Male risk-taking

There seems to be something inescapably testosterone-fuelled about the SNP’s campaign to separate Scotland from the 
rest of the UK. There’s a particularly male element of risk-taking dominating it.

On any level-headed analysis, leaving the UK is an insanity for Scottish voters: the risks are staggeringly great and threaten every element of our lives. But that particularly male drive to gamble, and to leap into the unknown – if only to see what’s there – might explain why many ordinarily sane people nonetheless plan to vote Yes.

Women have been polled as much less likely to vote for independence. This must surely be linked to a lower propensity for competitive – even compulsive – risk-taking.

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Perhaps the dose of reality that Yes voters need is less the technocratic logic of Alastair Darling than the sensible advice of a more calm-headed sister, mother, wife or girlfriend.

This decision needs to be taken with a calm head in the cold of the morning, not in the shouting atmosphere of a boys’ night out.

John Shields

Avochie, Huntly