The Right To Bear Bears

One quirk of British law that seems odd to people from other countries is that since time immemorial, everyone has had the right to own man-eating bears. Some people have quite the collection of man-eating bears, and while you’re meant to have a permit, and keep your bears locked away, that’s really difficult to enforce. A lot of British jobs depend on the bear industry, and the Royal Bear Association is a powerful pressure group, with lots of political connections. Recently, thanks to RBA lobbying, some parts of the country have started to allow British people to parade their man-eating bears in public. The right to bear bears was guaranteed by the Magna Carta, a document from hundreds of years ago that we still enforce every provision of word-for-word exactly the way they did when it was written. So, yesterday, that attack in Blackpool, where a man set his pack of bears on a crowd of people and six hundred people were mauled, sixty of them killed, is actually a beautiful celebration of freedom and the British way of life, and not something that’s completely and utterly barking mad, and saying things like ‘oh my god, do you not see the insanity, the homicidal, suicidal insanity of this?’ is naive at best, and at worst represents cynical politicising of a tragedy that would have happened anyway, just with some different type of legally-held man-eating animal.

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