Comment and analysis by Leicester Green Party, and its fellow-travellers
Hopefully readers of this blog will have heard about the proposed amendments to the Hunting Act 2004. You can read them here. Yesterday volunteers from the League Against Cruel Sports Midlands Group were voicing concerns about these amendments in central Leicester, because we believe this to be a cynical neutering of the entire Act without actually repealing it. It doesn’t matter if the Countryside Alliance & Conservative MP’s favouring traditional fox hunting repeatedly claim that this isn’t a repeal & that hunting with dogs will remain illegal. If the amendments go through, hunts will be able to enjoy a range of deceitful excuses for using a full pack of hounds.
They can claim it is for flushing to a waiting gun in keeping with Scottish law, although very recently half of the registered Scottish hunts were found to be ignoring this law and continuing to hunt for sport as they always have done. They can claim it is for ‘research’, just as Japanese whalers do. They can claim, strangely, that it is for ‘rescuing’ injured or diseased animals – how odd that no wildlife hospitals use this method for retrieving the animals they care for. Given that they have exploited any loopholes they can for the past decade, is it any wonder that a wide range of organisations & individuals are appalled by this proposal?
It’s no surprise to me personally that this sly method is being employed to get the blood-sport lobby what they want; deceit is central to their campaign and their arguments are not to be trusted. They pretend that their activity is fox control. Who actually believes this? Time & time again the breeding & encouraging of foxes by registered hunts is discovered and explanations of this are avoided as in the recent interview with Tim Bonner (Campaigns Director for the Countryside Alliance) who conveniently dodged the question about the 16 fox cubs kidnapped for cruelty.
The amendments should be opposed by all compassionate members of society & you can express your opposition in many ways. Write to your MP’s via the League Against Cruel Sports asking them to attend the debate and represent your views, join the protests in London on Tuesday & Wednesday or sign one or all of the online petitions (see here, here & here). The majority of the public are opposed to hunting foxes, hares & deer in this manner; our parliamentary representatives need to realise this and act accordingly.