Craig To the Editor,
Thanks to the animal rights movement and many well-meaning but misinformed animal lovers, the slaughter of unwanted horses is now essentially banned in all 50 states. Unwanted horses are now being shipped, often for a great many miles, to be slaughtered humanely in Canada or not-so-humanely in Mexico. Senate Bill 311 will ban the transport of horses for human consumption within the U.S. and across borders to Canada and Mexico. At the same time, the price of hay and grain has skyrocketed. Have you noticed the low-priced horses in the want ads? This past winter, there have been two instances in Colorado of dead and starving horses found in "horse rescue" operations, where it appears well-meaning people "saved" horses but didn't realize you have to feed them.
I was born horse-crazy and always owned at least one from the age of 14 until I was 72 and the last resident of our little equine nursing home died of old age. We have a lot more money since she died. I believe I would rather have my toenails pulled out than be forced to watch a horse killed and butchered, but if we still had horses and found ourselves unable to care for them, and could not find a good, safe home for them, I would far rather see them go to slaughter than to starve to death.
Until we can figure out a way to get our horse overpopulation under control, I think we need not less, but more slaughter facilities in the U.S. I would like to see close regulation of both the slaughter and the transportation, to keep the whole process as humane as possible. SB 311 is under referral in the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, and googling it will give you a list of the members of the committee. I suggest that those who agree with the need for humane horse slaughter contact the members of the committee and make their feelings known.
We consider ourselves environmentalists. Always remember that the animal rights movement is to environmentalism as astrology is to astronomy.