Jockeys, horses, Police & Protestors – The Grand National 2023

Today was the 175th Grand National horse race at Aintree, I know I am old because I still enjoy and support the running of this horse race. One horse sadly died during the race and 118 people were arrested who attempted to stop the race from going ahead. I did not enjoy the actual race this year as I was quite fearful of the risk to jockeys, horses, protestors and police had a protestor tried to take matters into their own hands and run on the course in an attempt to stop it during the running of the race. This would have been a sad and sickly sight with potential fatalities’ that would make news all around the world all for the wrong reason.  

Protestors at this years race

These protestors have decided they are hell bent now and at future race meetings aiming to stop this event by breaking in to the event on mass and trying to chain themselves to race course jumps fences in order to prevent the event from going ahead. We live in a democracy where we can without harm to ourselves or others say and do what we like. But we should not and cannot aim to inflict or forcefully implement our views onto others.

If the law makers that we vote in decided that something is wrong, immoral or cruel and we need to stop doing it,  then the legal process to stop doing the said event or activity is there and would result in something that the people as a majority do not want to happen to stop. But in no democracy should the will of a few be forced onto the many. To my mind when you say people no longer have a freedom of choice your moving swiftly into the realms of a form of fascism and totalitarianism, where you are not free to think or do things for yourself because someone else is telling you how to think and what to do and I am very strongly opposed to that kind of control, without dam good reason.

There are reasons that I can think of where people’s rights to do something should be restricted and the majority of the population did agree in this country with that restriction and that time was with gun control legislation. It is one of the greatest successes in legislation in the UK to my mind because of how many lives have potentially been saved.

But there are things that I still think we have a choice to do such as eat a beef burger or watch a horse race. Some people are passionate about the idea that I have no right to eat certain animal and fish based foods and I am also no longer able to watch horses racing at Aintree. If a utopian view of veganism was adopted overnight I would dread to see what a vegan Britain would look like and also how the vegan police would enforce and prosecute those that broke the new vegan based societal rules.

Also if animals in the countryside were no longer being farmed for their meat does this mean that there would no longer be profit or a point in looking after any domesticated animals in the countryside. What would be the point of keeping an unmilked cow or an unprofitable pig. The domesticated animal market would be dead overnight if a vegan utopia was adopted. Would we also be arresting and jailing those that continue to trying to eat meat or race horses over fences.

Well we could reintroduce rewilding which I am a huge believer in and I worked for a charity called Moor Trees as a Trustee for a number of years that works towards the rewilding of Dartmoor to a woodland and more natural environment, this is a wonderful concept and one which for many areas of the world I fully support. But a wild environment is no utopia in itself, its wild, no vets and pretty bleak and brutal at times. The natural environment is a wonder awe-inspiring place but there is no such thing as a clean death in nature or a wonderful life in the wild.

A wild environment is not some giant entertainment centre for a vegan to play and populate the planet from. Its wild, brutal and potential deadly environment to live, survive and thrive within. The domestication of plant and animal life has happened over thousands of years for very good reason. Because a wild natural environment is a brutal and repressive place to live it’s no Disney movie or fantasy play ground and often this is ignored or overlooked by vegan society advocates. You have more chance of being a happy, safe and sheltered vegan by being plugged into a computer and playing on your favourite games than you do by being at one with a completely wild environment.

Whose Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses – U2