If you aren’t aware, last week in a bi-partisan effort, both political parties with our courageous leader, came together for the sake of slaughtering horses once again in the US. In 2006, Congress effectively shut down all horse slaughtering plants in the US by preventing funds allocated for the inspections of the meat. Without a USDA inspection, the meat could not be sold for human consumption. Thus, the slaughter industry in the US was snuffed out.
On November 18th, Congress re-approved these USDA funds in a budget meeting. The horse slaughter business could be up and running in a matter of weeks again. Obama signed off on the bill, despite the campaign promise he made in 2008 to permanently ban it, and 70% of American’s disapproving of the practice.
There are many sides to the argument, but here’s my three point case as to why it should not be tolerated in the States:
1) Horses are not considered livestock, and should not be treated as such. The USDA does not classify them as livestock, according to the Live Stock Mandatory Reporting Act of 1999. Horses are performance and sport animals, they are companions and pets, therapy animals, and even police officers.
2) There is no way to humanely slaughter horses in a systematic, factory-like way. Horses are skiddish, head-shy animals with a strong flight response when stressed. Unlike cows, horses are extraordinarily flexible and panic very easily, making an accurate shot with a captive bolt gun in the right place 100% of the time nearly impossible. As we have seen in Canada and Mexico, horses are often strung up and skinned while still alive.
3) Lastly, horses in the US are not raised for meat. They are used often for riding, driving and racing, which often lends these animals to be administered steroids, wormers and a drug called Phenylbutazone commonly referred to as “bute”, which are banned for use in food animals. These horses going to slaughter have no historical record of the drugs administered in their past lives, making the meat sold for human consumption much more dangerous than the standard feed-lot raised cow.
Shame on Congress, shame on Obama and shame on all the animal rights and horse organizations out there supporting this measure, which now ensures our tax dollars are funding this travesty.
This is what we have to look forward to in the US.
- http://www.kaufmanzoning.net/foia.htm – a record of abuse in the US