Video: Unified Advocate Wild Horse/Slaughter Press Conference and Rally Packs Oklahoma City

BLM Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board Meeting Overwhelmed with Disgruntled Equine Advocates

The Press Conference in it’s Entirity

(Oklahoma City) – Equine Welfare Advocacy organizations, the Cloud Foundation, Respect4Horses and Wild Horse Freedom Federation held a unified press conference during the lunch break of the BLM’s Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board meeting at the downtown Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Sheraton this day.  The press conference covered the topics of horse slaughter, which Oklahoma politicians are attempting to fast track laws to bring it into their state, and the gross mismanagement of America’s wild horse and burro herds by the Department of Interior’s (DoI) Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

Growing crowd quickly becomes standing room only for press conference ~ photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Growing crowd quickly becomes standing room only for press conference ~ photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Press from all four major networks were on hand while advocates from around the country quickly filled up the existing 60 chairs available and soon the room was packed with the crowd standing and pouring out the door into the hallway to hear the equine advocacy leaders speak.

Simone Netherlands, natural horsemanship trainer, founder of Respect4Horses and principle organizer of the event, opened with an informative presentation on exactly what is happening in the state of Oklahoma with the fast-tracking of legislation to allow predatory horse slaughter plants to be able to slaughter American horses so that their flesh can be shipped overseas to satisfy fringe foreign pallets.  With the roaring support of over 150 spectators it soon became apparent that the bulk of the audience were from Oklahoma and the concept of horse slaughter coming to their state is not an option that they would care to endure.

Dr. Lester Friedlander, DVM and former USDA Veterinarian, next spoke to the inhumanity of horse slaughter and the suffering it causes to an animal that is not intended to be a food animal.

R.T. Fitch, author, writer, blogger and president of Wild Horse Freedom Federation, spoke to the issue of the BLM selling wild horses to known kill buyers for slaughter and produced BLM bulk sales and state brand department documentation, obtained through a WHFF FOIA, which proves that BLM contractors have been selling BLM wild horses to kill buyers.

Lisa Friday, member of the Cloud Foundation’s Board of Directors, displayed graphic pictures depicting the cruelty of BLM helicopter roundups and gave eye witness accounts of abuse during the last BLM helicopter stampede conducted in Utah.

Emmy Award winning cinematographer and the creator of the PBS’s “Cloud” series Ginger Kathrens closed out the educational and informative conference by outlining the broken program and gross mismanagment of our last remaining wild horses and burros and offered sane and humane ways to manage the herds on the range versus attacking them with helicopters, destroying their families and sentencing them to concentration camps for the remainder of their lives.

“I think that the advocates and press walked away with much more knowledge and information on the cruelty of horse slaughter,” stated Dr. Friedlander, “I would travel around the world to save one horse and I think that with arming the audience with this information my translate into saving hundreds of horses if not thousands.”

Simone Netherlands, R.T. Fitch, Ginger Kathrens and Lisa Friday ~ photo by Terry Fitch

Simone Netherlands, R.T. Fitch, Ginger Kathrens and Lisa Friday ~ photo by Terry Fitch

Organizer, Simone Netherlands said, “I hope that we did a service for the people of Oklahoma, today.  They are extremely unhappy and disgruntled over what their state government is attempting to pull off and the over the top attendance of the conference is a clear indication that these citizens want to be heard as well they should”

“I was shocked by the number of attendees,” said Lisa Friday, “Both the state of Oklahoma and we as an advocacy are lucky to have so many great people who truly care about the welfare of horses.”

R.T. Fitch said, “I hope that this sort of active engagement and the high volume of unhappy Americans begins to sink into the skulls of the bonehead BLM.  After attending the first day of the Board meeting most of these advocates now know when the BLM is lying and attempting to pull the wool over their eyes; it’s when their lips are moving.  We are not stupid.”

“It has been years since the BLM has seen that sort of attendance and today they got nothing but a huge dose of more bad press.” stated Ginger Kathrens, “All those great people want is what is best for their state and for the wild horses out west; we are exceedingly lucky to be supported and to be able to give back to such a great bunch of positive and compassionate people.”

Immediately following the press conference a rally was staged outside with dozens of signs, banners, chants, circulating horse trailers with banners and even a miniature horse participating.

Day two of the BLM’s board meeting commences tomorrow, Tuesday, and be viewed live on www.blm.gov/live.

25 comments on “Video: Unified Advocate Wild Horse/Slaughter Press Conference and Rally Packs Oklahoma City

  1. /really grateful for the uploading of this for the benifit of those of us who could not be there! thank you all for giving horses a voice, and sharing the day on video

    • I too was glad to be able to be an arm chair supporter.thanks for streaming the rally. I hope that all these legislators took time to pay attention.

  2. It was so great to be among the horse advocates today in OKC. Wonderful finally meeting all the leaders. RT you were a great cheerleader out on the street. So was Simone. We really got lots of attention from people passing by the hotel.

  3. What a great group of well-spoken advocates were there to be a voice for the horses! Thank you RT and everyone for a job well-done.

  4. I sincerely appreciate all of you for your commitment to saving the wildhorses….they have been put through enough pain and suffering…last night I didn’t sleep well thinking of the last BLM roundup where a mare and her foal were separated….I will never understand how people can act so callously …This has to end…the government has to return the wildhorses to their rangeland and stop the disgusting control that the Bureau of Land Management has over the wildhorses….The pro-slaughter people better realize that by selling horsemeat to European countries it will eventually destroy their beef market.. even I have second thoughts about cooking with beef already.. I wish I could have been there in person but be assured that you were all in my thoughts today….sending Hope for all the Wildhorses in AMERICA….sending Faith that the US government will hold the BLM accountable for their murderous intentions with the wildhorses . and sending JUSTICE that the horseslaughterhouses are not returned to the US and that the kill buyers have to start digging dithces to make their living…seedy characters all…

  5. So glad the protest turned out so well. Congratulations for your spirited standing up for the horses. They have done so much for humans and are healing presences on the Earth. To treat them despicably and without respect is an abomination. BLM officials, as well s USFS and many state Depts of Fish and Game have been stabbing the wild horses in the back for decades. Now it is time we call this to a stop. Together we can turn this dreadful situation around. The horses are being set up by thoughtless people. But we must be willing to dare and take the necessary steps so that these changes can occur. Again so please to hear the protest went so well. Good fortune tomorrow at the national whb advisory meeting!

  6. I am so thankful to everyone that was able to attend and for their strong conviction to right the wrong that’s been inflicted upon our beautiful wild horses and burros. It’s time the public becomes aware and that we must stop the crimes against America’s iconic wild horses NOW! I loved Dr. Friedlander’s comment “I would travel around the world to save one horse”.Speaks volumn of his compassion, dedication and commitment to the lives of these magnificent and loyal creatures! I’m sure everyone who attended and even the press walked away with a lot more knowledge and understanding about the roundups and the horrific use of horseslaughter, along with it’s many consequences. Thank you all, as always, for being a voice for the voiceless. You guys are the greatest!

  7. Wow – what a wonderful turnout! Does sound like Oklahomans (?) don’t want this plant to open. And they came out!! Congratulations – keep up the good work – I would have been so proud to have been there – but still am so proud!!!!

  8. Kudos to all of you for championing the effort to protect & defend our wild horses as well as illuminating the abuses & failures of the BLM. I will be calling the governor of OK to veto the horse slaughter bill….even though I live in another state. Let’s all light up her phones!

  9. Wonderful job…I could not be there, but was there in spirit and prayer. I will never give up the fight for all our equines..Perhaps the tides are turning and the truth emerging. I think I will email one of the Oklahoma newspapers and give them my opinion from a person living in a state where the foreign company tried to override the will of its citizens. It is hard for me to get the visions of those poor horses arriving at the slaughter plant. It is frozen in my mind. It was devasting for me to see them knowing that there was nothing I could do to save them. Some often come to me as a Reiki master. I am still waiting for any of the 4 large networks to show anything. Perhaps there will be something on our issue. Again, may God Bless and keep all of the Warriors as you confront the evil ones.

  10. Reblogged this on Serenity's Musings and commented:
    Equine Welfare Advocacy organizations, the Cloud Foundation, Respect4Horses and Wild Horse Freedom Federation held a unified press conference during the lunch break of the BLM’s Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board meeting at the downtown Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Sheraton this day. The press conference covered the topics of horse slaughter, which Oklahoma politicians are attempting to fast track laws to bring it into their state, and the gross mismanagement of America’s wild horse and burro herds by the Department of Interior’s (DoI) Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

  11. More forceful and focused statements than ever from you! Thank you Simone and Anne M for all your preparation. The numbers were good for once. That makes me happy. I enjoyed watching BLM back peddling. I just do not trust anything they say or do.

    The Target gender is the mare. BLM, you had better not be practicing medicine in the field. If you can’t manage our wild ones we can. But if we do you will lose all your perky pocket change from slaughter. It is about time mustanging stopped. We can manage fewer horses more closely but we are not willing to continue to lose whole herds and their range lands. Those who have been held captive and can be returned should be.

    Time to be rid of BLM. The wild Horse and Burro Program should stand on its own with a citizen board and independent study to guide it. Give it the same budget and equipment and employees and information and we will improve range for all wildlife and horses and burros. Just push the cattle back off the principal range. Maybe the Sage Grouse will recover with fewer cattle.

  12. For those of you who haven’t realized it but those government officials have been foreclosed on by the OPPT ONE PEOPLES PUBLIC TRUST. Any unlawful acts committed by these officials can be held against them under their personal liability! All you need to do is serve them with the OPPT Courtesy Notice and Penalty schedule and I guarantee that they will back off! Documents are available at the OPPT website.

  13. Excellent rally. Made a lot of news across the country. You are being called horse advocates also, not animal rights loonies. Not being associated with peta. Most stories i read were positive.

  14. Thank you so much for your time and effort. I hope the public pushes an investigation into ethics violations for those who wrote and supported this bill that are owners or relatives of owners of Auction Barns. I watched the video until my computer shut it down. Wonderful presentations – great work. Thank you again for your time and efforts.

  15. I felt so blessed to have been there with so many great folks! The energy was truly amazing and I think we all felt the energy of people watching the BLM meeting on line. So much left to do but with people like RT, Ginger, Suzanne, Simone and all the great folks involved with this movement, I know the force will continue to grow every day. Thank you RT for your inspiring messages and motivation. Hope our paths cross again soon.

  16. lots of the usual BLM horse …poop
    thank you advocates for making the internet listening palatable and still hopeful. Our numbers are increasing. Keep working and promoting to save the wild horses and burros!

  17. I have read the 2013 budget,, there is NO money in the budget for horse slaughter. They do NOT even have enough money for the inspection of the regular slaughter houses. This corruption must STOP, I am tired of the special interests groups expecting us to pay for something we do NOT want nor believe in. I AM NOT PAYING TO KILL OUR HORSES

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