Login Register

Hunt fans told: 'Get into the real world'

By This is Cornwall  |  Posted: November 04, 2009

Minister tells hunt fans: 'Get into the real world'
Comments (0)

A WAR of words erupted last night over the future of the ban on hunting with dogs.

Labour's rural affairs minister Dan Norris claimed hunt supporters who wanted to see the law repealed had to "get into the real world", with public opposition to the sport on the rise.

But the Countryside Alliance accused Mr Norris of ignoring the Government's own evidence that hunting was not cruel, and suggested he was only a minister because Gordon Brown had "scraped the bottom of the barrel".

The issue of foxhunting has soared up the political agenda since the Conservatives confirmed that if they won the next election, they would use Government time to hold a vote on repealing the 2005 Hunting Act.

The Government has seized on the plan as proof the Tories are out of touch with modern Britain, and hope to rally support in favour of keeping the ban to secure a fourth Labour term.

Click here to read Matt Chorley's latest blog

Mr Norris suggested those campaigning for a change in the law were ignoring "increasing" levels of opposition to the "cruel" sport. He claimed the pro-hunt Countryside Alliance had "got it completely wrong" in suggesting the ban would lead to a loss of rural industry jobs.

"Everyone knows that the ban was never intended to stop people from the enjoyment of riding horses with hounds in the beautiful countryside. It was intended to stop the cruel ripping to pieces of foxes by dogs, as cheering blood-hungry hunters urged them on," Mr Norris told the Fox In Parliament campaign website.

He accused the Countryside Alliance of "distorting the truth for their own ends", claiming their objective was "legalising the cruelty of killing foxes for fun".

In a provocative attack on all hunt supporters, he added: "I offer pro-hunters this tip if they really seeking the truth: Get out in the real world, stop just talking to those who hunt, and ask ordinary people their views. They would then know loud and clear the opposition to the cruelty they seek is increasing."

However, the Countryside Alliance hit back, accusing Mr Norris of being out of touch and claiming Labour were destined to lose the next election.

Tim Bonner, head of media at the Countryside Alliance, said: "It is sad an MP who sat through the endless debates on hunting – and who has now been scraped from the bottom of the barrel to serve as a Defra minister – cannot even recall the findings of his own Government's inquiry into hunting with dogs.

"Its chairman, Lord Burns, confirmed to the House of Lords that there was no evidence that hunting was cruel.

"Being lectured by a member of the current Government on the 'real world' is a badge of honour – perhaps if Mr Norris joined it, he would understand why he is a member of the most unpopular Government of modern times which trails in the wake of a party committed to repealing the Hunting Act."

The row is almost certainly a sign the arguments over the merits of the ban are likely to be no less heated or personal than in Parliament five years ago.

At the weekend, at the start of the new hunting season, pro-hunt campaigners were in buoyant mood that a change in government would secure a law change.

Gill Sumersgill, secretary of the Dulverton Farmers Hunt, said supporters were "keeping fingers crossed" that the Tories would reverse the ban.

Do you have something to say? Leave your comment here...

max 4000 characters
  • Profile image for This is Cornwall
    Charles Henry 1945-(diuturnity), Somersetshire  |  November 12 2009, 10:45AM

    :( And they keep on making women of Cherie Blair's ilk, Chief Constables Jeremy! . . It's call 'Common Purpose'. . YOU COULDN'T MAKE IT UP!

    Rate 0
    Report
  • Profile image for This is Cornwall
    Jeremy, U.S.A.  |  November 11 2009, 10:44PM

    I love this sort of thing. All of you that are so against gun ownership or the common hunter who enjoys the hunt and harvest are so controlled this is great. The reason this is so great your country has become such an example of why there needs to be firearms and the ownership there of. See your shinning increased crime rate and violent crimes increase helps the rest of the World understand why my Country clings to their guns. Keep up the poor work, it's entertaining.

    Rate 0
    Report
  • Profile image for This is Cornwall
    John, Pensacola, Fl USA  |  November 11 2009, 9:31PM

    I feel for you poor people in GB. You have allowed these people to scare the public into control, and our guns are gone. They will probably be gone forever, as the powers that be will never allow a return to normalcy. They can't, it would be their undoing. Good Luck.

    Rate 0
    Report
  • Profile image for This is Cornwall
    Rick A Hyatt, saratoga, wy, usa  |  November 11 2009, 7:26AM

    I suggest you all go on a vegetarian lifestyle, as has been recently suggested by PETA. The trouble is that I find is illegal to get such a permit, and to hunt them at all. Besides, they all seem to live i California, and make very little game at all. Perhaps waiting for CHICOM "Soylent Green" will be a better answer to wold hunger.

    Rate 0
    Report
  • Profile image for This is Cornwall
    Dan Kjer, Minnesota, USA  |  November 09 2009, 5:49PM

    @Freethinker 80 million gun owners in the USA. 5 million concealed weapon holders on the books. And you think our gun rights are threatened? DC, Milwaukee, and Chicago are high crime and homicide cities. Guess what? They are gun ban cities and our Supreme Court is now passing law to make it unconstitutional due to 2nd amendment definition. IThe court already did in DC vs Heller. Last study I read the UK wasn't doing good. Nor Australia. Crime is up 44% since their gun ban. Wonder if you can see the correlation. Funny thing. Switzerland has virtually no crime. The Swiss are required into military service and when they accomplish that service they are required to keep their military weapons. See the correlation yet? Didn't think so. You don't want to. The operative word in GUN CONTROL is control. It doesn't matter what side of the big water you are on for interpretation. When America got hit at Pearl Harbor did you ever wonder why the most powerful Navy in the world didn't didn't just keep coming and hit the American mainland? It was because the Imperial commander studied in the US and he knew that virtually every household was armed. 80 million gun owners makes a pretty formidable army. And yes. We know how to use them. We are talking instant army. We thank our forefathers for not having to eat sushi. The Obama threat to gun owners? He is no threat. I wish he would threaten the gun owner. The middle of the fence gun owner would give strength to vote him out. America has not taken one parcel of land in conflict. We only asked for enough land to bury our dead. The lion's share of us entered the conflicts well prepared for using weapons. We don't hunt fox with dogs. We bag them and leave them lay. Same for wild cats and raccoons. Sound inhumane? Ask the first pheasant or partridge you run into. No one, not anyone, better touch our eagle. There will be 80 million with a fight in hand.

    Rate 0
    Report
  • Profile image for This is Cornwall
    Charles Henry 1945-(diuturnity), Somersetshire  |  November 08 2009, 5:37PM

    :( Get the Editor to email his partner quick someone! . . She's the only one who knows how to control him. . Theo have you a any of your mushrooms spare you could send him?

    Rate 0
    Report
  • Profile image for This is Cornwall
    Charles Henry 1945-(diuturnity), Somersetshire  |  November 08 2009, 5:35PM

    :(

    Rate 0
    Report
  • Profile image for This is Cornwall
    Freethinker, Cornwall  |  November 08 2009, 3:12PM

    Keep your guns by all means, but hunting of wild animals must stop. I'm off to buy a sick bag. All of this Charles Henry worship makes me want to vomit. The ego rules supreme with you Charles. Freethinker

    Rate 0
    Report
  • Profile image for This is Cornwall
    Charles Henry 1945-(diuturnity), Somersetshire  |  November 08 2009, 12:32PM

    :( Thankyou Anon UK. . I only wish everyone felt the same way. . I really don't understand it . . Best Charles

    Rate 0
    Report
  • Profile image for This is Cornwall
    Anon, UK  |  November 08 2009, 9:37AM

    Charles Henry You are 'priceless'. Please don't ever change.........

    Rate 0
    Report

      YOUR COMMENTS AWAITING MODERATION

       
       

      MORE NEWS HEADLINES

       
       
       

      MOST POPULAR