What lunatic thought they should be?

‘Sexting’ children should not be prosecuted, guidelines say

Oh yes, now I remember. The gurning morons that rule us were swept up in a moral panic and decided to pass a law that insists on regarding the playing of doctors and nurses as a criminal offence.

Youngsters currently get a criminal record if they are found texting intimate images of themselves to others.

Somewhat sad that so many of our rulers would have been better left as a stain on their mother’s bedsheets.

35 thoughts on “What lunatic thought they should be?”

  1. So Much For Subtlety

    Some children are doing bad things. New bad things. And they are bad things. God knows what it must be like to have a photo taken in innocence shown to the entire school. So we need a new response to deal with it.

    The question is what. It is new. So is it as rare and as bad as children committing rape? Obviously not. Is it as harmless as playing doctor? I don’t think so. Some response has to be found between the two.

    The other problem is that when it comes to sex, our rulers have a creepy interest in children having sex. They want to encourage them to do so – and talk to them about it all the time. So the line between a child and an adult is blurred when it comes to sex. An adult found with a picture of a 14 year old would be doing hard time. A child?

    This requires common but rigorous sense. A shame our Elders and Betters are so inadequate when it comes to both.

  2. Somewhat sad that so many of our rulers would have been better left as a stain on their mother’s bedsheets.

    Given that they display few human traits, I rather suspect that is what happened to them. A failure to launder said sheets resulted in the development of seminal fluid culture which grew to have a vague resemblance to the human beings the semen was supposed to help create.

  3. SMFS:”God knows what it must be like to have a photo taken in innocence shown to the entire school.”

    Sending nudie photos at any age is not a sensible or innocent thing to do. Under no circs should it be a matter for lawdogs but it is still vastly stupid. An adolescent–above all people–should be wise to the potential for public humiliation involved.

  4. Compared to what supposedly responsible adults put into text & on Twatter, maybe widening the remit of the law & vigorous prosecution’s more the way to go.

  5. So Much For Subtlety

    Mr Ecks – “Sending nudie photos at any age is not a sensible or innocent thing to do. Under no circs should it be a matter for lawdogs but it is still vastly stupid. An adolescent–above all people–should be wise to the potential for public humiliation involved.”

    And yet if they had any common sense we would let them vote or drive cars. They don’t. They are children. That is the point. How to stop them doing bad things without screwing up their entire lives? We need to think of something.

    I really don’t think the nation’s political conversation would be helped by the tabloids publishing some future Diane Abbott’s schoolgirl’s sex-texts. Or some future Corbyn’s.

  6. Mastering a complex skill and having the gumption not to send nudie photos of yourself across a system that most of the kids are more savvy about than the adults are two different things SMFS.

    Lots of kids very prob could drive technically as well as adults–I’m sure lots of junior moto-cross champs can ride a motorbike better than most commentator on here.

  7. “In innocence”? What makes you think the average 14 year old is an “innocent”? The interesting thing here is the assumption that being seen in a sext is some terrible, life ruining embarrassment. When all the evidence we have from the internets is that attractive young women are going out of their way to show off photos as naked and lewd as they possibly can all over the nets. On the basis that the reactions aren’t going to be “you terrible person”, they’re going to be “phwoar, look at the tits on that”.

    So we’re back again really to the thing that this is not about protecting anybody, it’s about preserving modesty and virtue of young ladies and any other 19th century terms you can think of. Hence, the whole “revenge porn” flap, in which “embarrassing” a woman by revealing photos of her gets you jail time. But revealing for instance that your famous ex-boyfriend likes fingers up his bum gets you LOL.

    Anyway, on the issue itself, I thought the Saunders Doctrine was that if you are an underage girl and create “child porn” by sexting, you’re not responsible. But if you’re and underage boy and receive the girl’s homemade “child porn”, you are responsible and the law will come down on you like, quote, “a ton of bricks”. Because it was your patriarchal maleness that made her do it. Etc.

  8. Why should children acquire decorum and discretion when popular culture is teeming with slebs making fame and fortune off leaked sex tapes and naked selfies? Think Paris H and the Kardashian industry. The notion of a private life has been utterly whittled away when Gwynneth Paltrow recommends vaginal steambaths and Bruce/Caitlyn update on their genital status.

  9. There was an interesting catch-22 in that you had to take the prosecutor’s word that the pictures were “intimate”, as obviously you couldn’t be shown them because they were “child pornography”. That alone should have raised some very serious Kafka flags.

  10. “God knows what it must be like to have a photo taken in innocence shown to the entire school. So we need a new response to deal with it.”

    Go to town on the little shit that shared it.

    You can warn kids of the dangers of taking the photos. You can help them deal with the pressure put on them to take them.. but you won’t stop the pictures. Just like you won’t stop them actually having sex.

    So it’s about consent. And if kid A consents to kid B having a picture of [whatever] then nothing sterner than a serious chat from the parents is warranted. And there must be no crime that either could be charged with.

    If there’s no consent then (subject to to evidentiary requirements etc etc) it’s a different ball game. But that should be around distribution, not possession.

  11. As a sort-of-aside: is this issue made more complex by the way schools have sought to treat the kids as adults for the last 20 years or so?

    The words ‘Pupil’, ‘Children’ and so on have been done away with in favour of ‘student’, with it’s less child-like connotations.

  12. So Much For Subtlety

    Mr Ecks – “Mastering a complex skill and having the gumption not to send nudie photos of yourself across a system that most of the kids are more savvy about than the adults are two different things”

    We don’t ban children from driving because they cannot master the skills. God knows where I grew up most boys were driving at 12. We do it because they lack judgement. They are not mature enough to vote – or to make sensible decisions about things like speed.

    Ian B – “What makes you think the average 14 year old is an “innocent”?”

    FFS. Don’t start fixating on that word. I did not say the 14 year old was. I said an innocent photo. Someone might well take a photo for one reason only to have it used for another.

    “The interesting thing here is the assumption that being seen in a sext is some terrible, life ruining embarrassment.”

    Because it is. Or it ought to be. It isn’t interesting. It is obvious. The Hunger Games girl objected when people broke into her Cloud storage and shared her photos. She compared it to rape. Which it sort of is and it sort of isn’t. When someone sends a photo they have no control over its eventual use. Some of those uses are going to be unwanted and psychological consequences will follow.

    Now you may think that prostitutes have sex all the time so you can’t rape them. After all, sex is not the end of the world and nothing to be ashamed of. You may think that if an actress takes a photo for her own private use – or for that of a boyfriend – she has nothing to complain about if the picture is stolen and spread far and wide. You may think that if a naive girl sends a photo to someone only to see it on child porn sites all over the world, she should be proud. But most people would not agree with you on any, or at least some, of those points.

    “On the basis that the reactions aren’t going to be “you terrible person”, they’re going to be “phwoar, look at the tits on that”.”

    As if that is a desirable reaction to most people most of the time.

    “So we’re back again really to the thing that this is not about protecting anybody, it’s about preserving modesty and virtue of young ladies and any other 19th century terms you can think of.”

    Sure. And young men too. Obviously.

    Ljh – “Why should children acquire decorum and discretion when popular culture is teeming with slebs making fame and fortune off leaked sex tapes and naked selfies?”

    Indeed. But where do we start? I don’t think we should start by telling traumatised young girls that they should imitate Paris Hilton because they are all sluts at heart anyway.

    The Thought Gang – “Go to town on the little shit that shared it.”

    Come on. You will destroy a 15 year old boy’s life over something he probably did not mean either? A process that he has little control over once he has passed the photo on? No one here is evil and deserves to suffer life changing consequences. They are just idiots.

    “Just like you won’t stop them actually having sex.”

    Actually we can and we did stop them having sex.

    “If there’s no consent then (subject to to evidentiary requirements etc etc) it’s a different ball game. But that should be around distribution, not possession.”

    A boy sends a photo to a girl. Does she now own it? Can she send it to a friend? Does the photo belong to its owner indefinitely and is the taker entitled to control what is done with that photo from then on?

    The sensible solution is to tell children not to do it. Beat the crap out of them if they do. But some response that does not destroy lives is appropriate – and necessary.

  13. “You will destroy a 15 year old boy’s life over something he probably did not mean either?”

    Did I say I would?

    No. No criminal record, no offenders register. But enough to put the frighteners on someone so that they can rest assured that they will find proper trouble if they do it again.

    Anyone old enough to get kicks out of mucky pictures of their peers is old enough to know that sharing them around isn’t ok.

    “A boy sends a photo to a girl. Does she now own it? Can she send it to a friend? Does the photo belong to its owner indefinitely and is the taker entitled to control what is done with that photo from then on?”

    If Horny Walt Disney sends a picture of Mickey Mouse to a girl then does the girl own Mickey Mouse? No, of course she fucking doesn’t. We sorted all this stuff out long ago. Do keep up.

    “But some response that does not destroy lives is appropriate – and necessary.”

    Which is precisely what I was saying.

  14. “If there’s no consent then (subject to to evidentiary requirements etc etc) it’s a different ball game. But that should be around distribution, not possession.”

    The problem is that teens under 16 (18) cannot legally give consent.
    You’re right up the rock/hard place here between the volatility, differences in mental and physical development, rebelliousness, and downright and utter hornyness that mark young teenagers versus the line drawn by the Law.

    Taking a harsh stance against distribution is a decent-ish way of going about protecting most of the Innocent. But there’s simply no way you’re going to stop the occasional flare-up.
    Like many things, this is one of the New Ways of modern technology, and kids “suffering” from this kind of exposure are actually the first generation of having to deal with it.
    And from what I’ve seen they’re smartening up really, really fast. To the point where in 5 years this kind of thing may have become negligeable, simply because Teen Culture has incorporated it as “Being A Stupid Cow”.

    Kneejerk lawmaking isn’t going to stop it. Teaching your kids that “an image shared, is an image shared forever” may be more constructive and effective.

  15. So Much For Subtlety

    The Thought Gang – “If Horny Walt Disney sends a picture of Mickey Mouse to a girl then does the girl own Mickey Mouse? No, of course she fucking doesn’t. We sorted all this stuff out long ago. Do keep up.”

    That is not the point. Does she own the picture? Can she do with it what she likes? A Japanese billionaire told his relatives he wanted to be cremated with his collection of Impressionists. Which in law he is probably entitled to do. But the public was outraged.

    If Child A sends a picture to Child B, is there a retained legal right? Not for a normal picture there isn’t. But there seems to be some implication there is for “artistic” pictures.

  16. A Japanese billionaire told his relatives he wanted to be cremated with his collection of Impressionists. Which in law he is probably entitled to do. But the public was outraged.

    And if that public was sufficiently outraged, it would be raising the cash to buy them from him. Anything else is just hot air. Or revealed preferences 🙂

  17. I think this is a typical case of using arguments that aren’t the real motivation. Embarrassment? There are numerous means of embarrassing people. For instance, revealing the private sexual preferences of a former sexual partner. Or that they drink a lot, or had an affair, etc. You can reveal that somebody is secretly gay. Which are routinely published in the press and which nobody has ever considered making illegal.

    It’s not about embarrassment. It’s just about creating new categories of porn, stoking up the “victimisation of women and girls” narrative and trying to control people.

    Photos are often embarrassing, but I don’t see anyone demanding protection for the ugly yearbook photo people all over the internet. TTG’s suggestion of some kind of crime of “distributing embarrassing photos” would play interestingly in this day and age.

    Which brings us to this interesting repetition of the feminist meme that girls only do it due to male pressure. “You can help them deal with the pressure put on them to take them.” WAGs have no agency. Except they do have agency, and if they’re physically blessed, they want to make an exhibition of themselves. Hence the Upper School Shortest Skirt Competition that the Puritans are now trying to prevent by making them wear trousers.

    But then the short skirts are I daresay entirely the fault of those nasty boys as well, for having their nasty boy eyes and nasty boy interest in girls at all.

    What is notable of course is that nobody ever, ever suggests legal sanctions against the girls who create this “child pornography”. That tells us a lot about what is driving this latest moral panic.

  18. SMFS: Who the hell has nudie pictures of themselves hanging around for “innocent”–ie non-sexual reasons? Unless to illustrate some sort of medical syndrome.

    How likely is it that a 14 year old would be sending nudie shots for anything other than sexual or ( ok lets be generous) “romantic” reasons. Can you imagine–outside of medicine –for what possible reason one person could “innocently” send another a nude selfie?

    Perhaps Diane Abbot doing so out of mad malice and a desire to harass (or “her-ass” as it might be better put) but nobody else.

  19. Of course the sensible thing would be to just dispense with the (American) terror of the naked body. Once nudity is normalised, there is no embarrassment to be had. Like teh gheys. You go from

    “OMG somebody found out I’m gay this will ruin my career” to “That’s Bob in accounting and his boyfriend Steve, lovely couple”.

    Problem solved.

  20. What amuses me in all this is the utter inconsistency that the SJW types have over teenagers. One the one hand they inform us sternly that we must respect the rights of teens, regard them as adults, allow them to make their own decisions etc etc. We have a ‘Youth Parliament’ for gods sake.

    Then with the other hand they act like Victorian maiden aunts when teens actually start making their own decisions about sex and sexuality.

    The whole thing is bizarre. If a 16 yo (either male or female) is considered able to consent to anal sex then I think they should be able to send and receive pictures of their own and their lover’s genitals. Its not really that inconsistent is it? If seeing a dick pic on her phone is so harmful to a 16yo girl, why is she allowed to consent to one being inserted into her body?

  21. Jim,

    They’d like the age of consent raised as well, which is why it was partially raised with “power relations” (and imagery) in the 2003 SOA.

    This is Feminism remember, who indeed are a bunch of Victorian maiden aunts, as I never tire of pointing out. That’s why they detest the “liberated 70s” so much; indeed the whole driving force of Second Wave feminism was the maiden aunt reaction against the Sexual Revolution.

  22. “Once nudity is normalised, there is no embarrassment to be had. Like teh gheys. You go from

    “OMG somebody found out I’m gay this will ruin my career” to “That’s Bob in accounting and his boyfriend Steve, lovely couple”.”

    No, I don’t think it works like that.

    I can’t remember who I was arguing with on here about the large age gap between a 17/18 yo girl and her 30+ years older lover, vs the 30 year age gap between Stephen Fry and his partner, but the latter was considered perfectly fine, and no negative connotations could be made about SF or his partners motives in the relationship, whereas the former was a case of a dirty old man who should be ashamed of himself for wanting to have sex with a woman that much younger than himself.

    The SJW types will give homosexuals any amount of sexual and moral leeway they will never give to heterosexuals. So the idea of an older man sending a picture of his dick to a 16yo boy would be fine, but an older man doing the same to a 16yo girl would be rape or something.

  23. A Japanese billionaire told his relatives he wanted to be cremated with his collection of Impressionists. Which in law he is probably entitled to do. But the public was outraged.

    Ooh, that’s a difficult one. I think I’d wait for him to die and then see him off at the cremation, and save the paintings. There are ownership laws, and then there’s wanton destruction. I think I’d violate the principle of ownership for that. Maybe not over impressionist paintings because I don’t know what they are, but something like that Martin guitar that Kurt Russell destroyed on the set of The Hateful Eight? Definitely.

  24. Like many things, this is one of the New Ways of modern technology, and kids “suffering” from this kind of exposure are actually the first generation of having to deal with it.
    And from what I’ve seen they’re smartening up really, really fast. To the point where in 5 years this kind of thing may have become negligeable, simply because Teen Culture has incorporated it as “Being A Stupid Cow”.

    This.

    I know people have had kittens on here before when I’ve said this, but kids are not half as naive and stupid when it comes to the internet and technology as their parents believe. My kid brother and sister grew up in the age of full internet access, and haven’t turned into porn-obsessed freaks. If parents weren’t fretting over their precious darlings falling into danger on the internet, they’d be worrying about them listening to corrupting music and calling for that to be banned.

  25. Jim-

    Yes, but that is tangential to my point. It just happens that the SJWs approve of homosexuality but not heterosexuality, for reasons much discussed here. Had they not taken ownership of the “liberal” side of things after the 1970s, the heterosex panic wouldn’t have been revived and everyone would probably be easygoing about nudity and pornography and so on in general by now.

    So one way to look at this is to observe that what the SJWs have done with The Gheys is a template for what could, or could have been, achieved by genuine liberals were they socially dominant.

    In fact, TBH I think things are going that way anyway, despite the SJWs. The internet is awash with selfies, pop singers get lewder every year, Rita Ora flashes her baps on respectable (ish) magazine covers and despite the outrage about Jennifer Lawrence’s photos, in fact they had no effect on her whatsoever (if anything, probably made her a bit more popular). I’m pretty certain (when in optimistic mood) that this is Western Civ’s last great sex panic, and after that it’s curtains for the Puritans.

    Plain, burlap curtains presumably.

  26. ” ….. they’d be worrying about them listening to corrupting music and calling for that to be banned.”

    That cry is as old as civilisation.. 😉
    from 15thC commentaries , through early medieval correspondence, through the Roman Chroniclers, up to the old Greeks..
    Youf will find a way to irritate their parents through music and dance. It’s the most traditional form of rebellion of them all, and both sides hate this little fact pointed out to them..

  27. So Much For Subtlety

    Ian B – “You can reveal that somebody is secretly gay. Which are routinely published in the press and which nobody has ever considered making illegal.”

    Jason Donovan begs to differ.

    “It’s not about embarrassment. It’s just about creating new categories of porn, stoking up the “victimisation of women and girls” narrative and trying to control people.”

    No, it is about something that actually really hurts people and which most of us would prefer not to happen. And yes, these things really do affect children when they happen, and no, they should not happen.

    “Photos are often embarrassing, but I don’t see anyone demanding protection for the ugly yearbook photo people all over the internet.”

    If only they could. I am sure a lot of people would like that.

    Mr Ecks – “Who the hell has nudie pictures of themselves hanging around for “innocent”–ie non-sexual reasons? Unless to illustrate some sort of medical syndrome.”

    Perhaps. Perhaps they were sent for an entirely innocent but still sexual reason? You are like Ian – obsessed about a word without thinking about what was meant.

    “Can you imagine–outside of medicine –for what possible reason one person could “innocently” send another a nude selfie?”

    Look at my new swimsuit? There is a world of difference between a photo intended for a boyfriend and a photo that is spread all around the world. It is a shame neither of you can see that.

    Ian B – “Once nudity is normalised, there is no embarrassment to be had. Like teh gheys.”

    And so we are back to defining deviance down. Do you apply this same logic to rape and child sex abuse? If everyone does it, it is not abnormal after all. This is not a solution for any significant number of people.

    “Problem solved.”

    For various definitions of “solved”. And yet I still think that a girl who sends a photo, for whatever reason, to someone else only to find it all over the school is going to suffer for it. No matter how much you tell her that she should be proud to be a porn star.

  28. SMFS: Without wishing to be a pendant “Look at my new swimsuit?” is, by definition, not a nude selfie.

    There is no “innocent” way or pretext to be sending nude photos of oneself across the web. Anyone–of any age-doing so is an idiot at the very least.

  29. @ Ian B

    If it helps at all, everything that you’ve inferred I meant was to do with protecting girls was equally meant for protecting boys.

    Kids can be vicious little cunts whatever is in their pants.

    Those after the ‘right to be forgotten’ might well want to be able to make that yearbook photo illegal. But that’s irrelevant. Sexual photos of children are already illegal. They have been for a while. This is about finding a sensible way to exempt people who’ve broken that law in a manner entirely unconnected to it’s purpose.

  30. everything that you’ve inferred I meant was to do with protecting girls was equally meant for protecting boys.

    Not really. Even if you tack on “and boys” at the end, it’s all about girls isn’t it, really?

    Okay anyway, this is all really simple. The production of underage pornography is, everyone agrees, a very serious offence. Here we have apparently a situation in which underage girls are producing underage pornography. Now it so happens that they are above the age of criminal responsibility.

    So, prosecute the girls then. Problem solved. Why don’t you want to stop this thing at source?

  31. “Not really. Even if you tack on “and boys” at the end, it’s all about girls isn’t it, really”

    No.

  32. “So, prosecute the girls then. Problem solved. Why don’t you want to stop this thing at source?”

    I don’t want to prosecute anyone for the production of this particular class of ‘pornography’. I don’t consider it’s production, existence, or intended purpose to be a problem.

    I do, however, think that sharing/distribution of it IS a problem and anyone who does it should be made to realise that it’s unacceptable and an offence that can, if required, lead to criminal (or civil) sanctions.

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