Sir, – I write regarding the suspension of Angus Councillor Richard Moore (“Councillor’s conduct sees him suspended”, Courier, November 20).
It amazes me that someone who made inappropriate and clearly unwanted physical contact with several women, and referred to them as “lovely ladies” and “dear”, had to be told that this is unacceptable behaviour.
Worse though was his assertion that in Yorkshire these comments are not derogatory.
I wonder on whose opinion that is based? These comments, given in the context of this case, are derogatory, whichever part of the UK he is in.
I am minded of an occasion, not too long ago, when a young man serving me in a local Post Office, referred to me as “love”.
I objected to this, and, rather than simply apologising for offending me, he argued his case that he came from England and it was acceptable in England.
I told him that I too had originally come from England and I would find it no more acceptable there than I do here.
We should all be able to expect a respectful level of formality from strangers.
We only have to look at the current display in some branches of M&S where slogans suggest women “must have fancy little knickers”, while men “must have outfits to impress”.
I challenge the post office worker, M&S, and Councillor Moore to see how they would feel if these labels were reversed.
Disciplinary was waste of money
Sir,– With regard to the suspension of Councillor Moore, I believe this is all a case of using a sledgehammer to crack a nut.
All the councillor did was refer to the four women (who made the complaints) as “lovely ladies”, flicked the hood of one of them to get her attention – no doubt in a noisy bustling setting which prompted him to do that – refer to one or more of them as “dear” and physically touch them in a way that was unwanted and unexpected. That last one sounds really bad because in our over- sexualised society we are all too quick to go assuming the worst of people.
I don’t believe that there was enough information reported on those “touching” incidents for readers to come to any firm conclusion of whether or not these incidents of touching were appropriate, and if they were inappropriate, how bad they actually were.
In noisy bustling situations I have sometimes had cause to touch people’s arms to get their attention – touching doesn’t always have to mean groping or inappropriate advances.
I have had a lengthy career working for a local authority and a local authority partner agency.
During those years I witnessed and experienced abuses which make this incident look very tame indeed.
None of those incidents led to the hue and cry that has been evident here.
Nothing was reported about Councillor Moore having had any history of such inappropriate behaviour.
I get the impression that Councillor Moore is in his 60s.
For the first half of his life, that “lovely ladies” banter of his would have been acceptable and possibly even considered as gentlemanly.
I am slightly younger than this councillor and people in my generation have had to unlearn many attitudes/ expressions/practises that were once taught to us, or that we were encouraged in.
Sometimes people of my age and older slip up or misread the situations we are in.
The people of Angus deserve better than to have their council tax monies wasted on all the procedures that would have been generated by this incident, which I believe need not have happened.
I feel that this could, and should, have been handled better.
11 Maule Street,
Family has been badly let down
Sir,– Sometimes one wonders if anyone in our justice system is awake.
A father whose children were sexually abused by a Fife paedophile say the family have lost faith in the justice system after his jail sentence was slashed (“Fife family have ‘lost faith in justice’”, Courier, November 20).
When you read such reports as this it shows you clearly that there are a lot of mistakes being made in the justice system and one would hope for hope’s sake that the lawyers for the family involved jump in with a strong objection.
Also one would hope that, with no prompting, the justice minister for Scotland will be questioning this.
Roy R M McIntosh.
50 Victoria Road,
Gender identity is not a choice
Sir,– Leslie Thomson got carried away cutting and pasting from my letter on LGBT indoctrination in schools (Letters, November 21).
In addition to his misunderstanding of the central arguments, he also misinterpreted fragments of text.
He wants children to learn about “the sexual and gender fluidity”.
I, however, regard these concepts as both misguided and dangerous.
They are likely to cause confusion, damage and hurt to young people.
Yet the SNP sides with Mr Thomson.
He demanded some evidence for my suggestion that Catholic schools face a tacit threat of closure if they fail to endorse LGBT indoctrination.
May I respectfully refer Mr Thomson to the meaning of tacit: unspoken.
I welcome Mr Thomson’s agreement that teaching kids they can choose their gender is insane.
However, Education Scotland’s draft guidance states that kids should be taught that “your gender is what you decide”.
He asks when I decided to be cisgender.
I don’t believe in the idea of choosing gender.
Mr Thomson claims that all expressions of sexuality are equal.
In what way?
Not in emotional, mental and physical health outcomes, nor in relationship stability.
I’m not denying that a very small number of people experience the psychological problem of gender identity disorder.
I just object to its celebration as a perfectly positive and healthy thing.
Young people do not benefit from having transgenderism pushed into their consciousness a dozen times a day.
It is creating gender confusion where a healthy gender identity might well have developed otherwise.
I’m interested in the wellbeing of kids, not appeasing aggressive LGBT campaigners – making me a bit of a maverick in Scottish politics.
Brexit language intemperate
Sir,– The latest statement from the PM about EU citizens jumping the queue for UK jobs is inflammatory.
I understand that it was said in the context of a post-EU world without the UK but there is an inference that EU citizens working here have been “queue jumping” ahead of others outwith the EU.
Of course they are not as this is the agreement we have as an EU member state in the same way that UK citizens working in the EU have not been queue jumping.
Surely the PM can be more measured in her remarks at this time with tensions heightened due to Brexit, rather than adding fuel to the fire.
3 Banknowe Terrace,
Selfish cyclists set bad example
Sir,– I, as a pedestrian, am totally fed up of having to take evasive action numerous times a day to avoid being knocked down by selfish and thoughtless cyclists riding on the pavement.
It seems to occur on a daily basis on Crieff Road and Dunkeld Road in Perth – both extremely busy thoroughfares.
There is no excuse for this at all.
The cyclists I refer to are all adults and should be setting an example to younger cyclists.
They constantly demand their rights but it works both ways.
117 Simpson Square,
Hotel cash could be better spent
Sir,– I am surprised Dundee Council is to spend £20 million on a new hotel at site six in the expectation of increased visitor numbers.
Surely this is one hotel too many.
Also, I believe that, given council resources are already being stretched so much, the money would be better spent on improving our existing High Street retail units.
60 Provost Road,