|THE THINGS THEY SAY
This article by Alistair McConnachie was published in "This Green and Unpleasant Land" a Sovereignty Special Report distributed free with the April 2001 issue.
Below: Alistair McConnachie addresses an anti-cull public meeting at The Mound, Edinburgh, on 20 May 2001. Organisers Peter Neilson and Sylvia Loch are on the right of the picture, and Sheila Bell is holding a placard.
"I understand that you're moved by all this, but I live in the city. How does this affect me?"
"Look at all the other people who have lost their jobs. Farmers
didn't care when people in this mining/steelworking community lost their
jobs, so why should we care when people in the farming community lose
Farmers, and their supporters, also need to avoid language or arguments which attempt to make the claim that, unlike agriculture, the mining and steel-working industries were somehow irrelevant, defunct and unnecessary to Britain's future. Similarly, arguments which attempt to make a distinction between "militant" unions and their own should be avoided. Such language is guaranteed, obviously, to lose them the support of the people who could be their friends. It is the similarities between people in the agricultural industry and the people in heavy industry which should be emphasised, not the presumed differences.
Below: Some of the protestors at the Edinburgh demonstration.
"We have to wipe out this disease so we never have it here
Birds can migrate and cross the channel and therefore, in effect, it is not possible to contain the virus. These outbreaks can therefore happen at any time, and anywhere, and another outbreak will come eventually, regardless of how we may try to prevent it. You can't fight nature!
"We have to stop it now or wild animals, for example, deer, may
catch it and then, oh gosh, we'll never get rid of it."
"It would be a disaster if it were to spread"
For example, Henry Hamilton wrote a pamphlet in 1967 recounting how, as herd manager on the Duke of Westminster's estate in the 1922-24 outbreak, he successfully nursed the herd through the outbreak. Those animals afflicted were simply isolated, kept as clean as possible, and treated with both salty water and Stockholm tar, a lotion used on most animal wounds. In other words, they were cured by the application of basic animal husbandry techniques. (See Charles Clover, "Old cowmen's cure saved duke's pedigree herd", The Daily Telegraph, 21-3-01, p. 6) and posted here.
Furthermore, only by letting the disease run its course, will the animals develop immunity. Infections are more serious in man and animals when introduced into a virgin population, that is, one that has never experienced that particular microbe. Normal populations which have been exposed to diseases, even serious ones, are likely to be more resistant to them and better equipped to overcome them. The present policy ensures that we keep virgin populations of animals which, never having met the disease, are always going to be susceptible.
Below: Protestors prepare to join hands for a moment's reflection on the needless destruction and waste.
Moreover, it is not accurate to presume that many of the animals being slaughtered are going to be slaughtered forthwith. For example, Suckler Beef cows, that is, cows which give birth yearly in completely natural conditions, to calves which are fattened and eventually sold for slaughter, will usually live for around 10 years themselves - although 14 years is not uncommon, and some reach 20 years, giving birth to new life every year. Unfortunately, modern dairy cows, on the other hand, are usually subject to fairly intensive conditions and rarely last beyond 7 years old. Breeding ewes have 8 years ahead of them.
"You need to examine your conscience if you are trying to
prevent this slaughter process."
The people who need to "examine their consciences" are those who are destroying the lives, livelihoods and life's work of people throughout Britain.
Below: Clarissa Dickson Wright argues for vaccination and an end to the needless killing.
He also stated that if a vaccinated animal becomes infected and becomes a carrier then it is extremely unlikely that it would pass on the virus to other animals. Many attempts to infect animals by bringing them into contact with carrier animals have failed and he knows of only one case!
That also bears out the finding of the 1968 Official Report into the 1967 outbreak. That report concurred with the earlier Gower Report of the 1950s that: 'slaughter is a crude and primitive way of dealing with the disease.'
And the 1968 report emphasised that 'the danger of carrier animals had been exaggerated and that carriers in a susceptible population did not constitute a significant risk'.
"After all the pain and anguish the farmers have been
through, to introduce vaccination now would be a betrayal of all
those farmers who have sacrificed stock, in order to stop the
disease without resorting to vaccination."
It is also a misrepresentation to suggest that farmers have "sacrificed" their stock in order to try to eradicate this disease. A sacrifice is something done willingly. In the face of a massive abuse of state power, the farmers have had no alternative.
"This is a very dangerous disease"
How many animals have died of Foot and Mouth in Britain in this present outbreak? Not a single one! No animals have died of Pan Asian Foot and Mouth in Britain. However, well over a million have been killed as a direct result of government policy. So, I ask you: which is the bigger killer - Foot and Mouth disease, or government policy?