Brief letter to the Daily Mail re Chickengate.

I sent the following to,,, and I’m not holding my breath for it being printed, nor any retractions, corrections or clarifications, but I can ask.

Dear Editor,

In response to the article by your columnist Liz Jones in this weeks Mail On Sunday:

Leaving aside the false implications that I use and endorse battery meat – illustrated and exaggerated with the photos of £1.99 chicken and the pigs in cages – I notice she failed to include in the article her own endorsements of ‘buttery soft leather’ goods, nor did she mention the Marks and Spencer prawns she claims to buy for her 17 cats. In the tiny world of Liz Jones, killing animals for arm candy or cat food is something to gleefully boast about, but choosing to eat a little free range meat here and there is apparently akin to apartheid.

For the record, and for the umpteenth time, I only use free range meat and eggs, and not very often come to that. I don’t think that’s worth a half page hatchet job in a national newspaper, and definitely not worth the vulgar comparison to racial segregation, and thousands of deaths under the brutal apartheid regime. Perhaps Ms Jones should stick to her sperm-stealing confessionals and buttery soft leather handbags, and leave the commentary about real issues to people with an ounce of comprehension and the ability to communicate without drivelling nonsense.

And this is the third hatchet job smear campaign that you have let one of your ‘journalists’ run about me in a matter of weeks. I’m not holding my breath for an apology or retraction – I’ll leave the finer points to the Press Complaints Commission. I’ve got a petition to take to Parliament on Wednesday and I sort of need to concentrate on that, ta.

With my best wishes,

Jack Monroe.

Best regards,

Jack Monroe

Categories: Blog


  1. As usual, Jack, you’ve handled yourself with style and grace. You’re the best.

    Happy Holidays to you and yours from the USA!

  2. Good for you Jack – I don’t read that rubbishy newspaper anyway so I wouldn’t have seen the article.

  3. Well said Jack the womans barking mad ,but then the paper is pretty rubbish anyway,only worth wrapping your chips in I think
    Carry on doing what you do best honey and spreading the word
    Cheers from andother JackieO in Kent

  4. I don’t know much about Liz Jones, for which I’m grateful. I know a lot more about you and that you write things that might change peoples’ lives for the better: that you’re concerned with alleviating misery and working hard at it. The other person’s a cunt.

    • Do you mind? That’s a beautiful part of my body! Not that I disagree with anything else you’ve written mind you, but…. It’s the old feminist in me I’m afraid!

  5. Blimey, is that right? If so, what a hypocrite the woman is! Vegan, my foot!
    My daughter is vegetarian and she doesn’t even buy leather shoes.
    J x

  6. Jack,

    some where in the near future, you will have to let a proxy stand in for you on these matters. Most of the writing coming from the mail is to excite the user base, not so much as angering you. Insulate and delegate on this front so we can have Jack Monroe doing her good work for the those who have no voice.

    be well


    • Indeed..
      Are you familiar with actor/comic Margaret Cho?
      When she was the recipient of obnoxious homophobic, mysoginistic and racist emails and comments she copied them to her blog…along with the appropiate email addresses and simply let her followers do the rest.
      Things quieted down pretty quickly!
      You have a public and political presence and will attract comments from cretins as well as carefully crafted attacks from those who stand to lose if your views are given credence. Choose you battles carefully and do not let them distract you and dilute your more important message. You cannot do it all so ask for help…on all fronts.

    • David – your Twitter address prompts a thought about what Jack’s followers can call ourselves. Jackobites. Seriously, great to see so many positive and supportive comments from everyone. Uplifting.

      • Graham, how about we just be ourselves?
        Human beings… not consumers, concerned citizens not constitiuents…advocates for the public good.

  7. You are not alone in suffering these smears and the Mail is not alone in delivering them. The Mail and the rest of the mass media try to maintain their own narratives of events and it seems you have got in their way. That they still indulge in such nonsense rather than focusing on the truth is why, ultimately, they will be left in the dust by bloggers such as yourself.

    Perhaps not from your end of the political spectrum, but as Christopher Booker remarks in the Sunday Telegraph today: “… the most telling giveaway of anyone who has passed into the grip of a “narrative” is how they instantly fall back on denigration of anyone who questions it, dismissing them as “flat-earthers”, “idiots”, “cranks”, “Right-wingers”, “creationists”, “in the pay of Big Oil”, and so on. ”

    See also the links in his friend, Richard North’s related article:

  8. Last time I read anything by her she was droning on about how she couldn’t believe why some man had left her. This was followed by the earth-shattering revelation that she sometimes wore cashmere knickers “for confidence” It made me laugh so much that it stuck in my mind. As the mother of a teenaged daughter I know who I see as a role-model for young women and you might just be a lap or two ahead there.She comes across as a deeply unhappy, nasty piece of work who has turned shallowness into an art-form. She obviously isn’t going to like someone like you is she? The best she has is to lie about your ethics regarding chicken. Pity her.

    • I honestly think she is a bit bats. I remember the cashmere knickers thing – but there again I think more recently she has said that she only owns two pairs of pants – one on and one in the wash. If they’re both cashmere, that could get a bit tricky, I would have thought. It gets more complicated still as I’m sure I once read an article by Liz Jones on the cruelty of the cashmere and lambswool trade (the animals are generally killed, not somehow relieved of their wool nicely).

      The ‘two pairs of knickers’ remark, incidentally, was made in the context of a piece about how we’ve all gone soft, have too many things and put our heating on instead of wearing six jumpers. Maybe that’s where the woolly underwear comes in.

  9. I’m not sure if this has come up here, Jack, but Bad PR exposes much of the crap they print as “news” as being nothing more than PR fluff:

    I would laugh if it wasn’t for the tragic fact so many people read the DM.

  10. I agree with everything that Jill in NYC says. There comes a point (and you are nearly there) if you are to remain focused on your priorities and not to be driven mad & pulled from pillar to post

  11. Well said Jack. It shows the level of “journalism” that passes in some rags these days and, quite frankly, isn’t worth the time of day. I can assure you that anyone who “knows” (as in has been following you for ages) you, knows that you are a person with extremely high ethical standards. Not only that, you are a person who cares about the things that really matter…not feeding prawns to cats (and, yes, I am a cat owner)! I am sure the aforesaid “journalist” will find their career floundering in no time, whilst you will go on to much bigger and better things because of who you are and what you do!!!

  12. Such an eloquent lady. Inspiring. The Mail isn’t a good read.

    I really hope you run as an MP … you’d sock it to them

  13. I’d love to see the original article?

    A link or reproduction somehow would be most welcome.


    PS: New here, and love everything I’ve read thusfar, Jack! Keep at it!

  14. Chickengate! That made me laugh but, really, the woman is a loony. I am clearly not that we’ll read, as I hadn’t been lucky enough to read her fascinatingly-surreal prose before. Sadly, I doubt your reply will be published. Too many long words.

    Keep doing what you’re good at, and stay away from the woolly underwear and soft handbags.

  15. Jill in NYC – fair point. We’re all unique individuals.All different, all equal but with the same values. Got a bit carried away. Good challenge.

  16. Am surprised you are dignifying that horrid creatures vitriol with a response, but good luck with it anyway. X

  17. They must have a lot of time on their hands or something to hide if they are attacking you for wanting to help the hungry. And nice breakdown on the battery chicken vs. the Taste the difference. It is an overused misconception that you can’t eat humanely and healthy on a budget. We do it all the time.

  18. Despite being very right wing and having never experienced life on a breadline, I would rather read what Jack has to say than anything that comes out of the mouth or keyboard of that seriously damaged cat woman (or DM more generally). Jack – in case you were not aware, you have plenty of supporters amongst the most unlikely of audiences. One may not necessarily share all of your views, but your passion, professionalism and support of the good cause deserve nothing but admiration and praise.

    I do think however that your very eloquent responses layered with top class swearing are wasted on the likes of Liz Jones and Littlejohn with a single digit IQ. Do save yourself for the places like the parliament where you belong.

  19. I totes agree with everything said here – the woman sounds like a poor excuse for a ‘journalist’. The DM is a load of junk, that makes some of our terrible ‘news’papers here in Australia look like highbrow art! Just ignore, Jack, and move on with your good work… Don’t let trolls like that get to you.

  20. ! Have to say this is probably the only time I have agreed with Liz Jones. Sorry if you think animals taste good but there really is no such thing as ethical meat, and meat if buying free range and organic is costly. If you don’t have much money to spend on food, making sure you have lots of vegetable based protein such as pulses, beans and a wide variety of vegetables will be far more versatile, cheaper and satisfying than getting the cheapest chicken breasts.

    So more vegan/vegetarian recipes!


    I read this guardian article about her. I loved the comment by rihanna but am now upon finishing the read convinced that it is all truly spin for her own faltering self confidence. Im not sure whether to feel sorry that shes in such a dark place that she has to write that to lift herself or angry that considering her own issues she could have seen a little further to how others might feel.

    Either way, the editors who let her dm article go through deserve whatever criticism they get.

  22. Dear Jack. I been following your blog of the past 6 months or so and I love it and support your comments 99%. I wonder if the tone of your reply to Liz Jones in Daily Mail could have been smarter. People might respond to the tone of the letter rather than the content and that would be disappointing. The best of your writing is superb.
    I agree with Jill in NYC. Don’t waste too much emotional energy on people like Liz. You have much more important jobs to do.
    I wish you and your small boy much happiness this Christmas.

  23. I really, really appreciate your stance on free range meat – it is far too easy to do a Delia and claim that being on a low income means you have no choice but to eat battery and intensive meat/chicken. Liz Jones really is a tit.

  24. You go girl. These silly people eh…. but each time they do (like you have pointed out) it gets more people to your blog/social media and (trusting they are decent balanced beings) gets more support for the great causes you are championing. You are doing an amazing, great job. Happy Christmas.

  25. Sadly, the Daily Fail will keep trying to goad you as you threaten their right-wing manifesto…try to ignore the bullying, the truth will out. Merry Christmas to you and your boy x

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