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11th Jun 2019

Tory leadership candidate claims lion would win in fight between a lion and a bear as it’s a ‘symbol of Britain’

James Dawson

He did say “ask me anything”

Conservative leadership candidate Mark Harper has said that a lion would win in a fight between a lion and a bear as it is a “symbol of Britain”, despite a bear having an obvious reach advantage.

Harper was asked the question as part of an “ask me anything” Q&A as he launched his campaign to become the next leader of the Conservative party and ultimately the country.

Replying to Mirror journalist Oliver Milne, he said: “Because the lion is a symbol of Britain, I’ll go with the lion.”

I’m going to be honest here, researching this article I got way too far into this whole debate on Google.

Me and my colleagues were all sure that the bear would win as it has an advantage in terms of reach and being able to stand on its hind legs. In fact, I was on the precipice of describing Harper’s response as a perfect analogy for Brexit: patriotism getting in the way of reason and logic, that of course, the bear would batter the lion. But the history and science of the subject appears to be more complex than that.

While the grizzly has the advantage of height, lions have a much more impressive jaw. In short, if a lion managed to sink its teeth into a bear’s vital organs it would be game over.

A lion would also be likely to have an aggression advantage as they are a pure predator. A bear can, of course, get angry, but as its diet is made up of both animals and vegetation, they lack the same level of cerebral instinct as a big cat.

Although such a showdown is unlikely to take place in the natural world, given that grizzlies and lions live in different parts of the world, in the past rich men have brought the two together to fight. This is a newspaper cutting of such a fight, in that instance the lion won:

Still, tactics wise if a bear was able to wrestle and get a hold of a lion it would likely win, though a lion would only need one bite to end the fight. So the jury’s still out on this one.

Anyway, nobody, and I really cannot emphasise this enough, nobody, should have to spend this long on Google or Yahoo Answers looking into this. In fact, nobody should be thinking about shit generally, especially someone who could potentially end up as our prime minister.