The Australian government has directly responded to Morrissey‘s recent comments describing the country’s plans to cull feral cats as “taking idiocy too far“. Seeking to soothe the irate former frontman of The Smiths, threatened species commissioner Gregory Andrews has now penned a letter to both Morrissey as well as fellow animal rights activist Brigitte Bardot.
“I would like to commend you for your commitment to, and advocacy for, animals and their welfare… [but] the Australian government has taken a stance on feral cats; for the protection of our native species that belong here,” Andrews wrote, via The Guardian Australia.
Speaking to the The Guardian, Andrews stated he “never thought I’d write to Brigitte Bardot. It’s an unusual situation. I’m glad people like them care about animal welfare and I care deeply about animal welfare too.
“The threat to our wildlife are clear and feral cats are top of the list,” he added. “We don’t hate cats but we don’t have a choice. We will do this as humanely as possible and we will reduce the net suffering of animals in Australia.
“I sleep very well at night knowing what we are doing. Australians support this. Brigitte Bardot and Morrissey have a lack of understanding of Australia and what we are losing. They aren’t Australians, they aren’t experiencing the extinction crisis we have here.”
The plan to cull the feral cat population was first announced back in July by the country’s Federal environment minister Greg Hunt. Hoping to “halt and reverse the threats to our magnificent endemic species” the government hoped to reduce the nations’ estimated 20 million strong population of cats by two million by 2020.
At the time of his initial comments, Morrissey was critical of the then Abbott government, labelling them as “a committee of sheep-farmers who have zero concerns about animal welfare or animal respect.”
Watch: The Smiths – The Boy With The Thorn In His Side