Princess Michael of Kent has sparked outrage after reportedly claiming that animals do not have rights “because they don’t pay taxes”.
She apparently made the controversial comments at Henley Literary Festival during a discussion about her new novel, Agnes Sorel: Mistress Of Beauty.
I’m a great animal lover and I’m involved in a lot of conservation, but animals don’t have rights. They don’t have bank accounts. They don’t vote. We have obligation. We have obligation to animals, but to say they have rights? They don’t have rights. You only have rights if you pay your taxes. You earn your rights.
Let that sink in for a second. She thinks you have to earn your rights. You know, just like the Queen does by not paying any tax.
Princess Michael of Kent: 'Animals don't have rights' because they don't pay taxes or vote. But neither does the Queen. How does that work?
— Billy Bongo (@BullshineBilly) September 30, 2015
Dear Princess Michael of Kent, if animals don't have rights because they don't pay tax. Then neither do you or any of the royal family.
— Matthew White (@MattCJWhite) September 29, 2015
Unsurprisingly, her comments have drawn a lot of criticism from animal rights campaigners, who weren’t the biggest fans of the princess to begin with because of her love of fur coats.
Speaking to the Times, Elisa Allen, associate director of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta):
Peta urges Princess Michael to study the subject, rather than making an off-the-cuff statement that reflects ignorance of the issue of what fundamental rights animals have, which do not include the right to drive a car or build up an overdraft.
She should also exercise caution in opining at all on such issues, because her daft assessment would mean that children and certain classes of human beings are also not entitled to rights.
But, as usual, leave it to Ricky Gervais to sum up people’s feelings on the whole situation pretty succinctly. On his Facebook page, he wrote: “Animals might not pay taxes but they certainly work harder than this f*cking waste of space.” Yeah, pretty much…