The next time a skeptic accuses me

The Mirror
The next time a skeptic accuses me…

The next time a skeptic accuses me of peddling a load of bull, I’m going to drag him to the field beside my house and point across the fence and say:

‘Look! There’s a real load of bull.’ The meadows round my home are owned by Reading University, who have placed traditional ‘Beware Of The Bull’ signs on every gate to warn walkers about their bovine behemoth. He’s a magnificent creature who appears to have walked straight out of a cave painting from 20,000 years ago. I tried to send him a telepathic message, but he’s much too placid to respond. I’ve been a vegetarian most of my adult life, so it’s hard for me to understand how anyone can eat any animal, but it seems utterly barbaric that this magnificent creature could be slaughtered for meat. Luckily for him, he’s probably much too valuable as a stud beast to be turned into Sunday roasts. Even more distasteful is the idea of bullfights. I was taken to one as part of some publicity tour. The horror of what was involved did not strike me until the spectacle began. A harmless, brave and beautiful animal was goaded into a frothing, terrified rage, before being tortured and ritually killed. And the people around me were applauding. I walked out. It went down badly with my Spanish hosts but I didn’t care. I demanded to know if the same people who cheered the matador would like to see a dog or a cat being stabbed to death. The British are often called a nation of animal lovers, but I think the truth is even better than that: Britons respect animals. A bullfight in this country would be unthinkable. It’s that same respect which prevents British supermarkets from selling horsemeat, which is considered a delicacy on the continent. That respect for life is one of the chief reasons I feel so much at home in this country. And I certainly respect the University bull. I won’t be walking my dogs across his field!


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