I had been warned by readers that the anti-hunt contingent were aggressive and incapable of civilised conversation. Still, I reached out, as this magazine is neither pro-hunt nor anti – it is a platform for the countryside, which includes many anti-hunt rural dwellers as well as those who back hunting, and fence-sitters who have little if anything to do with it.
There were three exceptions – a kind lady who wrote a polite email explaining she understood both sides of the argument and came under attack from both sides:
“I do not agree with blood “sports” they are something like many OLD traditions that should be left in the past, they are out dated and cruel and are NOT a good form of pest control at all. They also often result in non target animals also being killed (yes I’m also one of those who has lost a pet cat to hunting hounds out of control baying for blood) so I do not agree with his so called sport at all. I’m also a follower of the good book so taking life should not be something of enjoyment so there for I can not agree with hunting as a sport, hunting for food, and shooting things to protect your livestock and crops this is a necessity but should not be a sport. And for THAT view of understanding farmers need to protect their livestock and crops I come under fire from the Anti’s.”
And a tweet of a promise of an article from someone called Lou, which we look forward to receiving (although I am told “Hashman Joe” mentioned in Lou’s tweet below is a convicted grave desecrator – it’s not every day one stumbles across one of those. Yikes):
Along with a pat on the back from someone named Claire:
Apart from those three positive responses, there were dozens of insults – some which merited a temporary block on Twitter. The antis who openly call themselves sabs seemed more bothered by our choice of photograph, which apparently shows a pro-hunt agitator threatening sabs. (Since I really don’t give a damn which side is dressing in the black garb of IRA cowards – and think the balaclava’d extremists in this battle to be just as childish and pathetic as each other – the photo choice is utterly irrelevant). The antis used the photo choice as a distraction – they failed to offer any rights to reply for existing articles in CSM from pro hunt writers. And – as I am personally a neutral in the debate – they made me tend to agree with the pro hunt people I have met, who argue that the sabs are incapable of civilised debate, preferring to obfuscate and cheat their way out of factual arguments.
All in all, my intervention was almost a complete failure, although I am chuffed to have gone on record as an editor who has reached out and proven that this magazine is neither pro or anti hunting – Country Squire Magazine is a platform and those who are scared to use it thus are nothing more than yellow-bellied sissies.
While the hunting debate continues to rage across the UK, I’d be happy for both sides to submit their arguments and counter-arguments to Country Squire Magazine. We’ll publish what we can without becoming a hunting slanging match. You have my email:
In the meantime I leave both sides with this thought:
Those who are yet to be convinced tend to sway towards those who are calm in arguing. Those with the loudest voices give the impression of covering cracks in their arguments and muddying waters.
Country Squire Magazine looks forward to receiving your submissions. Memento componere aequus.