Four people were arrested early on Tuesday morning during a police operation covering the badger cull protests in Gloucestershire.
The people arrested were two 46-year-old women, a 23-year-old man and a 34-year-old woman, who was suspected to be carrying an “offensive weapon”. They were arrested at around 3.10am and remain in police custody at the time of writing.
These are merely the latest of a series of arrests being made in the Somerset/Gloucestershire since badger culls began there, with “aggravated trespass” being the most common charge. Although police have allegedly attempted to maintain a fair approach towards all participants in the badger protests, their recurring role in these protests indicates the sheer strength of feeling, and division of opinion, when it comes to the badger cull which was commissioned recently.
The main reasoning for the badger cull is that badgers are responsible for spreading bovine TB, although this is highly contested and there are plenty of reports of evidence indicating otherwise. Despite a government petition gaining over 300,000 signatures in the two weeks since the cull began, unfortunately it still looks set to continue for the foreseeable future.
Above all, the badger cull is widely condemned as being inhumane, with many claiming that many badgers are left alive and in great pain and suffering – leading to many volunteering for a “badger watch”, taking it upon themselves to keep watching and listening for signs of badgers who may be in distress nearby.
An RSPCA representative has remarked upon the sheer inefficiency of this measure being taken to control bovine TB, and how this will ultimately cause widespread animal suffering; “The cattle deserve a long-term sustainable solution to this devastating disease which we believe is vaccination and better biosecurity – and the badgers do not deserve to be sacrificed for no real gain.”
High profile figures such as Queen guitarist Brian May are bringing more attention to the cause and urge the public to keep protesting and condemning the inhumane practice.
Go to http://www.rspca.org.uk/getinvolved/campaigns/wildlife/badgers for more information on the cause.