The campaign of intimidation against the Hall family, breeders of guinea pigs used in scientific experiments, appears to have succeeded, inasmuch as the Halls are now closed for business.
Perhaps what is needed is a scientists’ defence league, equipped with a legal fund that could be used to help bring civil proceedings against anti-science activists and assist with the court costs of scientists and associated professionals who exercised their right to self-defence in a legally controversial manner.
Scientists are generally peace-loving and rational people, which makes them ill-equipped to deal with organised aggro from self-righteous zealots, so maybe some self-defence classes would also be in order. With an emphasis on pro-active and, where necessary, pre-emptive use of controlled violence.
Let’s open a can of Ballardian dystopia!
“Richard,” she said, gripping my shoulder firmly, “these petty scuffles between animal rights activists and the pro-science brigades are just the beginning. Something new is happening here - the epigones of rationality are discovering a talent for cruelty and spontaneity. They are becoming what the activists always claimed they were, vicious thugs and torturers. The pro-science brigades are closing the gap between rhetoric and reality.”
“Sally, they’re fulfilling the activists’ own latent desires. In a way, haven’t the supporters of guinea pig rights always secretly wanted to be guinea pigs themselves? Now they’re getting their chance…”
Hell, that’s a story that wants to be written…