16 March 2007

Too Many Horses

Kentucky, the horse capital of the world, famous for its sleek thoroughbreds, is being overrun with thousands of horses no one wants - some of them perfectly healthy, but many of them starving, broken-down nags. Other parts of the country are overwhelmed, too.

The reason: growing opposition in the U.S. to the slaughter of horses for human consumption overseas.


Anonymous said...

John, below is an email I sent to the author of this article. He has not repsonded.

Please allow me a few minutes of your time to present the other side to your article that you failed to address. The problem is not the kill houses are shut down, the problem is over breeding. I'd like to make an educated guess that much of the pro slaughter propaganda in your article was provided by the AQHA. They have a vested interest in keeping the kill houses open because they are notorious for over breeding. FACT: At the introduction of HR503 and S311 this year, the numbers of foals were as follows; 144,000 American Quarter Horses, 23,000 Thoroughbreds and 11,000 Standardbreds. The question that pro slaughter folks refuse to answer is why they never acknowledge the fact that a large percentage of the horses at the kill plants are stolen. I've seen numbers ranging from 40% to 55%. FACT: When California enacted the ban on slaughter, horse thefts decreased 34%. And contrary to what the pro slaughter folks want us to believe, there were no increases in abuse or neglect. The slaughter numbers have decreased substantially over the years and there have not been an increase in abuse and neglect numbers.

The pro slaughter folks keep throwing out their famous statement…. What will happen to the 90,000 unwanted horses? If you take away the number of stolen horses and the large percentage of horses that would have gone to caring owners if the kill buyers weren't grabbing them, that doesn't leave an unmanageable percentage. Your article leads readers to believe that in the two short weeks the Texas kill houses have been shut down, all of a sudden there are all these horses wandering the streets. That is simply not true. I've spoken to many horse people in Kentucky and they are adamant that it is just not true. If there are so many unwanted horses, why were the kill houses importing horses to the US?

When the one owner told you that he didn't have the stomach to shoot his horse, why didn't you ask him how he had the stomach to let him starve to death or the stomach to send him to slaughter for a horrific death? Why didn't you ask these people why they have horses if they can't afford to take care of them? Why didn't you ask the owners why they keep breeding their horses if they can't afford them? If they are going to own horses, they need to care for them in life and in death. If you haven't seen the videos on horse slaughter, I urge to view but one of them and then write an article on how that is humane euthanasia. Write an article defending the cruel transport.

Horses are not livestock as the pro slaughter people keep spewing. They are not raised for food. They are injected with drugs that clearly state; not for food animals. If horses are the same as cows, please tell me the last time you saw a cow run in the Kentucky Derby? The last time you saw a mounted policeman on a cow? The last time you saw a soldier going into battle on a cow? Oh, yeah – was that a cow Paul Revere was riding? They are companion, sport and work animals, not livestock.

Are you aware that all three kill houses are foreign owned? Are you aware that Dallas Crown paid $5.00 in federal income tax in 2005? Yes, that is correct - FIVE dollars. Are you aware that some of the meat is advertised overseas as… Dine on an American Champion? I don't understand how the US can allow these foreigners to slaughter our horses. We are paying millions in US tax dollars for the inspectors and we get absolutely nothing in return. All the profits go to foreign countries. Why aren't you writing about that? Why aren't you investigating why so few are so anxious to keep the kill houses open? Is there big money changing hands under the table?

We don't care if they eat horse. We are not trying to change their culture. We are saying loud and clear that they should continue to enjoy dining on horse but it will not be our horses. We are not PETA crazies or animal activists. We are Americans that are saying , enough is enough. We are resolved in our efforts to shut down this barbaric, horrific industry in 2007. You can continue to write all the pro slaughter articles you wish but understand, in every poll taken, the American people have overwhelming said NO to horse slaughter. The pro slaughter groups are running scared and your article is but one of many to come with their last ditch efforts to scare everyone. The public is wise to their tactics and nobody is going to fall for statements that have no facts to back them. Every argument and every statement they make has been shot down and disproved. They keep coming back with the same tired material and its not getting them anywhere.

I am part of a countrywide group called the Friends of Barbaro (FOBs). We came together because of Barbaro and together, we are working with Humane Societies and horse rescue organizations across the country. We are donating money and we are volunteering. We realize there will be issues to deal with when the bills are passed into law and we're dealing with them now. If you are interested in seeing all we have done and all the rescues we have made, please visit http://www.timwoolleyracing.com/ and you'll see that we can make a difference and we can have our horses live without the fear of slaughter.

Thank you for your time and allowing me to present the other side.

David said...

I live in Kentucky. It is the owners who are abusing the horses. I do not have a ethical stand on the issue personally but saying that we can't use them for feed that is the reason logically why they are being abuse is a little irrational to me.