Theresa May has announced she intends to legalise fox-hunting in the UK. For those unaware of this ‘tradition’, I’m not referring to men in coonskin hats crouching in the bushes with rifles. If we were talking about just shooting the fox that raids your chicken coop, there would be no issue.
No. I’m talking about the blood-sport that is fox-hunting: the social gatherings of England’s elite, trotting through the countryside, enjoying the pleasant weather…and participating in animal cruelty of the highest order. The hunters take their time, stretching out the hunt for as long as possible. The fox is pursued to exhaustion. At last, when the fox can go no further, the hunters set their terriers upon it – ripping it apart, piece by piece, while the toffs laugh and watch on. First-time hunters smear the dead creature’s blood on their faces: children are indoctrinated into the ‘sport’ this way, implicated in the savage cruelty as a parent rubs still-warm blood around their eyes.
Fox-hunting is a regression into a cruel, colonial past. The fact that so many UK politicians want a return to this tradition is shocking to say the least. But Theresa May’s support of their savagery speaks of a deeper, fundamental problem in British democracy: first and foremost, politicians serve politicians, not the wider public. Prime Ministers must tread a line between what people actually need, and what politicians want. If they fail this balancing-act, they will meet with betrayal after betrayal even within their own party.
The British political system is back-stabbing, self-serving, and often completely out-of-touch with actual democracy.
The public does not want or need fox-hunting. The only thing it serves is politicians’ desire for a savage outlet. If fox-hunting is brought back, British politics will draw even further away from the needs of the people.