Wild Horse Outrage Greets President Obama in Vegas

Written by Simone Netherlands and Elyse Gardner

(©Photography by Elyse Gardner, Craig Downer, Simone Netherlands and friends)

Wild Horse Advocates ask the President to say “NEIGH” to BLM Round-ups

LAS VEGAS (SFTHH) – It seems people are very serious about saving the lives and freedom of America’s wild horses and stopping the gruesome practice of horse slaughter, where many of our wild mustangs still end their lives in terror together with over one hundred thousand domestic horses yearly.

Wildlife ecologist Craig Downer and humane observer Elyse Gardner certainly are, and they came to Las Vegas to join wildlife photographer Arlene Gawne (for Cloud foundation) and horse trainer Simone Netherlands (for Respect4horses), plus over 50 other brave horse welfare advocates. In the crowded city of Las Vegas, their spirits were as one while standing up together for all horses, as they carried out one of the largest protests on record against the BLM and against horse slaughter.

As President Obama arrived in Las Vegas for a historic visit, he was greeted by protesters on several legs of his missions here, and on his way back to Air force one, he got a real good look at the banners going only 5 miles an hour around a corner, where protesters were strategically positioned. When Obama was still a Senator, he was a cosponsor of the ban on horse slaughter. Now that he could easily do something about the BLM and about the horse slaughter bill, he has not so much as said a word about it.

Drivers honked and pedestrians signed petitions as people from all over the country as well as other countries made strong statements calling for the Obama administration to support the ban on horse slaughter and to put an immediate halt to the roundups and give America’s horses their small, rightful share of our vast resources of public land. At several stops during the day, interviews were recorded by several news stations. KlaAS TV 8, ABC 13 and Channel 8.

First Stop: From 1:30 to 4:00 p.m, wild horse defenders gathered in front of the Federal Courthouse in downtown Las Vegas, home to Senator John Ensign and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. This protest was well attended by the public and media as Reno’s KLAS-8 filmed protesters as well as the opening talk given by Elyse Gardner, as well as the smallest and cutest protestor of all.

Second stop: After this people disbursed all across the Las Vegas Strip, handing out information and gathering petition signatures.  Locations where from the New York New York Hotel, to the Fashion Show Mall, to overpasses, to Caesars Palace.

Around 6pm mayhem ensued as word was heard that president Obama was arriving. We all hurried in our cars and split up to each side of MCarran airport.

One set of Protesters, spear headed by Gina were able to be in front of Obama’s limo and display the banners. The other group was at a location where 2 news stations interviewed with Craig Downer, Elyse Gardner and Simone Netherlands.

An interesting little tit bit of information was disclosed by a Mr. Nick, former feedlot owner hired by the BLM, now BLM opponent.  According to him the reason that the BLM has executed the Calico round up during the winter months instead of in September as was originally on their schedule, is that they hired a “buddy” to receive the Calico horses, (to fatten his pockets with our tax dollars) and this “buddy” did not have his feedlot even built or ready for the horses until December. They simply could not round them up until the feedlot was finally built. This information is from a first hand reliable source and it certainly explains a lot, doesn’t it?

After all the excitement and running around we ended the day with a wonderful home made dinner at Arlene’s house. She is the most gracious wonderful host, savvy business woman, and an incredible new asset to the horse welfare advocacy movement. Our profound thanks go out to her for her incredible enthusiasm and organization. Also many thanks and hugs to all wonderful volunteers, too many to name them all, but you know who you are.

The next day, on Feb 19th, President Obama was leaving Las Vegas. To top off the successful event, with a little luck and a little help from higher up, we were able to present the banners right in front of his face when he turned into the small back road to Air Force one. He must think by now that we are a very efficient and especially very large organized bunch, ha.

Needless to say, we all feel renewed hope and excitement with the outcome of this giant combined effort to spread awareness against horse cruelty, not only advertised to the American people and to many tourists of the world, but to Mr. President Obama himself.

P.S. Mr Harry Reid has asked one of our volunteers how many Nevadans exactly are against the roundups. She would like to ask for everyone’s help in letting him know exactly how many. So let’s place some (but hopefully many) phone calls and faxes to his office for a while especially with the pressure of election time.

For additional Pictures and Photos visit The Cloud Foundation’s Blog

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43 comments on “Wild Horse Outrage Greets President Obama in Vegas

  1. “….P.S. Mr Harry Reid has asked one of our volunteers how many Nevadans exactly are against the roundups. She would like to ask for everyone’s help in letting him know exactly how many. So let’s place some (but hopefully many) phone calls and faxes to his office for a while especially with the pressure of election time.”

    (1) Mr. Reid represents MORE than Nevadans. He, particularly on issues that affect the enitire Nation, represents EVERY American (and he KNOWS IT!…what’s with the parochial “Nevada” info request?!?….stall tactic?…claiming ignorance? HAH!) .
    (2) WE HAVE BEEN CALLING, AND WRITING AND CALLING AND SIGNING PETITIONS, AND HE KNOWS IT! Does he need a special invitation to action? For crying out loud, he’s part of the problem.

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    • D., you hit the nail on the head! This a classic stall tactic. Reid is trying to distract us with his attempt at a roadblock. Personally, I can walk, chew gum, and do a lot of other things simultaneously.

      As Senate Majority Leader, Reid treasures his place on the big stage. How much time does he spend addressing Nevada’s issues? Maybe a lack of attention is why he needed the President to prop up his re-election bid. Who are his opponents? Have they take positions on Wild Horse issues?

      If he thinks this blip on our radar screen will slow us down, he’s sadly mistaken.

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    • He needs to realize just what you said — this affects all taxpayers and esp. all Americans who are concerned about our National Treasures in the West. His comments are like throwing stuff out of a moving car or something to slow down his pursuers. What a snake in the grass.

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  2. I applaud and deeply thank all the participants of the Nevada protests. I sincerely thank every individual that has taken their time and money, especially in this economy to speak for equines across our Nation.

    And yes, we should continue to call, write, email, protest on a daily basis for our equines. Seems now that Mr. Reid is clueless (as usual) as to the plight of our equines (wild and domesticated) and needs a very specific and direct form of communication from equine welfare advocates….I suggest we bombard his AND Ms. Pelosi with our outrage and reference the request he, himself has stated with a p.s. Mr Reid/Ms Pelosi, as the primary leadership in Congress you work for every American, not just your district or state.

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    • You are so right, D Masters! Reid and Pelosi should be on our list for daily contact as they are the figurehead leaders for those houses.

      As far as Reid goes, he is not clueless about the wild horses. More like clueless that much of the American public understands he is like a snake in the grass. He is, after all, said to have been very instrumental in both the inclusion of and the passage of the 2004 Burns Amendment which gutted much of the protections for wild horses under the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses & Burros Act. I don’t believe Reid has ever been a friend to wild horses but maybe he’d give at least lip service to their plight if he thinks supporting them will help his re-election bid…

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  3. D. Masters :I applaud and deeply thank all the participants of the Nevada protests. I sincerely thank every individual that has taken their time and money, especially in this economy to speak for equines across our Nation.
    And yes, we should continue to call, write, email, protest on a daily basis for our equines. Seems now that Mr. Reid is clueless (as usual) as to the plight of our equines (wild and domesticated) and needs a very specific and direct form of communication from equine welfare advocates….I suggest we bombard his AND Ms. Pelosi with our outrage and reference the request he, himself has stated with a p.s. Mr Reid/Ms Pelosi, as the primary leadership in Congress you work for every American, not just your district or state.

    …sorry about the typo. It should read “….his and Ms Pelosi’s offices…”

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  4. Wild Horse Friends,
    Ms. Lily, my rescued senior BLM mustang mare, and I thank you for your participation. We wish we could have been there too!

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  5. Thank you Nevada horse warriors, you did a wonderful job 🙂 I wanted to go in the worse way, and just couldn’t do it. I am going to be there April 21, so if anything is planned, count me in. I went to Senator Ried’s office last year and gave his aide a mouth full, and I plan on doing it again, if anyone whats to join me, we’ll meet up. I’m thinking of going to the blm office and try to see the heartbroken horses in Fallon, just to let them know, we are here and they are not going to be forgotton.

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  6. This is awesome, congratulations and my personal thanks to everyone involved on the front and behind the scenes, keep the calls, e-mails and letters rolling guys. Thanks RT for keeping us updated too, I was so worried when I heard that Obama was in Denver on 18th and I thought that this was all happening and he wasnt there to witness it!!! I am going out to hug all of my horses now and thank my lucky stars that I have the in my life!

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    • A big thanks to Simone and Elyse who stayed up late last night in Vegas to send me the photos and articles while I am in Southern Africa and then I sent them back to you guys…now that is what I call team work and using the internet to it’s fullest. (You see, I can work away while you folks in the U.S. are asleep, that’s how I get the jump on things…when I am here)

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  7. Ooooh RT, give my love to southern africa, where are u (sorry off topic) but I was born in Zimbabwe and spent a large portion of my life in Zimbabwe and South Africa (Johannesburg) before moving to England and now Indiana.

    Isnt the internet wonderful, so far away but keeps us all so close!!

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  8. Sen Reid’s staffer wants to know the exact number of people support who support this? What an odd request. Sen Reid is no friend to the wild horses. He colluded with Conrad Burns on the Burns amendment. I’d spend my time with allies on this, not a Senator who doesn’t care about horses and who is facing such a tough re-election that he will never find the courage to lose a rancher’s vote.

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    • He may be tryin’ to prepare for the famous Backpedal Dance, if this should prove there are more Nevadans against the roundups than for them, and by extension more of America against them.
      Or, faced with the protest, he had to find SOMETHING to say.
      If he does backpedal, that would be a fine thing. While we will aways know his TRUE colors, a voice is a voice; we take our victories wherever we find them.

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    • Just goes to show you that Reid hasn’t even bothered to look at the 10,000 signatures that were on that petition to stop the round ups…he did get a copy! and he has to ask? Lame

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  9. I want to add my thanks to everyone who organized and participated in the Las Vegas protest. They, as well as others throughout the country, are a testament to the dedication and growing strength of our movement.

    I was concerned when I learned Mr. Obama had arrived at 6:15, and the protests were scheduled to wrap up at 6:30. But our tenacious Wild Horse supporters stayed on until he departed, making sure the President saw the message. I sincerely hope personally witnessing this protest had an impact on him, and results in action on his part.

    Again, my deepest gratitude to all who represented the tens of thousands of American Wild Horse advocates across our nation. I am so proud of you!

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  10. Our Frosty, a Nevada BLM mustang pulled from slaughter pens in Ohio, thanks everyone for their support!!! She is a wonderful horse and is a poster child for what can and does happen to alot of mustangs once they are titled and lose what little protection they have.

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  11. On behalf of the Coyote Canyon Wild Horse Herd awaiting return to their Home on the Range, many thanks for the personal time and energy that each individaul contributed to this demonstration as well as others across the Nation. Utilizing our Public lands for multiple use is a Congressional Mandate as well as conservation of and maintaining wild horse and burro herds on their native ranges. This is OUR historical and cultural inventory.

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  12. Thank you so much dear friends, for your support and for your phone calls to legislators.

    I would like to clarify something real quick because I realize that it might sound like Mr. Harry Reid personally came out to ask us that question. He did not.
    He asked this question to Gina, one of our awesome volunteers, on a different occasion when she met him. I am sorry if this sounded confusing.

    We all realize that he is a couard and just wants to make it sound like he actually cares, we all know actions speak louder than words.
    However we thought it was a good idea anyways to surprise him with a bigger response than he anticipates, he is very vulnerable right now, because his reelection is not assured at all. We would like to at least see him sweat a little.

    Also the President never saw our protest in full glory, but he did see one or two banners each time. (unless he closed his eyes) This is because most volunteers had left by then, and the remaining hard core had to split up in order to have the best change to catch him.

    I would herewith like to encourage anyone, anyone at all to come to future events like this, and also to Washington DC on March 25th. You do not have to be an expert on the issues and you do not even have to be a horse person. The only requirement is that you be against cruelty to animals.

    “Justice is the sword we carry”.

    Thanks,
    Simone.

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  13. WHAT A DYNAMIC GROUP OF PEOPLE–AND MORE KEEP COMING. THIS IS THE REAL AMERICA–OUR AMERICA, OUR HORSES, OUR LAND. VIVA LAS VEGAS!!!!

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  14. great job everyone!! it is about time president obama looked around him.
    how fortunate that his itinerary took him to nevada where the BLM is doing it’s crime!
    let’s keep after him!

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  15. Excellent job everyone in Vegas and in Carson City on Saturday! I have to think, even 5 years ago we didn’t have this wonderful network that we do now, via the internet.

    BLM can’t get away with half the stuff they used due to the fact that our information is now ‘hot off the press’ within hours and even minutes sometimes of happening or organizing. We’re not going away and were getting stronger, more visable and United everyday! Thanks to all of you for standing up for OUR horses!

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  16. Thank you to all of you that were able to be in Las Vegas to show Obama that the American people are oposed to the removal of our heritage herds from their native ranges and the squander of our tax dollars. Bravo! Whatever we have to do, we must do to save our wild herds.

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  17. This makes me so sick to see horses having to go throw this as much as horses have done for people riding them around on there backs why ppl want to kill them is so sad the made room for the dam polor bears why not the horses

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  18. Many heartfelt thanks to our folks on the street who took part in this great protest. Let’s hope Obama got the word. We at The International Blessed Broodmare Project are doing our part in donations and spreading the word. Expose these murderous horse thieves to everyone, I say! People need to know their names. The BLM is not fit for managing our Mustangs.

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      • Hi Linda, I am spending this week at several blogs lookng for opportunities, but haven’t done much there either. Wanting to share the new found evidence of cheatgrass and wildfire connection to the wild horses as a source of fire control. I was lucky to find one of my Huffinton favorite bloggers complaining about government waste so posted there about BLM. I am reading though, always looking for ammuniton! Anything new at DOI this week that I need to vote for? They are just about to wrap up I think? You and so many really outdid yourselves with such good ideas.

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      • Hey, friend. So good to hear from you. “Opportunities” as in jobs? Whatever you’re seeking, I’m sending all good energy your way, so get in what those of us who do yoga call the “receiving position”!

        No new Ideas/votes on the wild ones on the DOI site. As you know, they aren’t revealing “agree/disagree” numbers, so it’s hard to figure out if folks just aren’t voting, or the Dark Side is cancelling out votes.

        Lots of Hi-tech, info-sharing stuff. I asked for translations of “technospeak” and got some pretty good explanations, so I voted for them. Also, some criticisms of crappy government culture by employees. Why am I not surprised?

        On the lighter side, got a response to my comment re:”graduating” ideas to off-topic. It’s under the Idea where “Transparency” is missspellled (guess I can’t be too critical). I think the Moderator was kind of tickled, and actually agreed it was a questionable choice of words.

        Catch you later. L.

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  19. Thanks to all of you were at this proteste from one who could not. I voted for Obama, will not again if he doesn’t support stopping this mad notion of slaughtering any horse wild or domesticated. MR. REID WE ARE WATCHING YOU CLOSRLY TOO !

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  20. WOW!!! Congratulations on all you efforts and for letting the world know we are working hard on equine issues. It was especially gratifying to know President Obama could not miss the point.

    Becky

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  21. Viva Las Vegas! BRAVO to all!
    I own, ride and show 3 BLM horses from Nevada.
    I am SOOOO PLEASED TO SEE NEVADANS finally stand up for OUR horses.

    I was in LA for the protest in Jan. Sorry I couldn’t make it from Chicago for this.

    With Sen Reid’s re-election in the balance I hope he tries to help…or he deserves to be ousted.

    Congrats for seizing a great opportunity to access Press. Obama directly. Thank you! Jean Turnmire

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  22. Thank You, everyone that works to save our National Heritage, the Wild Horses of America….all please, continue writing,calling and faxing your Senators and Congressmen and Women to stop this removal of our horses from their lands…

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  23. Great work, people, but don’t hold your breath waiting for Obama or Reid to do something to stop the slaughter. All they care about is money and power. They don’t care about people, never mind horses.

    Like

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