While Morrissey has spent a huge amount of time protesting against what he believes to be the maltreatment of animals, all the while regurgitating the title of The Smith’s second studio album, Meat is Murder, Canada’s fisheries minister, Gail Shea, considers the outspoken star to be “brainwashed”.

MorrisseyMorrissey, brainwashed? 

The accusation comes after Morrissey spoke out against Canada’s annual seal hunt, for which Shea said the singer was "looking for a popularity boost” adding that the controversial cull is a "well-regulated" process that yields "a plentiful and sustainable resource".

Morrissey has recently singled out Shea's support for the seal hunt and her claim that it is a "humane" cull. "If she considers such butchery to be so 'humane', why doesn't she place herself amongst the tens of thousands of grey-coated harp seals that will be slaughtered within the next few weeks?" he wrote. "She could then test the humane aspect of having her head blown off for herself. Only then could she be thought to speak with any authority on the subject."

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To this, Shea wrote in a letter to Canada.com, “Mr Morrissey and his Hollywood buddies have been brainwashed by decades of propaganda from fringe animal rights groups and radical environmentalists. They should take the time to actually consider the facts, or talk to the people whose lives are affected by the seal hunt … but that might be too difficult to do from the ivory towers of Hollywood."

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The former Smiths singer has boycotted Canada since 2004 in protest against their animal rights record. "I fully realise that the absence of any Morrissey concerts in Canada is unlikely to bring the Canadian economy to its knees," he jibed in 2006, "but it is our small protest against this horrific slaughter."

Morrissey - You're The One For Me, Fatty