Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Barbaro's Legacy Burns Brightly As A Beacon of Hope

Barbaro lost his battle for life, but his legacy goes on and burns brightly. He showed the world what hope is and brought to the mainstream media many horse related issues that would otherwise have gone largely unnoticed.

Most Americans didn't even realize horses were being slaughtered in America and sold for overseas human consumption. We didn't realize the horror of the death for these horses. 100,000 horses died brutally in the three foreign owned slaughter houses in 2006. As stewards of companion animals, it is unconscionable to me that we allow horses to be vivisected - literally cut apart - while many of them are still alive and feeling sensation.

If we did imagine slaughter existed, we surely wouldn't have thought that over 92% (USDA numbers) of them were young and healthy. Many are pregnant mares with young foals at their sides.

We wouldn't have thought that in America these businesses would operate at a loss yet profit heavily in Europe where the meat is sold. Why would America allow this slight of hand with income taxes on the part of these Belgian owned slaughterhouses?

We certainly wouldn't believe America would allow the exportation of meat that is toxic to other countries, would we? Well, we do. Horses are medicated regularly with drugs clearly listed "not for use in food source animals." These horses still have the medications in their systems when butchered and shipped to Europe. Most zoos won't even feed this meat to their animals knowing that it is indeed toxic.

Unless we owned horses, we didn't know what Laminitis was, or who the Jacksons are, or about the New Bolton Center and Dr. Dean Richardson.

We didn't know that more than 30,000 horses are stolen each year, and many of them end up at the slaughterhouse.

We didn't know there would be an option for racing surfaces - such as the new Tapeta tracks - that offer safer racing for our Thoroughbreds.

We wouldn't have know that the American Quarter Horse Association is pro-slaughter and yet more Quarter horses go to slaughter than any other breed. We wouldn't have expected this to be acceptable from the very people bringing life to Quarter Horses.

We didn't know about all the many and varied rescues working diligently to rescue horses from slaughter and abuse.

If not for Barbaro, Tim Wooley and Alex Brown of http://www.timwoolleyracing.com we would never have known so many things we know now. We wouldn't have known how to do battle with the greedy, conscienceless pro-slaughter advocates and how to carry this battle to the Senate and the House of Representatives. Many of us now contact our Senators and Reps daily, asking them to end this horror for America's horses...asking for humanity for our horses instead of barbarism.

Interesting that Barbaro and barbarism are closely spelled, isn't it, yet at opposite ends of the moral spectrum?

For this, we are thankful for Barbaro. His legacy will not be forgotten. His fans will champion his cause. He has become bigger than life.

We thought he was born to be a great champion. Instead, he came to change the world.

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Stolen Horse International


The face of death

The face of death
#396, A kind, gentle Thoroughbred

All that is left

All that is left
I will never forget him...I promise. I am so sorry, #396...I don't even have a name for you...

Why would you take my life? Am I a food source animal?

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