Here we go again! 2013 has arrived like a damp squib and no doubt wherever you read this grumpy diatribe there is cold rain lashing on the windows and wind whipping under the door.
For me, the New Year has been anticipated like a couple of hours of root canal work. I’m not feeling a lot of positivity in the world and judging by dreary Christmas telly schedules and drearier news from the retailers in the High Street, I don’t think anyone else is feeling too perky either. But it isn’t all gloom and doom.
Some have plans to brighten up your lives by trying to ensure that we can return to our country pursuits without let or hindrance from the law.
Yep, there is to be a concerted effort to get the ‘hunting with dogs’ laws repealed because apparently the vast majority of ‘country dwellers’ are up in arms at the disgraceful way we are prevented from allowing our precious hounds to torment foxes whilst we cavort on horseback like buffoons on a Victorian Christmas card. All red jackets and shiny boots. It must be pure misery for those of you sitting at home kicking your heels today when you ought to be out there kicking your horse and galloping after a terrified fox... my heart bleeds!
The huntsmen claim they go to strenuous efforts to ensure laws remain unbroken and they’ll carefully lay scent trails across farmland that keep dogs away from the foxes but if a fox is stupid enough to be out and about when Sir Dominic Chinless-Wonder and his horsey house guests are bolting full-tilt across the countryside he’ll have to take his chance if their paths should accidentally cross. Luckily, these people have a chance to legally feed their love of blood-letting with a day’s pheasant shooting and all across West Norfolk you’ll hear guns blazing as thousands of overfed, fat stupid beasts let off a bit of steam killing thousands of overfed fat stupid pheasants that are urged into the sky by beaters and condemned to fly into a hail of pellets, gunfire and dogs...” Such Fun”, as Miranda’s mum says!
Naturally, the police expect us all to obey the law of the land without exception but as so much of the fox hunting cruelty cases rely on complaints from the public and irrefutable evidence it seems to me that the police have abdicated all responsibility for pursuing these people and have left it to the RSPCA and The League Against Cruel Sports to fund the prosecutions.
Much is made of this by fox hunters who claim the time, effort and money it costs to mount these silly private prosecutions would have been better spent saving pussy cats...maybe they’re right.
I’m not sure, but do we have one law for upper crust landowners and another for the hoi polloi?
The Chief Constable and our own Police Commissioner would undoubtedly deny this but I bet that if you call the cops and tell them you’ve seen van loads of skanky oiks hare coursing you’ll have a panda car there in a flash but ring up and say you’ve seen the Chinless-Wonders and their friends killing foxes, they won’t be so keen to respond. One law?... why not test it! Tally Ho!