At Random, with Martin Laing -21.4.22

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Stag-gering stupidity

Not many things make me almost apoplectic but the story about Stanley the Stag last week was one of them.

For those of you not in the know on this, a crowdfunding appeal has been launched to raise £1,000 for a memorial to a dead deer.

Someone has decided to name him Stanley, but let us be clear about this: he was not a domesticated or pet animal but a wild stag.
Fundraisers described him as a ‘cheeky character’. He was not. He – it – was a wild animal doing what it could to survive.

To ask people at this time to donate money to a memorial for a random wild animal is insensitive at best and grossly inappropriate at worst. These are the days of appalling suffering in Ukraine, to which the people of Oban have responded with magnificent generosity. All our lives are blighted by the Russian brutality in that benighted land and the need for humanitarian aid.

But these are also the days of near record inflation, a cost of living crisis for countless families and rocketing prices for fuel. People are having to make unthinkable choices between heating and eating, and how to fill up their cars as petrol prices soar to unbelievable levels.
To ask for money from ordinary folk in this economic dystopia is scandalous. It is a spurious cause which should never have been raised.
Needless to say, the appeal will get hee-haw from me. The organisers should go away and reconsider their priorities.

Beyond admiration

Dirk Campbell and Willie Bonniwell from Oban are off again to Ukraine with a cargo of aid for the poor souls under attack by Russia and suffering unimaginably.

They are carrying, in two vans, essential supplies, including medicine and food to help these victims of Putin’s shocking inhumanity. They are also planning to leave one of the vans there for ongoing assistance.

Their actions are beyond admiration, unlike the deer money hunters mentioned above.

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