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Letters to the Editor – Monday 9th October 2017

Today’s first letter details the Government response to a Petition on ending the cruelty of halal slaughter – a petition which was set up by our correspondent Ceri Jayes and which was published here on UKIP Daily. Our correspondent Jack Thomas reports:

Sir,

Today I received the government’s response to a petition on ending halal slaughter which I had supported.

This is the response:

“The Government would like all animals stunned at slaughter. However, we also respect the rights of the Jewish and Muslim communities to eat meat prepared in accordance with their religious beliefs.

Current national regulations on religious slaughter have a long history. The issue was first debated in Parliament in 1875. The Slaughter of Animals Act 1933 introduced a legal requirement for stunning of animals prior to slaughter but contained an exemption where animals were slaughtered for consumption by Jewish and Muslim communities. Over the years the national rules governing religious slaughter have developed to provide additional protection to animals that are slaughtered in accordance with religious rites.

EU Regulation 1099/2009, on the protection of animals at time of killing, requires all animals to be stunned before slaughter except where animals are slaughtered in accordance with religious rites. The EU Regulation and the Welfare of Animals at Time of Killing (England) Regulations 2015 (WATOK) include strict requirements on where, how and who can slaughter animals in accordance with religious rites. These requirements are monitored and enforced by Official Veterinarians of the Food Standards Agency to ensure that animals are spared unnecessary suffering, distress or pain during the slaughter process.

The legislation also requires each person either handling or carrying out slaughter operations, including religious slaughter, to hold a Certificate of Competence. A person must undergo formal training, understand their responsibilities for the protection of animal welfare during slaughter operations and consistently demonstrate competent performance in order to pass the independent examination to obtain a Certificate of Competence.

Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs”

Why must we oppose it?

The Muslim population is growing much faster than our own, native white British, population. Of course along with that the demand for Halal products is increasing, so much so that certain food outlets already provide exclusively Halal meat and the pressure on the others to follow suit will grow in order to reduce costs.

For a start we could boycott Halal products, even boycott completely the suppliers of them but we don’t know for sure which products are compliant and those which are not. There is another petition that calls for clear labelling and might be an easier first objective; at least we could then make an informed choice.

We must ensure that EU Regulation 1099/2009 in its present form is excluded from the provisions of May’s Great Repeal Bill too.

Every time that our government panders to Muslim sensibilities we lose out in respect of our values which have developed over many years. That population senses weakness every time that this happens and it gives them confidence that, in the long term, they will win.

We will not defeat the invader by head on confrontation unless / until we get a government which supports us, so we must work incrementally.  Banning Halal slaughter will receive widespread support from all hues of the political spectrum so is a good starting point. Once we have the law then it must be enforced – Live in our Country, Live by our Rules. That is how the law is applied in the invaders’ own countries so why not ours?

The growth of Islam is a clear and present danger to us and the lives of our descendants. Its followers have been waging war against us for centuries, both openly and surreptitiously. Our exit from the EU is an essential battle in the war against Islam but there is much more required if we are to avoid subjugation to it.

Respectfully, Jack Thomas

Today’s second letter is an encouragement for members. During the leadership elections and the fallout after the result, it was easy to lose sight of what we have achieved and what we still can and indeed must achieve. Our contributor Jim Makin writes:

Sir,

Woe, Woe, and thrice Woe!

Labour are resurgent, the Tories are imploding, the Lib-Dems have evaporated (temporarily – being undead they will return) and UKIP is . . . actually, relative speaking, in passable nick.

Our policy stance is sensible, traditional, and long awaited (thank you Steve Crowther, we owe you), our leader is elected by a handsome vote, presentable, articulate and experienced (if yet untried), and our brand (some would say unnecessarily revised) survives in slightly amended form. But UKIP is already indelibly branded into the public consciousness.

Unlike the Tories, we know what we are for, unlike Labour we are not led by a relic of the past pursuing the failed policies of the past, unlike the Lib-Dems we strive for a cause rather than for a Party.

Most importantly, the miraculous vision of Mrs May calmly at the helm of the good ship Brexit, which led to our wipe-out at the general election, is now blown away by her Florentine capitulation to the EU’s non-negotiating tactic, and her disastrous performance as captain of a crew in disarray seemingly on course to go down even before the ship itself sinks.

The stage is set if we care to take our eyes away from our own infighting.

It’s true that we still have the same old UKIP for now, with its opaque leadership (and we look to Henry to insist upon change in due course). Some who implacably wanted their own candidate to triumph have left us (it’s a free country) and we who remain (sorry about that word) are free to put UKIP back on the political map.

No UKIP isn’t perfect but look at the competition.

What are we waiting for?

Respectfully, Jim Makin

 

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About Vivian Evans (218 Articles)
Vivian is a UKIP patron and 'keyboard warrior' and is currently the Editor in Chief for UKIP Daily

32 Comments on Letters to the Editor – Monday 9th October 2017

  1. I heard Mr Agnew speak at Conference and, if memory serves, two of his arguments for supporting halal torture chambers were that (i) if we don’t allow it legally, muslims and jews will simply continue to do it illegally and in their own homes instead of in licensed slaughter houses, and (ii) if we dont allow it at all in this country, Halal meat will have to be imported. Well, I’m sorry but NEITHER of those two arguments stand up. Firstly, if people of any religious persuasion, or none, choose to slaughter animals illegally in their own homes then we must have more public servants to seek out the culprits and take them to Court, and there is no need whatsoever to import halal meat from abroad. Meat is not necessary to sustain life – you only need to ask the millions of UK vegetarians and vegans about that. Anyone who doesnt want to eat stunned meat can simply go without! Catholics used to eat fish on Fridays but it is many, many years since I heard of any Catholic who still observes that custom. Things change. Civilisation advances – well it does in this country anyway – or rather it did, until comparatively recently! Now it seems we are systematically being dragged back into the dark ages. Yes I do eat meat myself, but I feel guilty about it. It is against the law in this country to kill dogs and cats for sport, with a crossbow. Suppose I said “I have to spend my weekends doing that, because it is part of my religion”, would I be given dispensation by the Courts to do so? I don’t think so. Likewise, anyone who says “It’s against my religion to prevent the suffering of animals” (which is in fact what the Jews and Muslims are effectively saying) can [expletive deleted] well go veggie or emigrate to some more primitive country which suits them better! This must be a central pillar of UKIP policy, because no other Party is standing up for animal rights. I didnt know that the Red Tractor symbol meant “not halal” (which I suppose we must refer to as “Haram” nowadays – sigh!) or that there were any Halal symbols and non-Halal symbols, but I will certainly look out for them in future. It seems to me also that any Kipper “going for a curry or a kebab” on a Friday night ought to ask the manager, before buying, for an assurance that the meat is not halal.

  2. If we are to raise the public’s consciousness of UKIP I suggest we take steps to become an officially recognised religion. When that is achieved we could do whatever we liked, almost. In 2013 the UK’s Supreme Court ruled that Scientology is a fully fledged religion notwithstanding that it worships no deity. (It was probably designed to be a tax dodge – I apologise to any practising Scientologists if that is not the case). During the legal arguments on the referendum I thought I heard say that Parliament must decide what’s what on any subject not the judges. I don’t recall a ‘Scientology Bill’ being discussed in Parliament. Did MPs approve it? Did the Bishops in the Lords do so too? My e-mail address features the word ‘ham’, am I to be sanctioned because it doesn’t measure up to someone’s beliefs? At the Football Lads Alliance march on Saturday in Park Lane I noticed an advert on the side of a TFL bus which used the phrase “bringing home the bacon” and also used a photo of 6 rashers of bacon on a plate. Is this offensive to those who cannot be named? On the Underground earlier this year, Khan banned an advert on (TFL) Tube stations which displayed a curvaceous young lady who, it was declared, was ‘Beach-body ready’. This offended some feminists (a religion?) apparently but could the banning have had something to do with Khan’s beliefs and that of his fellow believers? The Law, which is usually an ass, is – it seems – totally dysfunctional when it comes to religions and their ‘advantages’.

  3. May I add to my rather long (apologies) comment below.
    The Co-op does not sell any meat from non pre-stunned animals apparently. It will not sell kosher meat as this has not been slaughtered in accordance with its standards which are symbolised by the Red Tractor. I hope I have this correctly.
    The Co-op offers other information which should satisfy anxious customers.

    Regarding bread! Not only Kingsmill but Warburtons also bears the halal logo. Discovered this today.
    No more crumpets!

  4. Viv
    Thank you for that. Henry Bolton and Stuart Agnew are clearly at odds on this. We need clarity. One rule for all as a cornerstone of UKIP policies…or crumbling foundations and pandering to the religious groups. This must be addressed.

  5. What wonderful pertinent points coming from UKIP Daily readers. We sing from the same hymn sheet. Thank you so much for the support and strength of feeling on this. One rule for all. UKIP must make its policy clear on if it supports stun to kill. The Party’s apparent volte face has been the source of angst since ‘that’ leaflet was distributed to Asian households only in the Stoke by election 6 months ago.
    If only our MPs would grow a pair and stand up against this blatant cruelty to animals. What is the point of any law if there are waivers or exemptions? We cannot have parallel societies or the whole fabric of our society will break down.
    Our mealie mouthed MPs have voted to not be served halal meat in the Westminster food outlets unless they specifically request it. How hypocritical is that.
    I am compiling a list of MPs who have expressed support on issues such as religious exemptions, and also on the live export of animals for slaughter. Any feedback that you can give me would be most welcome.

    • It might be worth recalling here that Henry Bolton said at the hustings in Newport, on a direct question about halal slaughter, that he categorically rejects non-stun slaughter for any religious reasons.

    • It doesn’t matter how many of us agree with you, unfortunately, Ceri. UKIP’s policy on halal slaughter is decided by a small clique around the leader and they couldn’t care less what the members think. As was demonstrated by that Stoke leaflet.

  6. It must be said that being an atheist, I’m glad I’m not being dictated to by an ancient religion that tells me when I can eat certain types of food and the manner in which it must be prepared first.

    What however is abhorrent to me is the fact that guidelines on the humane slaughter of animals in the 21st century can be overridden by ‘religious exemptions’ dating back thousands of years.

    I don’t know about the Jews so much, but I do know that Muslims are permitted to eat non-Halal meat if Halal is not available to them.

    One rule, one law. If the Halal method of slaughter is illegal (under EU rules, wahey!) then it should be illegal, regardless of ‘religious exemptions’. If Muslims can’t get access to Halal meat in the UK, no problem, their own religion permits them to eat non-halal meat if halal is not available. So what exactly is the problem here?

    What this country needs are some leaders with real balls to start enforcing the rules and regulations already in place, without tip-toeing around the ‘big issues’ by meekly introducing new laws and regulations that have no effect at all, apart from capitulating to the influence of ‘religion’.

  7. Thank you to everyone who has signed my petition calling for an end to religious exemption given to slaughter houses from pre-stunning requirements. It had 10,000 signatories in its first 4 days but has lost traction and is clocking up just 200 per day now.
    If you have not signed you can find it on Petition UK Government and Parliament. Please also share it far and wide.
    Petition 200147 which calls for labelling so that consumers can make informed choices also needs support.
    The UK banned the rearing of veal calves in crates and the EU followed.We can show the humane way ahead on this.
    We pride ourselves on being a nation of animal lovers so how we can accept religious conviction justifying cruelty to animals?
    The more research that I do in preparation for a debate in parliament the more astounded I become. For example, DEFRA Halal and Kosher slaughter guidance paper dated 15 October 2015 clearly states, ‘The meat must be intended for consumption by Jews or Muslims’. The Halal market was worth £2.6 billion in Britain alone in 2016 and the export market is growing. Our country’s Muslim population is 4.8%. Where is that meat going? Why? I do not want to eat it. How would I know? Definite food for thought!
    DEFRA recently announced that prison sentences could be 5 years for animal cruelty offences. The press coverage on that focused on abuse to household pets. I hope that cruelty in religious slaughter houses will come under scrutiny.
    Many listened in dismay at UKIP Conference when Stuart Agnew MEP, Agriculture Spokesman, announced he supported the continuation of the religious exemption and outlined his reasons for doing so.
    I believe that an article examining his speech will be published shortly.

    • Ceri,

      Thank you for your hard work in getting these petitions going and everything else you do in the name of animal welfare. I don’t think it should be up to Stuart Agnew and the other ‘high ups’ to decide UKIP’s policy on this, I do like Stuart but feel he is out of kilter with this one. Also, how would his views square up with AMW’s who is dead against this cruelty if he had become her deputy? I guess they would have to agree to disagree.

    • Ceri

      It is amazing how the media lambasted the food industry when the horsemeat scandal was revealed but they don’t want to touch this one.
      They are brazen hypocrites.
      Keep up the good work and if we can at least get clear labelling of ritually slaughtered food and expose the big supermarkets who sell unlabelled ritual slaughtered meat and meat products it is a step in the right direction before getting an outright ban.
      There should be a campaign to write to all big food companies and expose them if they do not label food correctly. Money talks!

  8. Halal killing is inhuman, so it stands to reason that those who call for halal slaughter are themselves in human.
    Drop all this rubbish about catering for religious beliefs.
    It is based on mediaeval beliefs and practices.
    It has no place in a 21st Centuary civilised country.
    I also believe that those who call for halal slaughter therefore have no place in a civilised country.

  9. On many food products and household consumables somewhere on the label there is a tiny circle containing the letter R. On American products I believe it is usually the letter U. In some cases it is on the front, in some cases on the back so you might need to search very carefully to find it. I have been told that this mark indicates to prospective customers, at least those in the know, that the manufacturer contributes to Jewish organisations/charities.

  10. Bernard from Bucks. // October 9, 2017 at 4:35 pm // Reply

    “…enforced by Official Veterinarians of the Food Standards Agency to ensure that animals are spared unnecessary suffering, distress or pain during the slaughter process”
    It therefore follows that these poor animals have to endure some NECESSARY(?) suffering, distress or pain by using non-humane slaughter. This is a disgusting state of affairs in 21st century Britain. There is no ‘halfway house’ when any living creature has to suffer like this. None of it is necessary. They are simply barbarians.

  11. I too signed the halal petition and had the Government’s response which prompted me to check on one or two things which others probably know.

    The Co-op supermarket which sets out to adhere to ethical standards sells only meat from stunned slaughtered animals and this applies to Co-op own brand ready meals as well. Since the store is my local supermarket of choice this is good to know.
    Although I buy meat rarely and usually from elsewhere I don’t want to buy any halal by mistake.
    The Co-op does sell a small amount of halal in selected locations and it is labelled as such.

    I checked the UKIP 2015 Manifesto which does not of course call for a ban but stricter standards of training and surveillance in the form of cameras.

    I wonder, could the success of the petition influence whether a ban would be incorporated into the manifesto or would immediate publicised incorporation of a ban influence the success of the petition?

    I note that the ‘Keep the Ban on Fox Hunting’ petition mounted on Change.org has elicited 790,518 signatures in around five months.
    I do not know how these things work, but I guess that some petitions gain momentum and others dwindle.
    My maths is weak in the extreme but having been open for a month (?) at the same rate of signing, the non-stun ban may gather under 100,000 signatures. It currently stands at 14,811.

    Fox hunting as a subject comes highly charged, it being arguably more glamorous and right-on to oppose it as there is all that social class baggage and quite rightly, the idea of any creature being ripped to shreds, especially aided by humans, is repellant.
    Also we don’t eat foxes, so the killing appears unnecessary.

    Animal slaughter for consumption, however, is a subject most do not want to confront.
    Halal for obvious reasons also comes highly charged.
    The result is that equivalent support will be hard to galvanise but I hope I am wrong.

    Writing to my MP on this and associated matters, I pointed out that the numbers of animals involved are far higher now due to increasing demand and I was not convinced that adequate checks could be made realistically. To this I received no specific response.

    I have read on here that there are ways round this in terms of slaughter that can be acceptable and there is always the hypocritical route of allowing imports. Labelling would increase awareness, perhaps requiring supermarkets to engage in a visible and active promotion of customer awareness in the form of counter signage and some explanation.

    The bottom line should be one law for all and that needs to be extended to animals as well as the people who eat them.
    It is also an important lesson on starting as you mean to go on. The religious exemption was made in another time and the law should be revisited.
    If the Government can consider changing its mind on fox hunting….

    With regard to everything else you say, Jack, yes.

    • Eliza,

      I also e-mailed my MP about her views on religious slaughter and have not received any reply, yet she e-mailed me about her support against live animal exports. Seems like double standards to me, they just don’t want to talk about it hoping we will go away or better still not notice.

    • Eliza,

      I think fox hunting was a ‘red herring’ in the election, not sure why that was thrown in unless to satisfy the blood lust of some snobby peers to get their backing.

    • Thanks Eliza for this Eliza – I too am a Coop shopper and whilst I knew the Coop only uses British meat in its products I did not know that all meats in their products are stunned slaughter.

      All the other supermarkets should be put on the spot about this. I only purchase fresh foods and cook them daily so unfortunately I don’t have any knowledge about how much ritually slaughtered food is in processed food. I do know that schools and hospitals and the armed forces all buy ritually slaughtered food to make it easy for the purchasing and producing of food.
      This practice gives ritually slaughtered food producers and slaughterhouses a unfair business advantage.

  12. Excellent points from Jim Makin, there.

  13. Keith and WK,

    Well done, you two.

  14. Kingsmill bread is halal certified, despite being vegetarian. Look for the Arabic word ‘halal’ حلال on any Kingsmill bread bag. I haven’t bought any Kingsmill bread since I found that out and I urge everyone reading this to stop buying it too.

    • Subway is all halal except, I suspect, their pork. Already boycotted and I inform my friends.

      • I also suspect that Subway’s pork is not halal 😉

      • Subway is not all halal, only certain outlets, but several hundred of them. But Pizza Express, for example, is 100% halal chicken. The reason is obvious. If the non-muslims don’t complain about being halal or not, then it is economically more efficient not to have to keep two entirely separate supply chains. So the community that complains loudest gets its will imposed on the placid community.

    • I assumed all bread was halal.

      Sadly, I passed a farm (with farm shop) on the A6 on the outskirts of Galgate, just south of Lancaster, recently. It was promoting halal products! A farm shop in rural Lancashire!

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