear the advances were unwelcome.
Emphasizing that point was deemed not important by the other newspapers. They chose to distill the story into one where he resigned because he messaged a 16 year old boy and called him cute.

Wasn't it exactly this kind of sick pervert that they warned about before they lowered the age of consent for gay sex?

Quote:
After making that excuse, the boy says he stopped replying to Mackay's texts altogether, although Mackay continued to send him messages anyway. "Ghosting" someone like that is exactly not what one does when the communications are welcome
.

Yes, and I agree that he should have gotten the hint around that point, but ghosting is the not telling him to stop.

Quote:
The bolded is also not the statement of someone who is okay with the communication he was getting. You don't "speak out" to prevent other people "getting targeted" by something that you think is fine.
Everything considered, unless he has a habit of doing this as some have suggested, his conduct was quite tame by the standards of unwelcome advances. He was not sleazy or obscene. There's nothing at all to suggest that he was trying to pressure or coerce the boy into something against his will. He didn't suddenly ask him sexual questions or anything.

Maybe that was the problem. If he was more upfront about his intentions he might have gotten a more direct dismissal. "Want to come over and suck my dick" might not be so very wholesome but it's not like you can miss the point...
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Old 7th February 2020, 06:39 PM   #138
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Originally Posted by Architect View Post
Firstly, although there is no evidence of any illegal activity (16 not being a minor in Scotland) this is nonetheless a serious error of judgement on the part of a senior Scottish government minister. Mr. McKay is 42/43 and it should have been obvious that a 26 year age gap was inappropriate.
Quoted for Architect.
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Old 8th February 2020, 02:21 AM   #139
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After reading the other allegations and the transcript, he's moved into my "creepy stalker" category, nothing to do with the age difference, he shouldn't have been behaving like that with anyone. We are better of not having someone who can't control himself in "high office". (Albeit given recent elections my view is a minority view.)

I am yet again reminded how some people have no self control, no self censor and no apparent social appropriateness awareness.
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Old 8th February 2020, 02:58 AM   #140
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Originally Posted by Baylor View Post
Quoted for Architect.
Right, let's look at the two posts side-by-side with the appropriate sections highlighted.

Quote:
Firstly, although there is no evidence of any illegal activity (16 not being a minor in Scotland) this is nonetheless a serious error of judgement on the part of a senior Scottish government minister. Mr. McKay is 42/43 and it should have been obvious that a 26 year age gap was inappropriate.

The question is therefore what sanction, if any, accrues. His resignation as a minister has happened, but is he expecting a few years on the back benches then back to the fore? Should calls for his resignation as an MSP be heeded?

My gut reaction is that he should be consigned to the back benches for a lengthy period, given the lapse of judgement, and preferably left there. Resignation from his seat, although doubtless on the lips of Unionist-leaning press outlets, seems excessive where there is no hint of illegality.
Quote:
The claim is that, uninvited, he contacted the boy by way of social media and send over 200 messages during a period of some six months. These included at least light-hearted apparent invitations to formal events. Beyond referring to the boy as "cute" there does not seem to be any overtly sexual material although, having seen those published, the tone is clearly flirtatious.

The 2005 Act only applies to people below the age of 16 hence this is not illegal grooming. It is over the age of consent. Nevertheless as recently as last Easter the Scottish Government and Police Scotland launched a campaign highlighting the risk of grooming, and there have been other schemes highlighting (for example) texting and social media conduct.

For a Minister, in a supposedly stable relationship, to have engaged in such messaging with someone who has just turned sixteen and is some 26 years older is a significant error of judgement insofar as the publicity currently covering the Scottish press could have been reasonably foreseen. Mr. MacKay has been in local and then central (Scottish) government for a number of years and should reasonably be aware of the expectation of high standards in public life. One need only look at Michael Russell's problems some fifteen years ago to anticipate what might happen (albeit Mike had temporarily lost his seat).

That reasonably calls into question his judgement in respect of other matters and, notwithstanding the seperation of public and private life, I suggest that it is not unreasonable for him to fall on his sword. In my mind the question is how far it goes: is this simply stepping back from high office, or will the Scottish Parliament expect him to resign his seat. My view is the former, but let's see.
It is quite clear that my criticism is based on the combination of age difference and relative youth of the boy. That you chose to interpret it as a change in position reflects, I suggest, more critically on your own willingness - or perhaps ability - to follow the flow of the conversation. It also clearly fails to appreciate the extent to which, in light of the messages, Mr. Mackay was grooming or harrassing the boy notwithstanding the Scottish legal instruments in respect of minimum ages.

You and I have not locked horns before but it appears to me, based on the voting thread and comments made by others in response, that this is not an isolated incident. I encourage you to consider more fully the facts before you rush to respond in future.

I await your apology with keen anticipation but only modest expectation.
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Old 8th February 2020, 06:02 AM   #141
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
After reading the other allegations and the transcript, he's moved into my "creepy stalker" category, nothing to do with the age difference, he shouldn't have been behaving like that with anyone. We are better of not having someone who can't control himself in "high office". (Albeit given recent elections my view is a minority view.)

I am yet again reminded how some people have no self control, no self censor and no apparent social appropriateness awareness.
What altered your opinion?

What about his behaviour is so bad that he shouldn't do it with anyone?

I don't think he would have got to the position he had if he had no control, no self censor etc. It apparently failed to kick in adequately in this particular instance.
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Old 8th February 2020, 06:07 AM   #142
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Originally Posted by sphenisc View Post
I don't think he would have got to the position he had if he had no control, no self censor etc. It apparently failed to kick in adequately in this particular instance.

In the absence of corroboration caution must be exercised, however Mr. MacKay had a reputation within the SNP as something of a party animal (not in the political sense) and had himself made jokes about the First Minister banning him from the pub at conferences, etc. The question is perhaps whether there has been a pattern of deteriorating behaviour over time rather than a sudden change.
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Old 8th February 2020, 07:14 AM   #143
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Technically he's not a minor because the legal age of majority in Scotland is 16. There are exceptions for things like drinking alcohol and driving a car, but you are a legal adult at 16. I still think the boy's age is highly relevant though.
According to what I read, Scotland has a concept called the age of capacity, which is distinct from the age of majority, the former being 16 and the latter being 18.

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1969/39/contents

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of...land)_Act_1991

As such, 18 would be when one is "officially" an adult. However, at 16 one has the legal capacity to enter into contracts and such.
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Old 8th February 2020, 07:15 AM   #144
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Originally Posted by Architect View Post
In the absence of corroboration caution must be exercised, however Mr. MacKay had a reputation within the SNP as something of a party animal (not in the political sense) and had himself made jokes about the First Minister banning him from the pub at conferences, etc. The question is perhaps whether there has been a pattern of deteriorating behaviour over time rather than a sudden change.

The second paragraph in the image in this tweet might be of interest.

https://twitter.com/RevStu/status/1226142153371418625
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Old 8th February 2020, 07:27 AM   #145
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Originally Posted by sphenisc View Post
What altered your opinion?



What about his behaviour is so bad that he shouldn't do it with anyone?



I don't think he would have got to the position he had if he had no control, no self censor etc. It apparently failed to kick in adequately in this particular instance.
As I said reading the entire transcript, it's not one single message. Add that to the other account from someone else, and it seems he is unable to control himself.

And it doesn't seem to have just failed him the once, but at least twice.
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Old 8th February 2020, 07:29 AM   #146
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
The second paragraph in the image in this tweet might be of interest.

https://twitter.com/RevStu/status/1226142153371418625
Not really the first paragraphs gives themselves away as being a paranoid conspiracy theorist.
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Old 8th February 2020, 08:18 AM   #147
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You have form in throwing around the "paranoid conspiracy theorist" slur to dismiss people who turned out to be entirely right, Darat.
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Old 8th February 2020, 08:21 AM   #148
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Whilst Stuart Campbell has a tendancy towards the more hard-line end of the party, and an unfounded disklike of our First Minister, I'm not at all sure that describing him as a "paranoid conspiracy theorist" is accurate.

Darat, to what extent are you familiar with his work at the WingsOverScotland site?

I hasten to add that I am not particularly a fan, although I do like his demolition of Unionist spin whether by politicians or the media.
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Old 8th February 2020, 08:23 AM   #149
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Darat is apparently talking about Kevin McKenna, who wrote the article Stuart Campbell screenshotted, rather than Stuart himself. But no doubt he thinks the same about Stuart.

I'm not at all sure his "dislike" of Nicola Sturgeon is unwarranted. There are some fairly alarming things going on.
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Old 8th February 2020, 08:30 AM   #150
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
You have form in throwing around the "paranoid conspiracy theorist" slur to dismiss people who turned out to be entirely right, Darat.
Telling lies again Rolfe.
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Old 8th February 2020, 08:32 AM   #151
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Originally Posted by Architect View Post
Whilst Stuart Campbell has a tendancy towards the more hard-line end of the party, and an unfounded disklike of our First Minister, I'm not at all sure that describing him as a "paranoid conspiracy theorist" is accurate.

Darat, to what extent are you familiar with his work at the WingsOverScotland site?

I hasten to add that I am not particularly a fan, although I do like his demolition of Unionist spin whether by politicians or the media.
My comment was based on the screen shot. Someone wittering on about ultras and the like are obvious cranks.
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Old 8th February 2020, 08:52 AM   #152
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Well, I can imagine circumstances where this sort of thing could be all right. But most of the times it's just rather creepy and unpleasant - the imbalance on all levels is so overwhelming. Most 16yrs olds are not full rounded persons but just children with bodies way more developed than minds.
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Old 8th February 2020, 09:03 AM   #153
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Scottish minister has been "caught" messaging a 16 year old. The implication is heavily that it was not "innocent" messaging, one of the messages called the 16 year old "cute" and that seems to be the most salacious one as that is what the newspaper that broke the story has led with.

He has now resigned.

Should he have resigned? He has never met the 16 year old, all the mentions of meeting are in public places and even at public events, and nothing that would seem to be clandestine. Is this Is this a case of "no smoke without a fire" and the Minister just being a tad stupid rather than anything malicious?

Link to story : https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/new...nce-secretary/
He was without a doubt embarrassed about the situation. Calling a young lady cute is pretty benign and he might have been able to weather the storm. I myself used to chat with kids often but not always girls and I referred to them as sweetheart and honey often. That's what I used to call my cousins children. Recently my cousin adopted a little girl and I referred to her as sweety and said that she was my pal. Some people including myself have an affection twoards children that is not sexual in any way.
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Old 8th February 2020, 10:28 AM   #154
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Originally Posted by llwyd View Post
Well, I can imagine circumstances where this sort of thing could be all right. But most of the times it's just rather creepy and unpleasant - the imbalance on all levels is so overwhelming. Most 16yrs olds are not full rounded persons but just children with bodies way more developed than minds.
The Scottish peoples elected representatives have deemed that 16 year old boys are mature and developed enough to take responsibility for their own sexual relationships, which includes the responsibility to assert their own interests and wishes by declining any advances they are not interested in.

More specifically they lowered the age of consent for gay sex to 16 years, knowing very well that this would allow "creepy" middle aged men to court and proposition 16 year old boys with almost absolute impunity. That is, unless it would fall under some other criminal offence.

If they are disgusted and outraged by someone utilizing their freedom to try and court a 16 year old boy, maybe the elected representatives of the Scottish people should do something about that.
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Old 8th February 2020, 10:35 AM   #155
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Good rule of thumb is that if you have to argue about where the line is, you're up to no good. Unethical sleazebags always try to reframe their behaviors as technically legal.

Full blown adults trying to get busy with kids is always bad, barring a few rare outliers. AoC is the cheapest of cop outs.

As a guideline, over 21 shouldn't knowingly get in the pants of under 18 for any reason.
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Old 8th February 2020, 10:50 AM   #156
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Originally Posted by Arcade22 View Post
The Scottish peoples elected representatives have deemed that 16 year old boys are mature and developed enough to take responsibility for their own sexual relationships, which includes the responsibility to assert their own interests and wishes by declining any advances they are not interested in.

More specifically they lowered the age of consent for gay sex to 16 years, knowing very well that this would allow "creepy" middle aged men to court and proposition 16 year old boys with almost absolute impunity. That is, unless it would fall under some other criminal offence.

If they are disgusted and outraged by someone utilizing their freedom to try and court a 16 year old boy, maybe the elected representatives of the Scottish people should do something about that.
As a Scot, if our idea of 'courtship' is an invitation to deliver political pamphlets I'm surprised there's any of us left.
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Old 8th February 2020, 10:56 AM   #157
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Originally Posted by Thermal View Post
Full blown adults trying to get busy with kids is always bad, barring a few rare outliers. AoC is the cheapest of cop outs.
If it's something that's always bad then the Scottish people are perfectly able to legally restrict peoples freedom to have sex with 16 years old boys by having their elected representatives enact legislation making it a criminal offence.

Why would they allow "creepy middle aged men" to do something that's always bad for the youth of the country? Are these not the people who are going to make up the core of an independent Scotland?

Instead of treating their 16 year olds as mentally and intellectually incompetent the opposite seems to be occurring, with them lowering the age at which people can vote also to 16 years.
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Old 8th February 2020, 12:22 PM   #158
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Originally Posted by Arcade22 View Post
The Scottish peoples elected representatives have deemed that 16 year old boys are mature and developed enough to take responsibility for their own sexual relationships, which includes the responsibility to assert their own interests and wishes by declining any advances they are not interested in.

More specifically they lowered the age of consent for gay sex to 16 years, knowing very well that this would allow "creepy" middle aged men to court and proposition 16 year old boys with almost absolute impunity. That is, unless it would fall under some other criminal offence.

If they are disgusted and outraged by someone utilizing their freedom to try and court a 16 year old boy, maybe the elected representatives of the Scottish people should do something about that.
For some people it may well be the age or age difference that they find disturbing, however regardless of that his behavior is stalking or at least stalking like.
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Old 8th February 2020, 12:27 PM   #159
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Originally Posted by sphenisc View Post
As a Scot, if our idea of 'courtship' is an invitation to deliver political pamphlets I'm surprised there's any of us left.
At first that was my view, I initially could have seen him as someone trying to groom someone.... to become politically active.

However the sum of the messaging was for me enough to discount that.
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Old 9th February 2020, 06:15 AM   #160
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
At first that was my view, I initially could have seen him as someone trying to groom someone.... to become politically active.

However the sum of the messaging was for me enough to discount that.

Both the Scottish and UK press, nationalist and unionist, seem to take a hard line on Mr. MacKay today - a rare show of consistency of opinion.
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