A Question of Ethics
July 18, 2012 by shedrowconfessions
There’s certainly a lot to comment on this week with the slaughter issue with the recent revelations from The Equine Welfare Alliance (http://myemail.constantcontact.com/2012-07-17-Press-Release—Rockville–Another-Wallis-Misfire.html?soid=1103281455502&aid=6aj0XlyUgi0) regarding yet another bag of lies from Slaughterhouse Sue. I plan to summarize that in the next few days, but I thought it was time to talk about something I’ve been struggling with for a while. That would be the issue of rescues that support slaughter. Obviously, I have a huge problem with the entire concept, but I want some input from some other people on this. Just for review, here is the definition of `rescue’:
[res-kyoo] Show IPA verb, res·cued, res·cu·ing, noun
verb (used with object)
1.to free or deliver from confinement, violence, danger, or evil.
2.Law . to liberate or take by forcible or illegal means from lawful custody.
It seems pretty straight forward although I have seen some PSA brain surgeons bastardize it to mean that people are going to come and steal their horses. I’ve already addressed all that, so today I want to talk about the first part, the delivering from violence, danger or evil part. Without a doubt, anybody that is against horse slaughter would agree that slaughter is violent and dangerous for horses. Many would even consider it evil. Sadly, it has come to light that not every rescue feels the same way.
In an earlier entry, I talked about my favorite faux christian, Theresa Manzella and her rescue, Willing Servants. Holy Theresa, is a very vocal advocate of slaughter and her rescue page is quite carefully worded but leaves no doubt what her idea of a `permanent home’ might mean. I have no doubt at all that should slaughter in the US re-open, she will a regular customer. Well, it seems that she has a kindred spirit in New Mexico. One of the readers of this blog left a link about Walkin’ N Circles Ranch in Edgewood, NM. It seems their executive director, Charles Graham is also a slaughter supporter.
. Walkin N Circles is listed as a 501c3 with guidestar.org and has been in operation for ten years. They have several horses listed as `non-rideable’ on their website and ask for sponsorship for them. They state that they have 94 horses currently at their ranch and they also seem to run a boarding business out of the same location. I have a huge problem with this. When you have listed your D20 status as Animal Protection and Welfare (includes Humane Societies and SPCAs), you probably shouldn’t be supporting slaughter. In fact, I think if you are running a rescue for the right reasons, and not as a tax scam to supplement your real business, you should probably be in fairly strong support against slaughter and working to bring about alternatives. The key to rescue is to deliver the animal FROM danger, abuse, etc. not hold it for further torture in a slaughter-house. I hereby declare Charles Graham as a complete jerkwad.
Now, less clear for me are two rescues I was made aware of in Minnesota. One of them is multi-species and the other appears to be mostly focussing on a certain type of horse. Both of these individual rescues have directors that would be considered pro-slaughter. One probably more so than the other. One of the directors has admitted to eating horse meat on at least one occasion. The other has links to anti-slaughter information and even has a `help a slaughter bound horse fund’. Both directors are regular commenters on pro-slaughter pages. I see nowhere on their guidestar pages or websites (well, one of them doesn’t appear to have a working website) that lists that they are in support of slaughter. Now, to be fair, I have seen each of them say that they feel it is a `necessary evil’ and they are in support of `humane’ slaughter but I’m not aware that they actually lobby really hard about it. The problem I have is that rather than spending what seems to be an inordinate amount of time sitting online kissing up to the PSAs and encouraging their lies and asshattery, why don’t they get off their asses and put that same effort into fixing this problem? Saying that you don’t see an alternative for it just doesn’t cut it. I am still very much on the fence about naming and shaming these two rescues, but I’m beyond pissed at the situation and still may choose to do so.
I have to admit I was a bit taken back when I first heard of the concept of rescues being pro-slaughter. That quickly turned to outrage. It would seem to me that it is time to regulate rescues via an accreditation process; which would mean they need to meet certain criteria on an ongoing basis to maintain their non-profit status. While you can’t dictate beliefs to a person, I feel they have an ethical duty to be upfront about their stance on the issue. Imagine how you would feel if you donated money or time to such an organization only to find out they were supporting the inhumane treatment of the very animals they pretend to be rescuing. Imagine the devastation if you surrendered an animal to them in good faith, only to find out they had shipped it to slaughter. It is beyond duplicitous to accept donations to `rescue a horse from slaughter’ when you are spending your free time supporting it. I sure don’t want to have to read about another horse on an overturned slaughter truck or kill pen with paperwork tracing back to a self proclaimed rescue. I want to know how the rest of you feel about it because right now, I just want to kick a few people right where they pee……
Forgive my paint skills (laptop and paintshop do not mix). Should this rescue be revealed?