How to Bring Back the Hunt

First, establish in the common consciousness that they are vermin,
A scourge on our civilised way of life.
Point out that jobs depend on it,
That the route of the hunt is the road to recovery.
Explain that the years without the hunt brought
A resurgence of uncontrolled, destructive, anti-social villainy.
Circulate reports of their most savage crimes:
Stealing chickens for food, claiming rewards that are not rightfully theirs.
Deploy distressed householders, ugly photographs, shocking headlines and lurid editorial:
– invading our land and our homes!
– terrorising our communities!
– bleeding us dry!

Next, ignore or belittle the protests of their supporters.
They may block roads. They may sound horns to alarm and distract.
They may attempt to obstruct and stop the hunt.
Do not be deterred.
Call out your town criers to proclaim them extremists.
Summon your satirists to mock their disshevelled clothing and poor personal hygiene.
Contrast them to the good folk, who work hard and do not
Scavenge, steal or spill blood – who are not vermin.
Insist that There Is No Alternative.
Because if you do not hunt them,
– they will think themselves equal and entitled
– they will breed
– their way of life will spread.

Now you are ready to resume the hunt.
Gather your pack, salivating, panting clouds of
Hot, anticipatory breath into the pre-chilled air.
Lift your chin and blow your horn to
Muster your zealous fellows.
Put on your jacket, pull on your boots.
Ride in on your steed like a knight. A saviour.
Call to order.
Open your red box, raise your tweed
Cap their benefits, cut their credits
– close their services
– remove their rights
– redefine them as no longer poor.

And smear their blood on the faces of your children in celebration.

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