Animal welfare an election issue
An Irish hunting organisation has recently claimed that Fine Gael leader, Enda Kenny, has given a commitment that if his party gets into government, they will not restrict or ban hunting.
This organisation claims that "Enda Kenny gave a solemn commitment to all the hunting associations, when he met them on 20 April 2005 in the offices of the Irish Coursing Club in Clonmel, that Fine Gael would not in government agree to the introduction of restrictions or bans on hunting."
Should this be correct then it would appear that Fine Gael are leaving themselves open to the charge that they are out of touch with the view of most decent Irish people who support efforts to remove the evil that is live hunting and live hare coursing from our society.
A recent opinion poll show that 68 per cent of people in the Irish Republic want a ban on live hare coursing with 72 per cent of respondents condemning it as cruel.
It is against this backdrop the political parties must view the issue of bloodsports. There is a huge constituency out there that want politicians to act on animal rights/welfare issues.
The 2007 election presents an opportunity for those who care about the non-human members of society to quiz election candidates in relation to their views about animal rights/welfare issues.
If you care about animal rights/welfare you should make it a doorstep election issue. Remember animals cannot vote, you can, make it count for them.
John Tierney, Campaigns Director-Association of Hunt Saboteurs, PO Box 4734 Dublin 1. www.huntsabsireland.org