What is it with Mancunian popstars and animal cruelty? After Shaun Ryder's war on pigeons, we've now got Mark E Smith claiming to kill squirrels:
"Squirrels mean nothing to me. I killed a couple last weekend actually. They were eating my garden fence.
"My sisters are animal lovers and they had been leaving food out for these squirrels. They've got rats in the bloody house now. Serves 'em right."
To make matters worse, the maverick frontman went on to add that he 'wouldn't have a problem' with running over seagulls for fun.
Although unsavory, we somehow can't picture Mark E Smith using hedge clippers at all, much less being nifty enough on his pins to start chopping animals up.
It's the Daily Mail who bring this story to our attention - of course, they're struggling to explain Mark E Smith to a readership who, frankly, probably don't recognise their own carers, never mind pop stars. First of all, as is the Mail's way, they try to subtly link him to the BBC:
We love that "said to be", as if there is any room for any doubt whatsoever that Peel loved the Fall.
They then try to place him in some sort of musical context. Maybe he writes songs about being cruel to animals, perhaps?
Well, they're sort of cruel about animals, a bit.
Then they get the RSPCA in to comment:
"To suggest in a magazine read by youngsters that it is a good idea to harm wildlife is both extremely stupid and highly irresponsible."
This was Uncut, so the RSPCA needn't worry about impressionable young people being corrupted.
It's not funny, and it's disheartening, but it's equally tiring to see the Mail getting exercised about a Fall interview in Uncut. It's hardly porn-heroin in our classrooms, is it?