Eric Clapton and Roger Waters are not afraid of getting blood on their hands.
Whenever we hear about musicians who are involved in charity or politics, it often concerns charity concerts in support of threatened ethnic groups and the well-being of animals. We are used to hearing international rock stars speaking warmly about Indian tribes, baby seals and other cuddly matters; but a new front of a completely different position is about to gather in England.
It concerns hunting, namely the traditional fox-hunting with dogs, which in 2005 was forbidden by law after a hectic debate, which divided politicians and electorate in two equal groups. The reactions for and against foxhunting didn’t follow traditional party politics, but revealed an enormous difference in opinion between cities and country.
To be blunt, there are a lot of people who want to continue hunting foxes and letting their greyhounds tear these red animals completely apart.
A few weeks ago this movement gathered about 7,000 spectators for a charity concert on a castle in Berkshire, where, among others, the guitar guru Eric Clapton and Pink Floyd musician Roger Waters were the main attractions. Both are hunters incarnate, and they had company on stage from inter alia Bryan Ferry and Andy McKay from Roxy Music, and Mike Rutherford from Genesis.
The Sunday Times describes the three-hour long concert at Highclere Castle, as the hitherto most outstanding attempt to scrap the foxhunting ban.
“We are most happy at the great interest in this concert. It is really great that such well-known persons are ready to support rural matters,” says the chairman for the foxhunters' association, the Countryside Alliance.
Roger Waters is actually so angry about the foxhunting law that he has mentioned it as one of the reasons why he has moved to the USA. “The law makes me ashamed of being English. It is one of the most despicable pieces of law we have ever seen in England.”
Roger Waters usually goes hunting pheasants along with Eric Clapton and Steve Winwood.
Not surprisingly these mature rock stars, who support “blood sports” (known to its critics as foxhunting) brought the opposite party on to the battlefield. Protesters have, according to The Sunday Times, condemned the concert at Highclere Castle. Among the protesters are the animal rights organisation Arkangel, which attacks these 'rock pensioners who supports evil'.
Rogers Waters plays at the Roskilde Festival in Denmark on 2 July and Eric Clapton picks up his guitar in Soenderborg, Denmark on 26 July. Local foxes are hereby warned.
Trans. Pia and Mogens Vinther: thanks!