30 September 2011 - The U.S. Horse Industry Needs Your Support

To those of you who sent me the very nasty, angry e-mails about a year ago when, in this column, I supported revival of the ‘Horse Humane Slaughter” program, I have news for you. Things haven’t gotten any better for those unwanted, abandoned horses; they have gotten much worse.

The program was heavily lobbied by several celebrities who testified before Congress and state legislatures to stop the slaughter of horses, the processing of the meat and the exporting of the meat to those countries where horse meat is a part of the culture and diet. They succeeded and the processing plants were closed.
That has not improved conditions for abandoned, unwanted horses in this country. Abandoned for whatever reason; the owner can no longer afford to keep them or feed them and cannot afford to dispose of them properly and so they are turned loose to die of starvation, disease or predatory animals that devour the unwanted horses.

That is why, once again, I’m supporting a new campaign to overturn that ban. It is an effort being conducted by the United Horsemen, a nonprofit that is dedicated to the well- being of horses and horse people. According to their newsletter, “We work for the restoration of humane and regulated horse processing in the U.S. to ensure the best possible fate and valuable use of excess, unwanted and unusable horses. We also work for the responsible management and control of wild and feral horses on federal, state, tribal and private lands. We seek to preserve the private property rights of all horse owners, our beloved horseback culture, and to ensure the long-term viability of the horse industry to not just survive but to thrive economically, socially and spiritually.”

The United Horsemen are conducting two petition efforts. The first is directed to Congress, “We Petition Congress to: Restore the U.S. Horse Industry”. The second goes to the White House, “We Petition the Obama Administration to: Restore humane horse slaughter to improve horse welfare, stop needless and wasteful suffering and create jobs.”

I totally support both of these petitions and urge you to do the same, to improve conditions for the abandoned, unwanted horses.

My thoughts on Samuelson Sez.