There was a police guard posted outside of the home of the twins that were allegedly attacked by a fox. I commented at the time that this was utterly ridiculous and who possibly thought that was necessary or a good idea. It just proved to me that people were taking the whole extremely rare fox attack issue too seriously for its own good.
Foxes get a hard time. There isn’t a big movement out there that seems to actually like them and it’s a hard, short life for the average fox no matter where it lives. It got a whole lot harder for the urban fox a little earlier in the week when the Urban Fox Hunters posted a video of themselves pretty much lynching a fox on YouTube, Blogger and Facebook.
It was a grainy, horrible video on YouTube. The video was extremely brutal – it showed a fox eating dog food, laced with Xanex to stop it running away, and then clubbed to death by four masked men using cricket bats. It was so bad that it was later removed, from Facebook (home of the Raoul Moat is a Legend group) and YouTube (without Viacom being involved).
It was a very social media aware act of ultraviolent animal cruelty but isn’t everything on Facebook these days? The group, particularly a ringleader called “Lone Horseman” then defended their actions with comments like:
“I haven’t laughed so much since my brother fell off that roof,”
“So we cornered Mr Fox in a dark alley and we pummelled the s*** out of him. And boy do these vermin stink. It was f***ing awesome to get a kill – one down, several hundred to go!”
“This is NOT about inflicting pain or torture to an animal, but about ridding our neighbourhood of a pest.”
It was picked up by the Mail, the Mirror, the Guardian, the BBC, the Evening Standard, the Times, and was generally reported quite widely. The problem is that it was an elaborate hoax which was specifically supposed to show that the media would report anything with a fox in it no matter how ridiculous or untrue. Basically the moral of the story is that they indeed would. They made a video for the Guardian which makes good watching, particularly when you see just how scrappy the hoax really was – it turns out they were chasing a “fox” that was actually someone’s dog with a bushy tail taped a tail on it and the reason they used dog food was because a fox had managed to steal all the other bait they had with them.
The makers of both the hoax video and the making of the hoax video video did it to show the reality of fox hunting in light of the Government planning to give MPs a “free vote” – one where the whips don’t tell them what to vote – on the Hunting Act. I agree with their stance and the amount of horror that showing what killing a fox looks like generates shows the strength of opinion that exists on the other side of the issue. It seems clear that, no matter what you’ve been the paper for, we don’t want anything killed in that manner and no matter what class you are.
The film makers suggest that you should write to your MP to show your feelings on the possible repeal of the hunting act. I agree and I urge you to do this too.
Some good commentary (of course meaning it reflects what I think about the issue) is at the artoftheprank.