So, yesterday was a big day in the slaughter wars. As we all know, the United Horseturds put on their shit kickers and best ten gallon hats to show up in Oklahoma to show how badly they all want to see horses suffer horrible deaths in slaughter houses. We’re not too sure why they feel that only people wearing cowboy costumes have any interest in horse welfare or should have a say, but they are quite delighted with themselves that people showed up. Never mind the fact that the reason they had any turn out at all was because the Farm Bureau got involved to prop up their numbers…We also know that at least a few people in attendance were not supporters of slaughter. Apparently, the `numbers’ were boosted by the number of reporters and legislative assistants to the point that they were said to make up over half of the attendance. I can only attribute this to everybody liking a good freak show and the aspiring horse eaters are basically the equine version of the Westboro Baptists. In other words, they’ll turn up for the opening of an envelope if they have a chance to spread their hateful message. The word on the street is that the few that managed to mumble a few sentences were decidedly uniformed and couldn’t really answer anything without regurgitating from the UH script. Well done!
Meanwhile, in Washington D.C. the SAFE Act was introduced yesterday. This would ban the slaughter and transport of all horses for human consumption. If this is passed into law, it really won’t matter what Oklahoma does. The SAFE Act has bipartisan support and now is the time to make your voices heard as well. You don’t have to wear a costume or even leave your house to make a difference. Just call and email your Senators and representatives and ask them to cosponsor if they haven’t already. Show your support to the ones that already have as well. (http://www.capwiz.com/aspca/issues/alert/?alertid=62499526&type=TA) This is more important than ever given some other disturbing news that has just come to light.
Front Range Equine (http://www.frontrangeequinerescue.org), of Larkspur, Colorado has recently received copies of applications for four horse slaughter plants. They would be in Tennessee, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Iowa. Now, we already know that Missouri and Iowa have basically an infestation of assholes when it comes to cruelty to animals, being the homes of Mindy `Puppymill’ Patterson, and Rep. Steve `Crazyass’ King. Both those people routinely fight any proposed legislation that would give stiffer penalties for animal neglect and abuse, and as we discussed earlier (https://shedrowconfessions.wordpress.com/2012/08/01/slaughterhouse-sue-finds-her-soulmate/), Crazyass King is pretty much down with any form of animal abuse as long as it turns a buck. While I realize there are many good people in those states, let’s just say that people like King and Patterson wouldn’t have the platforms they do if there weren’t several like-minded assholes to support them. Since I can’t really summarize that Front Range reported any better than they already have, here is their message in its entirety:
“LARKSPUR, COLORADO – Front Range Equine Rescue (FRER) has received copies of four previously undiscovered applications for new horse slaughter plants – in Tennessee, Missouri, Oklahoma and Iowa – bringing the number of pending applications to six. Two of the applications are over nine months old, despite longstanding official denials about any more new applications. The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), which inspects animals and meat in American slaughterhouses under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, has stated that the American beef supply is safe from adulteration with horse meat only because horses are not slaughtered in America. If horse slaughter does begin again in America, the entire American meat supply is threatened with contamination. The proposed plants are in Tennessee, Oklahoma, Iowa, and Missouri.
These applications demonstrate that profiteers ignore all warning signs in the quest for financial gain, even when their efforts endanger consumers, necessitate horrific cruelty, and register gross disrespect for this iconic species so well loved by most Americans. FRER has already established in formal legal filings that horse meat from American horses is a toxic stew, that there is no humane way for a horse to be slaughtered for consumption, and that the environmental effects of a horse slaughter plant can be devastating to local communities and citizens. FRER has proven that there is no way to safely produce horse meat, and highlighted the tragedy of companion, race, and wild horses ending their lives on a meat hook in detailed legal filings with USDA, the Food and Drug Administration, and the Bureau of Land Management.
FRER is dedicated to stopping the reinstitution of horse slaughter, and eighty percent of the American public agrees that horse slaughter should be banned. According to FRER’s President Hilary Wood, “FRER will carry out its public campaigns and legal work for as long as it takes to eliminate the possibility of horse slaughter in America. We will investigate each and every new facility, and will come to the aid of horse-loving citizens in towns like Gallatin, Missouri (Rains Natural Meats), Woodbury, Tennessee (Trail South Meat Processing), Washington, Oklahoma (Oklahoma Meat Co.), and Sigourney, Iowa (Responsible Transportation), where these misguided attempts to kill American horses have been made.”
Despite the financial woes of the federal government, and despite the undeniable truth about the suffering and adulteration of horse meat inherent in horse slaughter, FSIS and the USDA seem to be favorable to this unseemly business endeavor. While FSIS has the power to deny or delay the review of these applications, its recent conduct suggests it is shirking its public responsibility in preference to these unwanted operations, which serve only those who make money on the brutal death of American horses.
Ms. Wood added, “The slaughterers have misled the public and public servants into thinking horse slaughter is necessary and humane, when it is anything but. All American horses can be supported by public programs imposing limits on overbreeding, as well as those by FRER and similar groups that subsidize sterilizations, necessary euthanasia, and offer re-homing guidance. We encourage Americans who love horses to step up to protect the animals they love, rather than letting them endure a prolonged trip to a brutal and horrible end to be served on a foreign dinner plate.”
Hilary Wood/FRER, 719-481-1490 firstname.lastname@example.org
Front Range Equine Rescue is a 501c3 non-profit working to end the abuse and neglect of horses through rescue and education. Since 1997, FRER has assisted thousands of horses through its rescue and educational programs. Many of FRER’s rescued horses are obtained directly from livestock auctions and feed lots, which without FRER’s intervention would have shipped to slaughter.”
So, now you know what Slaughterhouse Suey has been up to behind closed doors. When slaughter for consumption ended in 2007, this country only supported three facilities. Since that time, the only thing that really changed is the location of where these animals are being slaughtered. Essentially, the same number of American horses are still being slaughtered every year and admittedly we are breeding less. Yet, they claim there is even more neglect, starvation and abandonment. So, tell me where they are going to get all these horses to slaughter in order to keep these facilities profitable? If you think they don’t have their eye on the wild horses and breeding for slaughter, you’re very naive. The old, skinny and sick animals will still have no place to go as they aren’t what makes a good meal. Make no mistake, what they are trying to do has NOTHING to do with equine welfare, but all about money. Them telling everybody it’s about equine welfare is just a shit sandwich they are trying to serve up to the general public so they can get their own way. Please make your voices heard and educate people. Now, more than ever, it is imperative to get the word out.