Friday, December 29, 2006

The success of the ban on hunting with hounds

Before the ban on hunting with hounds, we were told the law was illiberal because it would destroy hunts, put people out of work and take away the liberty of people to enjoy hunting.

Now we are told that the law has failed because it has not destroyed hunts, not put people out of work and has not taken away the liberty of people to enjoy hunting.

Huh?! Have I missed something?!

Could it be that the law is actually successful because it has precisely excised the one practice which was objectionable - specifically the tearing apart of foxes by hounds - while leaving untouched the unobjectionable elements such as riding out with hounds, following scents etc etc?


So all those people who said that the campaign for a ban was a class prejudice thing, are actually left with rather a denuded argument, are they not? The social activity of hunting has been left untouched, save for the actual tearing apart of the fox by hounds.

All those who said that the ban would allow a conversion of hunts to drag or trail hunting have been proved right.


  1. For many it was purely a class thing.

    The tearing apart of foxes by hounds was uncommon to begin with (whilst the foxes were alive at least) and legislation could have been enacted to ban that rather than the whole practice (and others).

    Its an illiberal law because it infringes on personal freedom, it is a bad law because it is a byzantine mess put together as a sop to the 'class warriors' in Labour.

    Its a failing law because it is not doing what it is supposed to do.

    I don't mind people arguing against hunting (I myself would not partake in the sport) but to use coercion to ban something which harms no other human on the basis of animal rights and class war is illiberal.

  2. Thanks for your comment. Why is it illiberal, Tristan? What is the law stopping? People still hunt - trail/drag hunting or flushing out the fox with hounds and then shooting it. People can still watch the hunt. The whole sporting and scoial activity is intact save one thing which isn't a sporting or social activity - the tearing apart of the fox by hounds.

    So, it seems to me that all that the law has stopped, which is what I thought it was meant to do, is the practice of the fox being torn apart by hounds. Or is there a major difference between "flushing out with hounds" and "hunting with hounds" that I am missing?

    Is it illiberal to have some sort of balance between human rights and animal rights?