Activist's Harsh Sentence Shines Spotlight on England's "Medieval" Badger Cull
By Donny Moss / theirturn.net
Jan 22, 2015

Jay Tiernan, a leader in the fight to stop the killing of wild badgers in England, has received a six month suspended jail sentence and up to $83,000 in fines for breaching a court order brought by cattle farmers who support the “badger cull.”  According to The Guardinan, “the breaches ranged from filming someone involved in the cull” to “protesting outside an National Farmers’ Union (NFU) office wearing a FCK NFU T-shirt” to “failing to pass on details of the injunction to other protesters.” Notably, the judge said that Mr. Tiernan is “a man of good character” and that his “breaches did not involve any violence or damage to property.”

Activist Jay Tiernan has a strong message for the National Farmers' Union (photo: The Guardian)

Activist Jay Tiernan has a strong message for the National Farmers’ Union (photo: The Guardian)

While the ruling represents a serious infringement on free speech and imposes an insurmountable financial burden on Mr. Teirnan, it does shine a much-needed international spotlight on the badger cull and is serving to unify the large community of people who oppose the killing.

European badgerEuropean badger

Supporters of the badger cull claim that the extermination is necessary to control bovine tuberculosis (TB), which, they say, threatens their cattle.

Opponents of the cull argue that killing is the wrong approach for many reasons:

  • A large, scientific study has demonstrated that killing badgers makes “no meaningful contribution to the control of bovine TB.”
  • Wildlife should not have to pay the price for cheap food produced through environmentally destructive factory farming, which is how TB was introduced to wildlife.
  • More frequent testing of cattle and cattle movement controls are addressing the problem in neighboring Wales.

Brian May of the band Queen protests the badger cull in 2013 (photo: The Mirror)Brian May of the band Queen protests the badger cull in 2013 (photo: The Mirror)

Badgers are a protected species in England, and the government-sanctioned campaign to slaughter them in certain areas has generated backlash not only from veteran animal rights activists and “hunt saboteurs” but also from people who live in or near the killing zones.

In 2013, a reporter with the Guardian filmed Mr. Tiernan “engaging in guerrilla-style tactics” to prevent marksmen from shooting badgers. He also speaks to less confrontational protesters who are stunned by the high level of secrecy surrounding the cull.

Your Turn

Please consider supporting Jay Tiernan.

3.8 ·
1
Related Films
Save The Badger Badger Badger
1 min Perhaps the maddest PSA ever produced. Internet phenomenon, the Badger, Badger, Badger song, is remade for the campaign to stop the proposed cull of badgers in Britain. In...
Stop the Badger Cull
2 min The government has announced that the badger cull will go ahead, and is likely to start on June 1st. This is despite many eminent scientists and wildlife experts opposing the...
Trending Today
It’s Time for a National $15 Minimum Wage
Bernie Sanders and Patty Murray7,604 views today ·
Aid in Reverse: How Poor Countries Develop Rich Countries
Jason Hickel3,113 views today ·
10 Films That Make It Easy to See How Our Economy Is Killing the Planet
Tim Hjersted2,309 views today ·
The Impossible Hamster
1 min1,906 views today ·
The Top 100 Documentaries We Can Use to Change the World
Films For Action1,676 views today ·
50 Eco-Conscious Documentaries to Celebrate Earth Day (That You Can Watch Online)
Films For Action1,201 views today ·
Get Out of the Materialism Trap NOW
10 min1,103 views today ·
Defiance in the Face of Oppression - Iranian Artist Atena Farghadani Defends the Right to Draw
Gavin Aung Than942 views today ·
The Top 100 Documentaries Inspiring the Shift to a Sustainable Paradigm (2012 Edition)
Films For Action932 views today ·
Load More
What's Next
Stop the Badger Cull
2 min
Farmer John Protest and Arrest!
6 min
The Ghosts in Our Machine (trailer)
3 min
Like us on Facebook?
Activist's Harsh Sentence Shines Spotlight on England's "Medieval" Badger Cull