Horse News

EWA President Rebuts Newsweek “Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis Promo Story

(The News as We See It) by R.T. Fitch ~ Ex. Director of HfH Advisory Council

Newsweek Steps Into Pile of Wild Horse Pooh

John Holland ~ President of the Equine Welfare Alliance

Only days before Wyoming Representative “Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis makes a bid for a third term in her contested state seat Newsweek ran a two paragraph article that appears to have been penned by the renegade Recluse resident herself.  Classic evidence of Wallis’ authorship includes misrepresentation of facts, poor grammar, lack of a grasp for mathematics and self-serving quotations.

Enraged equestrians, from around the world, broadcast their disbelief and outrage on social networks while John Holland, President of the Equine Welfare Alliance, put the global response into perspective.

Inserted, below, is said Newsweek article with Holland’s response immediately following.  SFTHH recommends that you click HERE to publicly respond to Newsweek’s poor journalistic standards and protest the bloody and predatory business of horse slaughter that the rogue representative from Wyoming endorses.

Newsweek:

“The wild horse is a symbol of the frontier way of life. But in recent years it’s been recast in a less noble role—as a public nuisance. The Bureau of Land Management has tried culling herds through roundups, auctions, and federal corrals. But the feral ranks have nearly tripled, to 69,000 since 1971, and more than half of those horses are roaming free in 10 Western states. Factor in the thousands of horses turned loose during the recession, and the result, the government contends, is a population that’s overwhelmed its habitat.

Wyoming thinks it has a solution. In 2007 Congress blocked the inspection of horse meat, which effectively ended interstate sales and closed the last U.S. abattoir. But selling horse meat intrastate remains legal, and state Rep. Sue Wallis wants to use that fact to license Wyoming’s first slaughterhouse to help owners who can’t afford to care for their animals. While horse advocates call slaughter inhumane, Wallis anticipates enough local demand—from, among others, pet-food makers—to sustain a factory as soon as next year. Besides, she says, for a horse on overgrazed land, slaughter beats starvation.”

John Holland:

You have been duped by Slaughter House Sue Wallis. She is a shameless opportunist who plays the horse slaughter issue to get donations.

Sue has been claiming to be starting a slaughter house under the corporate name Unified Equine LLC since last Winter. But when she announced it and opened a web page talking about what a great investment it would be back last spring, we found there was no such corporation. In fact, it still did not exist when we rechecked months later.

Hyping an investment outside of an offering memorandum is a serious securities violation in most states to say nothing of hyping investment in a non-existent corporation.

The plant you describe is impossible. Do the math!

And the idea that such a slaughter house could be a going concern based on selling horse meat inside Wyoming is absurd. First, Americans don’t eat horse meat, and secondly the entire population of Wyoming is 544,270. That is 3% the size of New York City!

The smallest of the now defunct US slaughter plants (Dallas Crown) killed about 20,000 horses a year. An average horse produces about 500 pounds of meat. That means the plant would produce about 10 million pounds of meat a year to be viable. Sue would have to sell 18 pounds of horse meat to every man woman and child in Wyoming every year to keep a plant profitable. That is of course absolutely impossible in a country where the meat is shunned.

So what investor would put money into that sort of a proposition? Next time, do a little tiny bit of research before you repeat propaganda and soil the News Week brand by being duped.

Nobody could make a living killing horses to sell their meat within Wyoming! There is absolutely no market for horse meat in the US.”

41 replies »

  1. Thanks, John. You are a hero to many horse lovers, and I applaud your continuing efforts to publish the truth. Tricia

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  2. What a joke people. If you are as outraged as I am by this “News” from Newsweek, please put your outrage on Newsweek’s site as I did.

    Click here to do just that.

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  3. This is what our national press has come to; no research on a controversial subject sent to tens of thousands of households? This is a shameful example of our loss of credible information sources. What Wallis wrote is laughable and stupid, IMHO. How did NewsWeek ever accept this as printable? Editors beware; you are misrepresenting our people and the facts on this sad subject that Americans have already weighed in on! mar

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    • Mar, I worked for a newspaper and believe you did as well. My editor would have immediately kicked this “story” back for a fact check and alternate sources. A simple Internet search would have shown the reporter there’s another side and provided plenty of contacts.

      I opened several other NW stories and found them equally one-sided. “NewsWeek” should change its name to “OpinionWeek”.

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      • Oddly enough the magazine business is booming. If NW can’t make the cut apparently they will try anything. They are not in the news business anymore…. mar

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  4. From the LA Times:

    “Can NewsWeek relight the readership flame?
    May 20, 2009|JAMES RAINEY

    The newsweekly aims to carve out a perch among its many competitors with a new, deeper focus. But dwindling circulation in the magazine industry points to a tough battle ahead.

    A house advertisement offers two definitions for the new, revamped NewsWeek magazine: “1. To spark heated debate,” and “2. To illuminate, add clarity.”

    Along with those mission statements, the ad shows a matchbook and burned matches, symbolic of the fire the venerable newsweekly hopes to start.”

    So let the heated debate begin! If NW doesn’t step up and “add clarity”, I suggest folks “illuminate” themselves by opening their matchbooks and setting fire to this “ragmag”.

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    • No “starving” mustangs here. Just those ripe for “killer buyers”.

      I enlarged the pix with helicopters. BLM message to the general public: “See, we don’t ‘get down’ on the wild horses. We ‘encourage’ them into the traps.”

      So the horses were running “hell bent for election” on their own, totally contrary to natural behavior? OF COURSE NOT.

      WE know this is just more predictable, “generated for the uninformed” propaganda crap, but so many others don’t. The mainstream media is tepid at best. Lawsuits are important, but expensive and slow-moving. Protests may attract some attention, but are we seeing real results?

      The BLM has highly-paid PR marketing a “kinder, gentler” image. IMHO, we need to get out of the “blogging business” and concentrate on the “PR business” ASAP.

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  5. Yes, John Holland has given clarity to the controversy although NW has not. But that is what he has done consistently on Equine Slaughter issues. Where was NW really going with this?? Into the trash I think…. with a soon to be unseated Wyoming rep… (knock on wood, turn around 3 times to the right, touch your nose and when you stop, maybe she will be gone!) mar

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  6. I want to know what the name of the dipwad at NW is that is so buddy-buddy with the human equivalent of walking, talking pig dung? Was there a byline? (I’ll go read for myself, of course).

    The editor, as mentioned is more than just a casual observer and should be reprimanded for placing that pile of verbal pooh into print.

    Thanks, John.

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  7. Shame on Newsweek for posting such a ridiculously erroneous load of B.S.
    Thank you John for your informative insight and for calling out Crazy Sue on her unwanted attempts to sell horsemeat that nobody in this country eats. You are a sound voice of reason in the very emotional issue. THANK YOU!!!

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  8. Humph. Newsweek wouldn’t let me post. Maybe there being overloaded with responses.

    All I can say is SHAME ON YOU SLAUGHTERSUE.

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  9. John, Great expose’!

    Folks need to have a copy of the Joint Reports to Congress. There were 59,000 plus horses and burros on BLM and FS Lands in 1974 after the FIRST Census. There was no count in 1971 that I am aware of. The law just past. It seems Salazar the Slaughter Czar continues to try and lower the initial numbers so that the wild ones can be reduced way below their count when the law passed.

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    • there were estimates in 1971 of around 10,000 wild horses left -the total they came up with after the law passed 17000..there was a bill put before congress @ that time to have the wild horses listed as an endangered species, contrary to figures that BLM has put out and never changes despite massive removals is 38,000, yet most figures based on their own estimates put the horses right @ that 17,000 level ..So seems to me we should be asking for them to be listed as an endangered species-so lets start a petition drive to list them and make the public aware that BLM is using flawed and deliberate propagada in its drive to exterminate them.
      According to my computer generated estimates…if the blm tells us there are 800 calico horses left and we can find no more than 38..all of their figures must be 85.% overcounted..based on what we know to be true-there is probably less than 10,000 horses left in the wild

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  10. I could not figure out how to post a comment to the website, but found how to send a letter to the editor—Letters@newsweek.com and sent this—

    Editor— You hardly deserve the title. This little piece is so riven with scientific and legal inaccuracy, one would think this is a campaign ad for a certain Wyoming representative. The public nuisance would more accurately be private livestock grazing on PUBLIC LAND , at $1.35 a cow/calf pair. Private livestock on BLM lands in the Western States outnumber horses by a ratio of 150 to one—there are some 6.5 MILLION LIVESTOCK ON THESE TAXPAYER OWNED LANDS. Furthermore, the public perception (if they even are aware) that the majority of these private livestock belong to small ranchers and families is a hoary myth from long ago—70% of BLM allotments are given to corporate entities such as the Hilton Family Foundation (Hilton Hotels) Anheuser-Busch brewing, and Simplot (in Idaho, largest corporate potato grower) Hardly groups worthy of taxpayer subsidized price supports! Salazar is a rancher, and as head of Bureau of Land Management, looks to protect his interests and cronies—and you should look into the oil, mining, and other extractive industries, besides welfare cowboys, who want ANY congressionally protected species, be it horses or sage grouse, out of the way so they won’t be subject to NEPA and ESA scrutiny when bulldozing their way to profits on PUBLIC LAND.

    For your McKay Coppins, who has exhibited such dismal research skills, I offer him (and YOU, Editor) a reprint of a small piece from the files of the Western Watersheds Project, a small non-profit trying to protect the public lands the corporate elite are slavering over—

    Sincerely, Susan Rudnicki 804 fifth st manhattan beach CA 90266-6649 310-374-4779

    WWP Wins Victory in Nevada
    Online Messenger #173

    (view with pictures, as displayed in Email)
    Western Watersheds Project Wins Victory in Nevada Against Faux Rancher Barrick Gold

    Friends,

    Western Watersheds Project has just won an administrative appeal in Nevada, halting a BLM decision that would have renewed a grazing permit for Paris Livestock, a welfare rancher who subleases a BLM grazing permit held by Barrick Gold, the largest gold mining mega-corporation in the world. “Custom and Culture” indeed !

    Often criticism of environmentally destructive public lands ranching is downplayed in the media and by industry groups who characterize public land ranchers as the “salt o’ the Earth”.

    This Cowboy Mythology is pervasive across the country where the general public is led to believe that a majority of public lands are grazed by ‘mom and pop’, ‘cowboy’ operations whose business enterprise and “custom & culture” would be extinguished if not for their commercial use of our public lands.

    The facts are otherwise; the top 10 percent of public lands grazing permit holders control a breathtaking 65 percent of all livestock on BLM lands and 49 percent of Forest Service lands. The bottom 50 percent of public lands grazing permit holders control a miniscule 7 percent on BLM lands and 3 percent on Forest Service land.

    Much of your public land is grazed by the likes of Mary Hewlett Jaffe (heir to the Hewlett-Packard mega-fortune), who is the largest public land rancher in Central Idaho. The largest welfare rancher in the country is Simplot Inc., a multibillion dollar corporation headquartered in Idaho. Even huge international corporations like Barrick Gold, the largest pure gold mining company in the world, graze vast expanses of public land in Nevada, not because it is an economically viable enterprise, but because it is a politically prudent way for these international coorporations to ‘buy-in’ to the Cowboy Mythology and gain the political support of local county commissions who might otherwise resist these international companies’ acquisition of water and control of land for their environmentally destructive mining operations.

    WWP enjoys sending this little tap on-the-shoulder to Barrick Gold !

    *
    October 7, 2010

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  11. We who care about horses don’t call this woman “Slaughter-Horse Sue” for nothing. She claims to care about animals, but all she talks about is “humane” methods of killing them. Does your wonderful state really need a government representative who’s only claim to fame is to espouse a horse slaughter plant in your state??

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    • I am no defending Slaughterhouse Sue in any way. But I would like to remind people that not everyone in WY knows about Slaughter Sue. My sister doesn’t know her. SS lives HOURS from her. SS is a republican as are most in WY. My sister is one of the rare Democrats.

      You should also be aware that they do have slaughterhouses for exotic animals. I’ve seen their signs from the road on the way to the Pryors last summer.

      This is a state which normally uses a gun for euthanasia rather than calling out a vet. Right or wrong this is the way its done in cowboy country.

      And before you start bashing me for WY think about this. One of the Rockefellers gave Teton Nationl Park a whole bunch of land for the public in the last 10 yrs or so. They had owned private ranch overlooking one of the many lakes. They have one of the Ranger Stations named for him.

      Yellowstone was the first Nationall Recognized Park in this country.

      Bridger-Teton National Park is NOT THE SAME as Bridger Montana–where Sage Creek Rd is—one of the few roads that are somewhat passable up to the Pryors.

      Up at Penn’s Cabin (at the top of the Pryor’s) you overlook Bighorn Canyon. A beautiful sight. And you wonder why the horses don’t want to come down out of the mountains???!!!!

      I guess what I’m saying is Don’t Blame All of WY for the misdeeds of SlaughterSue.

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  12. John, you are great to give a rebuttal to such an individual that has no common sense and definitely no empathy for our heritage and the animals that were here before us. Wyoming should hang its head in shame for electing someone like Sue Wallis. SHe is a self serving individual that must have some motive that she will be admired for this horrible act she is trying to get started. In fact, everyone should shun her from the President on down for her despictable idea of starting slaughter of our horses. I would bet that more racehorses end up in slaughter houses than privately owned horses that no longer can be kept by their owners. The racing industry for years keep breeding horses just to get a great horse like “Zenzatta”. They are a rarity. The racing industry should NOT send any horse to slaughter and anyone wishing to adopt one of these horses should be checked out from top to bottom before any horse is released. A while ago I read an article that a beautiful former race horse that had won $500,000 for its owners when racing sold him/her and it ended up in the slaughter house. THey didn’t check out who the purchaser was and when the monies didn’t come in from her anymore, she/he was dispendable. THis is horrible. No race horse or any other horse should be disposed of like an old piece of furniture. They are God’s creations, the most beautiful and graceful, as well as intelligent, animals that God created and they are our heritage to future generations. We must all get together, as citizens of the United States, to see that all slaughterhouses are shut down. If we pushed and pushed the cruelty of this act until these people that ran and owned the plants are shunned and had no more horses coming to them, they would be shut down permanently. This is what has to happen. This country is humane enough is we all get together to see that our horses and hopefully all horses are admired and saved from this horrible ending. They do not deserve this. I just found out about an Arabian, blind in one eye, that was headed to auction, and I have adopted him. I met him for the first time last week and he is beautiful. THis is an example of how theses animals need our help to intervene and save all of them from this disgusting fate. As far as Sue Wallis is concerned, she should be ashamed of herself for even bringing the subject up again. SHe can be classified in the same category of the BLM, murderers and killers, and nothing short of it.

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  13. Maybe the good people of Wyoming would be less inclined to re-elect Slaughterhouse Sue if there were a big lawsuit filed against her that will include the state of WY if she’s their Rep. She’s doing a lot of damage to the reputation of the state already, and if they know that taxpayers are going to be hit because of legal bills incurred because of her slander, lies, et al, maybe they’ll decide to elect someone who will cost them a little less. Can the EWA file a personal suit against her for something regarding wild horses and let the cost to the state become a campaign issue?

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  14. Thank you John! I heard Sue Wallis is trying to feed horse meat to a captive audience: Prisoners, needy children’s hot lunch programs, seniors in nursing homes. Either way, the idea is repugnant. And as you say, she’s already breached the law by hyping a non-existent LLC.

    Good work!

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    • Also, these groups of people Slaughterhouse Sue says she can feed horsemeat to are PEOPLE WHO CAN’T EVEN OBJECT!! THEY ARE PEOPLE WHO BASICALLY HAVE TO EAT WHATS FED TO THEM! What a blithering dope she is.

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      • very insightful ! hey in australia they go after Oppossums ! maybe sue could go after oppossums in Wy and put them in pet feed as they do in Austrailia ! gross or what? God Save the Animal Critters
        (no offense to austraila; to the wicked officials behind schemes)

        Do Opossums eat Blossoms: a poem by anne

        do O’pposums eat blossoms in my garden at night ?
        do Opoosums eat blossoms when there is no one in sight ?
        do Possums eat blossoms by the moon’s silverly light ?
        do Possums eat blossoms and scurry off at dawn’s first light ?
        if Possums see a me watching them; do I give them a fright ?
        all animals should trust man and man should treat the animals right!

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  15. Has anyone googled McKay Coppins? I did. http://bit.ly/aPBF8W Looks like the writer is a student at Brigham Young Univ and just getting started w/Newsweek online version this year. Very interesting reading here. Not to start a religion war here but it’s hard not to notice this one belongs to the same church as the infamous Cattoors….

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  16. To the dipwad that “planted” the BS in Newsweek and the deadhead editor that allowed this tripe in, and the production records for these human consumption equines is WHERE???? And the drug residue testing (should be 100% since the equines are “collected”, not produced by the KBs) is WHERE????

    So, let’s see if I get this right: (1) Newsweek doesn’t fact check; (2) Newsweek allows staff journalists to submit articles for friends and/or associates; (3) Newsweek doesn’t give a rat’s arse that humans consume dangerous meat.

    Good job Newsweek. I think I’ll start buying the National Inquirer to get my “news”.

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  17. Dear John,

    As always , you have clearly refuted propaganda with factual data.

    Thank you for always being the voice of logic in a sea of irrational beliefs.

    Sincerely,
    Le Ann Box

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  18. Seems Newsweek is bought out too. They keep deleting my posts.
    Please keep posting or send a letter to the editor.
    What a shame. Newsweek is sinking to the pile of bile papers.

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  19. Three words we should all remember: Phenylbutazone (bute) Banamine and Ivermectin. Each label of these common equine medications clearly states that they are not for use in horses intended for food/human consumption. In other words, they aren’t for dog food any more than they are for people food. There are other medications, as well, that carry similar warnings, though these are probably the most widely used.
    Nearly every horse in the United States has, at one time or another, been given one of these meds. Since there’s no way of knowing how long these meds stay in a horse’s system, there are no add-ons to the warnings that read “6 months after a one-time use, it’s OK to slaughter and eat this animal.”
    Unless there’s a solid medical history for each and every horse in a slaughter-bound truck — and there isn’t — there is no way of knowing which horses have been given what meds. The only way to know is to test the meat, and that gets expensive. So much for a cheap source of meat to feed inmates and unsuspecting school children!
    Hopefully the USDA or the FDA would shut her down if the worst happens and she’s given the green light.

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  20. Nora, Thank You–that is probably one (or three) of the MOST important things to remember. That trumps all other arguments.

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  21. As a side note the three drugs noted above have withdrawal periods for cattle which are pretty short. In all likelihood it would be much the same for horses, but that isn’t good enough to be legal. For a drug to be legal to be used on an animal bound for slaughter the drug company has to have done studies to prove how long the drug takes to clear the animals system. These studies will never be done for horses because there is no demand to have equine drugs with stated withdrawal periods.

    Thank goodness this should keep horse meat out of our food chain indefinitely.

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    • Diana,

      Nora cited 2 drugs and there are more equine drugs that have no use in bovine, ovine, porcine or poultry prophylaxsis therapy that haven’t got withdrawel periods because the pharma companies haven’t done the studies because they are for EQUINES ONLY and we don’t eat equine here The feds and states haven’t required such studies because they are for equines and not a US meat species (as you note).

      AND BUTE CANNOT BE USED IN ANY INTENDED FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION ANIMAL PERIOD (that you did not note)! That is the regulatory law in the US.

      The point is, there are no production records or food purity testing post mortum that includes those equine drugs; even in the import markets (Asia, Mexico, Canada and off-shore US waters canner ships)

      There is a great investigative news report out of Indiana (EWA circulated it) about Shipsewanna (sp?) and the Canadian equine slaughter industry/market.

      Maybe RT will reference it here. Some interviewees talk nonsense but overall good piece that was reasonably researched unlike that pooh at Newsweek. I’ll try to get link.

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      • Denise — I read somewhere that there is a test for residual drugs in horse meat. Maybe I read that wrong?? I thought the European Union had developed a test for horse meat coming into their markets, as their restrictions are getting tighter about what chemicals can and can’t be in meat for human consumption.
        As I understand it, the EU is stepping up inspections due to concern about residual equine drugs in meat.
        I suspect that if the EU is already taking this issue into greater consideration, countries like Japan won’t be far behind. There is a market in certain parts of the world for horse meat, but my guess is that it’s on the decline — or will be soon — as concerns about horse meat safety come to the surface.
        In other words, it’s time for the US to seriously start thinking about what it’s going to do with “unwanted” horses.

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      • Nora,

        Lots of points I need to address in your post, but I’m off to vote.

        I’ll be back and address those points. ln the meantime, I’m sure someone here can clarify the testing and geographic specific issues. Remember that we are talking about US equines exported, slaughtered internationally and that meat is typically consumed in that country and or exported to Asia and the EU…some to S. America. When the US plants were open, they did not test for bute ,except once(extremely small sampling v. numbers slaughtered). The positives were coming back in concerning numbers and they (USDA?) stopped testing.

        And not all internaational slaughter plants have EU certs.

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    • It’s very, VERY common for horses at auctions to be given meds before they’re run through the process. Bute, for instance, will disguise some lameness issues, which owners are trying to hide from possible buyers. Some horses are given sedatives so they appear calm and docile. Happens ALL the time.
      Thanks for posting the link, Denise. Nothing new or surprising there to me, but these kinds of news stories keep this issue in the public eye.

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  22. I am relatively new to the issues about horses, their gathering, their slaughter. I am learning so much from you re: the issues of cattle vs horses on public land, horse meat usage for food vs. contamination. I know you all are upset at people like the naive writer at Newsweek and its editor. I am also upset after reading your arguments.
    I think though you would get much further with the media and with the public who need to be educated if you could control your opinions and outrage when speaking with them. In this way they are more likely to listen to you and give you credibility, and listen to you and change is what they need to do to combat people like Ms. Slaughterhouse Sue. I want for the horses what you so knowledgeably articulate, but I also want others to listen to you and give you credence. When you rant, others just blow you off as “those activists.” Bonnie ( forgive me if I sound like a mother and teacher which I admittedly was for my life)

    Like

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