Time to turn our backs on politicians

Local greyhound training ranks thinning, but the Donegal Dynamo provides plenty to get excited about, writes Joe Carroll

It’s time we turned our backs on politicians who back organised animal cruelty masquerading as 'sport', says a Longford Leader reader

What an out-and-out shocker the RTE Investigates programme on the greyhound industry was:

Thousands of Irish greyhounds culled every year due to massive over-breeding...scenes of distressing inhumanity as dogs were shot at knackeries for as little as 10 euro per animal...greyhounds with their ears burned off by acid to avoid identification, greyhounds doped to the eyeballs to make them run faster…and footage of an unfortunate greyhound not killed outright, writhing in its agony as its collar is returned to its owner who was about to drive away, having dropped off another unwanted or underperforming greyhound to its grim fate.

And then we were reminded that hare coursing, banned almost everywhere else, is part of our greyhound industry.

Aside from being inherently cruel (it involves setting up hares as live bait for pairs of dogs), it turns out, as revealed in the programme, that well-known coursing officials have attended "unregulated" coursing fixtures held on Whiddy Island, with footage showing a ferry packed with coursing fans and their greyhounds heading to the event.

Let's not forget that Government and Fianna Fáil politicians now wringing their hands in disgust and revulsion in response to the RTE programme all voted against the 2016 Bill proposing a ban on hare coursing AND in favour of the lavish state funding of the greyhound racing/hare baiting racket.

Greyhound and hare alike should be given their freedom. It’s time we turned our backs on politicians who back organised animal cruelty masquerading as 'sport'.

Thanking you,
John Fitzgerald

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