BY NIGEL BEAN & PAUL READ
The antis have always been vicious and nasty – their comments vile. Just ask anyone involved in field sports. You get called a paedophile, pervert, sadist, psychopath and much more – although you do wonder how much of the insulting amounts to mere projection.
Admittedly tensions were running high on both sides at the annual meet for the Carmarthenshire Hunt group on New Year’s Day as hunters and animal rights groups clashed. Wales Online reports that “hundreds were in attendance at the event in the Guildhall Square for the Carmarthenshire Hunt Club’s Meet which has been an annual tradition since the club’s formation in 1889. Supporters and protesters filled the square whilst riders paraded through the town with a number of hounds.”
Lucy O’Neill was walking through the town and says she heard aggressive language: “I honestly couldn’t believe what I was hearing: people were screaming the most awful things at each other, it was quite shocking. The ‘c’ word was being thrown about even when there were children there.”
Simon Welch, another onlooker, said: “It was disgusting and coming from the mouths of adults I heard ‘I hope your kids get cancer’ being cheered. What kind of world is this when people say that?”
Well, Mr Welch, it is a world in which the antis value animal life above that of their fellow human beings. It is a world where centuries of tradition get brainwashed out of people by a two minute faked video on Facebook showing antis pretending to be hunters. It is a world where antis always existed but now – if anyone is bloodthirsty – it is the antis, who scream for hunters’ deaths like members of some crazed and sinister cult.
This war of attrition is no longer a class war, if it ever was. Be sure that the protesters are more middle class than most on the hunting side these days. The fight is more a culture war – brainwashed, progressive puritans versus those who perpetuate tradition and bind the countryside during meets into one, like no other sport has been able to do since – not even football.
We have warned on several occasions how the antis are getting worse – their insults and their rage. We have warned how there will soon be a human death because of their puppeteers’ brazen marketing strategies, which are designed to fill accounts rather than focusing first on human consequences. Who will then have blood on their hands?
It is not the hunters’ faces that appear on extremist databases. It is not the hunters who wear the balaclavas. Education can only go so far in turning hotheads into those willing to sit down and discuss hunting with hunting communities. In this climate have no doubt that we are at war – one the hunters and the police don’t want. Who is going to end it before the antis go too far?