The past week has seen amazing scenes of rural carnage unfold across Britain, as frenzied mobs of villagers have attacked badger setts and savagely beaten and killed their apparently harmless black and white occupants. In one incident in Berkshire, an enraged mob improvised their own gassing apparatus, by reversing a car up to several setts in a woodland copse, and trailing a hose from its exhaust into the entrances of each sett in turn. As the vehicle’s engine was repeatedly revved, the setts filled with noxious carbon monoxide, forcing the badgers into the open, where a pack of ravenous dogs was set upon them. Police and wildlife experts have been at a loss to explain this sudden outbreak of violence. However, The Sleaze has learned that the mobs have been motivated by lurid tabloid reports of gangs of delinquent badgers terrorising rural communities, harassing pensioners and attempting to corrupt young children. “Groups of them hang around street corners at dusk, swilling strong lager from cans, smoking roll-ups, spitting on the pavement and urinating in telephone boxes,” claimed one anonymous source quoted in a popular Sunday tabloid. “They frequently make lewd and offensive comments to passing women. Pensioners have been afraid to go out after dark since one old man had his walking stick kicked away by the furry bastards and two old ladies were mugged and had their pension books and false teeth stolen.”

There have also been newspaper reports of gangs of badgers burglarising houses, stealing valuables, crapping on the carpets and masturbating over the beds. “They’re completely out of control,” Mrs Edith Trumper, postmistress in the picturesque Devon village of South Molton, told one tabloid. “Only last week a group of badgers started harassing children at the local primary school – they would drive past the school at break times and try to tempt children into their car with offers of sweets! Thankfully, none of the children succumbed to temptation and went with the badgers – goodness knows what depravities they would have been exposed to!” In an apparent change of tactics, the badgers instead took to trying to sell children cigarettes and pornography as they came out of school every afternoon. “It was filthy stuff, featuring animals and cross-species sex – chickens with goats, shaved pussies with cocker spaniels. Truly disgusting, far worse than anything I sell in the Post Office,” claimed Trumper.

Whilst the badgers were reportedly chased off by a mob of furious parents armed with pitchforks and scythes, the children were left severely traumatised. “They’re now absolutely terrified of badgers, we’ve had to withdraw Wind in the Willows, featuring Mr Badger, from the school library”, said Headmistress Jane Hummer. Moreover, the stars of popular children’s TV series Badger and Bodger found themselves being stoned by an angry mob during an ill-timed personal appearance at the village hall. Whilst Bodger was able to escape the frenzied mob, his glove-puppet companion Badger was not so lucky, and ended up strung up from a lamp-post and set alight.

However, The Sleaze has learned that none of the alleged badger crimes can be substantiated, with police forces admitting that they have no reports of badgers, or any other type of wildlife, committing crimes anywhere in the UK. It seems that these stories have been planted in the press as part of a plot by supporters of blood sports to discredit badgers and turn the public against them, thereby making it easier to justify the continuation of such widely reviled rural past-times as badger-baiting and gassing “There is no doubt that the popular perception amongst town-dwellers of badgers being wise, kindly and gentle creatures has greatly hampered our efforts to make an argument for the retention of such traditional countryside activities,” admits Tom Rissole, a spokesman for the Real Countryside Alliance, an extreme militant pro-hunting group which claims to represent rural workers rather than land owners. “If they weren’t so cuddly looking, nobody would care. I mean, you don’t see anyone making a case for evil-looking little shits like stoats and weasels, do you? The truth is that, as we true country folk know, badgers are vicious disease-ridden little bastards that need to be ruthlessly controlled – and if we can bring some entertainment into our poverty-stricken lives by turning it into a sport, so what? The fact is that such past-times as badger-baiting and hare coursing are the only form of entertainment that can be afforded by millions of poorly paid agricultural workers – they can’t afford packs of dogs, horses and fancy outfits to go fox-hunting like their wealthy, land owning employers do, in order to satisfy their natural blood lusts. Don’t deprive these poor bastards of their one meagre pleasure in life!”

Indeed, Rissole’s group has little time for the traditional fox-hunting set. “Why don’t they just admit that they’re all a bunch of sexual inadequates who can only get it up by dressing in tight breeches, slamming their crotches against a firm leather saddle and slaughtering small animals?” he says. “Everybody knows that after the hounds have got the fox, the huntsmen all retire to the local Manor house nursing erections like steel stair-rods and proceed to thrash one another’s bottoms with riding crops, before blowing their horns and buggering each other, their horses and finally the hounds senseless in a drunken reverie. At least we’re honest as to why we’re cruel to animals – we’re a bunch of in-bred sadistic bastards!”

For their part, the aforementioned fox-hunting set appear to have reluctantly accepted that their past-time is likely to be outlawed in the very near future, and are actively seeking alternatives. “Clearly we need to find a substitute prey which has far less public sympathy than foxes,” says Sir Rodney Fantail, leader of the West Rutland Hunt. “The ideal solution would seem to be to hunt down packs of illegal immigrants or, failing that, alleged peadophiles, or even unmarried mothers. There appears to be little public support for any of them, they all seem to spend most of their time pursued by howling lynch mobs and harassed by the authorities anyway. Indeed, I see this as an ideal way to demonstrate to the public that huntsmen do have a social conscience and provide an essential service. Ideally, immigrants could be held in special camps, where they are fed and trained, before being released into the countryside on hunt days – any ingenious enough to escape the hounds and reach the sanctuary of the local church could be granted British citizenship! It would all be carried out in a totally humane manner. After all, these immigrants enjoy being chased, they wouldn’t spend their time illegally crossing international borders and evading capture by the authorities otherwise, would they?”