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04-13-08, 02:37 PM #1
Sheep shearing contest banned at county show in Britain because animal welfare activists say clippers harm the sheep
For years, enthusiasts have flocked to see a county's traditional sheepshearing competition.
They are enthralled by the skill and dexterity of operators in removing fleeces in as little as two minutes.
But now the event has been scrapped ... because anti-cruelty activists claim the ewes and rams could be hurt by the electric clippers that are used.
One protester declared: "Sheep have rights too."
The annual contest was one of the most popular parts of the three- day Kent County Show held in Detling, near Maidstone, each July.
It involved shearers from as far away as Australia and New Zealand competing to see who could remove the fleece from a sheep in the fastest time possible.
But, following the protests, the event has been scrapped from the line-up this year, infuriating many in the local agricultural community.
Farmer Tony Mowbray said: "This is just complete madness. Shearers are trained professionals.
"Of course sheep get the odd nick, but it's ridiculous to stop that from being shown to the public to protect their sensibilities.
"I have never in my life heard of such a thing. What sort of message does this send? Are we now supposed to not shear flocks and let their coats grow out of control?"
Another farmer, Hugh Skinner, of Sissinghurst, Kent, said: "I just think it is another example of the public being separated from what goes on in the countryside.
Sheep breeder Lester Gosbee said: "It is a great shame, because the competition shows people how quickly sheep are shorn.
"Occasionally they do get the odd nick, but never enough to need stitches."
The show organisers, the Kent County Agricultural Society, said the contest was scrapped after members of the public complained about how the sheep were treated.
Showground manager David Goff confirmed that people worried about the treatment of sheep had voiced concerns.
He added: "When I said I used to teach sheep shearing, I said it was a bit like men shaving. But members of the public don't understand.
One animal rights activist, who did not want to be named, said: "Sheep have rights too. I thought it was cruel, so complained. A lot of people agreed with me." .
The RSPCA said it backs scrapping the Kent contest.
Julia Wrathall, from the charity's farm animal department said: "If you are going to shear a sheep, it should be on its home farm where there would be enough time to do the job without worrying about the speed aspect.
"If you bring speed into it, you may sacrifice care and quality and we would have genuine concerns."
Last updated at 22:41pm on 11th April 2008
Fleeced: A shearer at work
04-13-08, 02:45 PM #2
Ok, so you get a 55 gallon drum of Nair and just dip them instead... NOT. I hate how disconnected people have gotten from the origins of the things they use everyday. Start sending kids out to work on the farms for a few summers when growing up, and at least most of these ill informed, ignorance based protests would dry up.\\` ` ` ` < ` )___/\
`` ` ` ` (3--(____)
"...but to forget your duck, of course, means you're really screwed." - Gary Larson
04-13-08, 03:17 PM #3
That's it, I'm suing my barber.
"The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money."
- Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America
Tell me not, Sweet, I am unkind,
That from the nunnery
Of thy chaste breast and quiet mind
To war and arms I fly. - Lovelace
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04-13-08, 04:06 PM #4
A ban on wool coats can't be far behind - Ok, I'll wear my leather coat with the fur-lined collar
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04-13-08, 04:17 PM #5
Idiots. That's all. Just. Idiots.Pleasing nobody, one person at a time.
That which does not kill me, better start fucking running.
If I lived every day like it was my last, the body count would be staggering.
I intend to go in harm's way. -John Paul Jones
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04-13-08, 07:04 PM #6
Well since the sheering competition is done........How about some chops?
Meanwhile, fishing in Russia:
"When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it." -- Frederic Bastiat
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04-13-08, 07:15 PM #7*************************"It wouldn't take much for me to up and run...to another life somewhere in the sun."*************************"There's something inherently wrong with having to put on a bullet-proof vest and a gun to go to work."-(An old friend)
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