Horse News

For the Horses there is no Sunday

OpEd by R.T. Fitch ~ President of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Equine Abuse Takes No Day Off

New Foal being run in the heat by BLM contract helicopter, Sunday, August 14th, 2011 ~ photo by Laura Leigh

On our blog we attempt to either post or write a positive and, hopefully, uplifting article for publication on Sunday.  It is our hope that everyone has the opportunity to rest, relax and recharge their emotional and spiritual batteries before heading into another week of survival in a world turned upside down.  The past two Sundays nothing, absolutely not one word has been published at “Straight from the Horse’s Heart“.

Why was that, was there not even one glimmer of good news or a singular bright shining light glowing somewhere that could be shared…if there was I either couldn’t find it or the guilt that I felt was gnawing at me too deeply to allow myself to turn my back on issues that continue to fester and just won’t go away…so we went underground for the day.

Although not displayed in glaring print or screaming to the world in a published press release there was work going on Sunday…lots of it.

In west Texas there are, now, qualified and undisclosed observers in the field attempting to bring reality and clarity to the sensationalized misinformation over the Presidio horses headed across the border to slaughter.  This is not a new situation, it goes on daily and has been exposed as cruel and inhumane in the past but it will not ever go away until the  American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act of 2011, S.B. 1176, to prohibit the sale or transport of horses or equine parts in interstate or foreign commerce with the intent of processing for human consumption is passed.  This practice will not stop until our elected representatives take action.  We can jump up and down all day long screaming about the inhumane practice but until it is legislated out of business, which it currently is not, then the practice will continue.  Sunday, in the quiet of their dens or from their iPhones on their patios Americans where writing their elected officials and journalists had their sights set on west Texas, work was going on.

In north west Nevada a BLM helicopter contractor was fracturing wild horse families, running weak and just born babies into oblivion during foaling season and in unconscionable heat; the cruelty was continuing.  Everyday, caught on tape and film the dangerous and out of control helicopter pilot uses his aircraft as a weapon instead of a tool and we watch in horror through the lens of WHE and WHFF‘s own Laura Leigh.  Can nothing be done, isn’t that illegal, everyone asks and those who do not take time off from the cause worked on Sunday, not only out on the range but calls were made, meetings were held and plans were laid.  While the BLM contractor continued to operate in an assumed bubble of unaccountability evidence was being collected, sorted and prepared for the new week and maybe a new day for the horses, although Sunday, work was going on.

And today that work continues, perhaps it is not visible and apparent because no one is beating their chest nor is anyone fabricating  and publishing information in an effort appear relevant, no; rock solid, constructive information gathering proceeds and a few more people in D.C. will have a light go on in their heads this Monday the 15th of August 2011.  The work goes on and those who abuse our horses should be afraid, very afraid because the knock on their door is coming and when that doorbell goes off in their dark, dank corner of the universe the resulting actions will turn their morbid little world upside down.

That day is coming and who knows, that day might even be a Sunday.

45 replies »

  1. What gets me is they will deny this is happening. That poor baby!!! How are we going to stop this? Add this to the helicopter hitting the exhausted horse and what else has to happen before they stop. What I ask???? Maybe a load of wild horses going to slaughter and getting catch?? This is just so disgusting I can’t stand it anymore. GRRrrrrrrrr!!!

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  2. Certainly this equine holocaust is depressing, but not hopeless. I know, we care about each and everyone of them, wild and domestic.

    This is an indictment of our current agricultural system as a whole; recalled meat, abused animals (not just equines), contaminated produce, sloppy inspected import food and personal use products.

    Yes, RT…the evidence. The evidence is being collected and will build the tsunami that will eventually bring responsible humane change….just not soon enough for the educated and those abused equines being tortured and dying NOW.

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  3. If you haven’t read the most recent Cloud Foundation post (lower right side, featured on RTs “Blog Roll”….please go.

    Horseback is still following the Presidio disaster and Waco KB stories….mosey on over, read and comment.

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  4. I think this is one of your most heartfelt and authentic posts yet. I love the absense of hyperbole in this piece. Major media worthy. I’m sending to my AP contact.

    What is happening to America’s horses- both wild and domestic, is heartbreaking. It’s hard to continue fighting day after day and having to see so much pain and suffering without being able to affect immediate results. But try we must. Every day- until there are no suffering horses in our country.

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  5. 24/7 for all of us, R.T. That’s the way it’s been from the beginning and that’s the way it will be until this mess is straightenend out, once and for all. There’s no turning back.

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  6. In a society that deems educated and modern, the havoc and cruel ignorant assault against helpless mustangs and burros is difficult to fathom. The ignorance at will coming out of the present administration whose approval rates have sunken to shocking lows (is it a wonder) – is beyond disgusting.
    The Feds seem to be immune to any consequences for crimes they commit, no matter what situation, what area, what topic it concerns. This country is becoming a nation of liars and corruption in office, seems an uprising is long overdue. I pray and hope every day that they get their karma and the atrocities they commit will stop – the value system has long derailed from a path that would reflect a relationship to the beauty of our environment and its gifts and wonders. The ill destruction of our government’s actions call for change that won’t come unless people demand it. More people need to know the treshold of TRUTH. These consciousless klotzes in office have no regrets as long as they can get away. I pray they pay their price.

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  7. The remedy for stopping all the Mustang suffering is simple, If everyone in Government Jobs , in fact did their Job, what is needed is simple common everyday enforcement of rules, laws ,the problem from that standpoint is simple…The BLM is breaking everyone of their own set rules and regulations, therefore, the proper authorities should putting an instantaneous stop to all Unlawful Holocaustic ,NEEDLESS, cruel and inhumane round ups………….. There must be a complete investigation of the BLM>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>instead of the Government cutting other needed employees they can stop the BLM and save a ton of money , and get rid of everyone of the BLM unneeded programs, that have proven to be nothing more then waste of tax money????……………….. to the tune of billions…………………………..The mustangs are proven to be not only essential to our environment but a true American Treasured Asset………. With centuries of credentials, that the BLM could never deny………………..

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  8. Denise, this is what you wanted us to read. August 30 are Comments Due:

    CLOUD FOUNDATION
    In this document issued by the BLM seeking “public input on a proposed 2012 wild horse gather within the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range” the BLM is saying that they will not use helicopters but bait trapping, water trapping and herding to round up and remove the horses. They state that the AML, the Appropriate Management Level of the herd is 90 – 120 horses, and that the current population of the Pryors Herd is 150 adults and 17 foals. Despite all of the research that states that 150 adults is the minimum population necessary to insure genetic viability for a wild horse herd, the BLM wants to reduce the numbers of this herd to 90 or 120 horses. Over time, this will destroy this herd.
    And what about the young horses who will never be able to grow to maturity in their home in the Pryor Mountains? And what about the older horses who will be torn from the only home they have ever known?

    What you can do to help is send your comments in by August 30th.

    The BLM is only allowing mailed or faxed comments for this scoping document – they say that emails overwhelmed their system last time – isn’t that a sign that their system is outdated and that there is overwhelming opposition to their plans for this herd?
    Here is the address:

    Jim Sparks, Field Manager

    Billings BLM Field Office

    5001 Southgate Dr.
    Billings, MT 59101

    Fax: 406-896-5261

    Be sure to include your name and address in the comments and here are some of the points that I would recommend including:

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  9. Thank you RT for your encouraging news. Actually, it could have been written as a “Sunday, positive uplifting article.” I think most of us know that the work is ever ongoing, day and night. A constant. We are all in this together doing what each of us can. However, there are those advocates more in-the-know with multiple contacts that work so hard behind the scenes. It needs to be this way to protect information and the upcoming alert to get-on-it! And we “troops” are here when the time comes for concrete action, in VOLUME. TY, my heart is lighter. My batteries recharged. Ready, Set>>ACTION! 🙂

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  10. Despite my contacts with a wonderful little bunch of advocates I have known now for nearly 2 years and being in touch with Laura Leigh and others who have been out there in the field, I feel very isolated at times. Here on the hillside beneath the San Juan Mountains I try to keep up and attempt to find solutions and discuss the events with some of the old FOLM group (Furious Old Ladies for Mustangs) which was born at this blog maybe in 2009? Yipes!
    All I have I tried and want to do is be a part of a solution, a part of real positive change. We all know how hard that has been.

    When you are optimistic, RT, it helps. I know there is much brewing. Just let it all be for the benefit of the wild ones and the detriment to those who have taken them and altered their world.

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    • Mar, please know that many of us share your feelings – I live in a wide spot in the road/desert community in Arizona. When I got involved in this fight almost 3 years ago I started out with 4 other women and not ONE of them lives in my state (one actually spends 1/2 her year in England!) and we met via phone on a weekly to every 2 week basis to do healing meditation, brain storming, letter/fax/emailing, and sharing whatever information we could gather. I was lucky enough to meet several of them at the protest in Phoenix in March, as well as many others like R.T. and Terry, Simone, Marjorie, and more. To be a part of the COLLECTIVE ENERGY for 2 days was better than sex! (from what I remember…LOL) Now we have so many sources work with (Facebook being a biggie!) as well as newsletters and blogs like this. I no longer feel like I’m pushing a boulder up the hill…by myself. However, I DO KNOW your feeling of isolation at times as there is not one person locally that I can talk to (especially as intense as I am about this situation!) – so I often feel as if I’m living on an intellectual island here! 🙂 However, know that we are LEGION – from sea to shining sea as well as across the pond and many other people who are in support of this cause whether in the country or not. Powerful energy is around us all (and I know we are projecting that out to our horses daily) and the bastions of “our government” are cracking big time…in a variety of areas. The rep and 62 of his collegues signed the last letter to Salazar – some part of our governement officials ARE listening – and I focus on when I’m down – cause that’s how I am – show me a room full of manure and I’m grabbing a shovel shouting “Wow, there’s gotta be a pony in there someplace!” So know that you are not out there with your candle by yourself – there’ s truly an army around you. Blessed Be!

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      • Jade, I have met many people and driven out to find horses in Nevada, Utah and Colorado and gone to the Denver workshop and met Madeleine and SAW Slaughter Sue when she angry. I have been to PVC and Broken Arrow with Elyse and LL. But my experiences have been very different. FB has been a divisive and hostile place so often. Much backfires for those of us trying to raise money for lawsuits and observation. Emotional attacks and misinformation abound. Some groups have been very productive while others have been the breeding grounds of aggressive jealousy with big names, who never visit, but are shielding their motives. Ignorance is rampant and egos maneuver the pages like hunters looking for prey! I kid you not. I am a realist and what I see and hear is often more disturbing than what is happening to our horses and burros.

        There is a dark side. It has prevented fund raising and put doubt in the minds of people who are still learning the ropes. FB is a lawless land where the few rules, being so simplistic, can be used to harass and censor people. Anyone can fall victim to this. I am not talking about the opposition, either. These people call themselves advocates, too. That is why I feel the isolation. Because there are those who want to knock me right out of this old fight I have been in so long! I do not think it is personal as I do not know these people. But they want to have an effect on the people and horses and projects I support. It can be very alienating.

        I should not say more and I shall try not to bring this up again. It is just part of the reality I know. Reality is very sobering. 2010 was the year of optimism and 2011 is the year of realism.

        If you want to remove this, RT, I will understand.

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      • Hi old FOLM buddy!! Yep, you do, but you got Indy to go hug and talk to, that helps a big bunch! Long ago it was the influence of people East of the Mississippi who helped get the FRWH&B Act passed. I was a Yankee then! hugs, mar

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  11. Mar, you ARE part of the solution. Don’t ever forget that old adage:

    AGE AND TREACHERY WILL ALWAYS WIN OUT OVER YOUTH AND ENTHUSIASM
    Only a fool would underestimate a group of Wise and Determined Females

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  12. I think it might help Ginger to hear from all of us. She feels pretty sad right now. Kindred Spirits are always a comfort.

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    • Thanks for reading and posting over at TCF blog…for some reason my post is “awaiting mod..”.

      I thought it important to read her post and then post a condolence. I know this situation disturbed us all (read what the authorities did with the remains) and was very concerned how TCF would respond.

      Ms. Kathrens is one class act and I know every loss, especially because of a drunk driver would affect her and the entire staff at TCF. Such a waste and so painful for every decent human and the band of wild equines looking for closure.

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  13. Thanks for another awesome post that is spot on. You make it all bearable when I want to just jump off a mountain. LOL You are my hero.

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  14. In this day and age, it doesn’t matter where we live. This is an inter-state problem and we can cover all of the states better and faster than ever before. WE ARE EVERYWHERE AT ONCE.

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  15. I have important questions….. I am hoping that someone on here can answer, in regards to the horses seized from the truck on Friday, does anyone know the condition these 44 or 67 horses were in?????? Did anyone actually see them????? and Where are they now ????????? Who or whom s custody are they in???????………………………….<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< The horses at Gunnison does anyone know how many are there??????? and When were they last seen by anyone ???????

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    • We were told they went to the Herriman Facility South of Salt Lake. I asked the other day if people think someone should visit there. I was volunteering. I would like to know who these horses all are. Get pictures and talk to the BLM rep.

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      • Dear Mar, I think there is something very important there with those horses, their condition means a lot, and there is other important things there also…………… I wish I was there I am in Ohio…. But I know there is an important thing to learn with those horses………………….

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  16. Two things, off this blog entry topic:

    (1) President is doing “bus tour” stuff and will probably continue more tours….anyone in the current bus tour area with signs? Want to remind him that he is not protecting wild equines or our food system; and,

    (2) You gotta go read Horseback’s story on the sheriff’s laugh-a-palooza excuse fest about the injuries at Presidio, TX…read it and then let your fingers do the talking.

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  17. R.T. ThaNK YOU FOR YOUR COOL HEAD AND KIND HEART. I am relatively new at this. I have a mustang mare and her daughter and they teach me much. They were rescued from a veterinarian who was starving over 20 head of horses.I love them dearly and often wonder what my dear mare is thinking. It had taken her a long time to trust me and every small step brings tears to my eyes. The rage that sometimes engulfs me over the slaughter and round-up is great. I try to be patient and wait to help where I can. I hope to go to D.C and join the protest and join-up with others who are helping.It is just so overwhelming at times. Thank you for your work and cool head and kind soul.

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  18. These bill must pass into law: S.1176 American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act 2011 and S.1281 Horse Transportation Safety Act 2011. Emailed everyone I know and rescue facilities in 18 states that haven’t cosponsored yet requesting to contact their senators to cosponsor both bills and pass it on. I should be finished emailing to remaining states by the end of this week. Most that cosponsored are in the eastern states. Folks you have to keep on pushing to get these bills passed into law.

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  19. BLM, helicopter pilots, wrangles and any other inhumane beings are not above the law. Why aren’t they arrested and charged with animal cruelty? Anyone call authorities?

    The State of Nevada animal cruelty laws: http://www.animallaw.info/statutes/stusnvst574_010_510.htm#s100.
    Section 1. NRS 574.100 is hereby amended to read as follows:

    <>

    1. A person shall not:
    (a) Overdrive, overload, torture, cruelly beat or unjustifiably injure, maim, mutilate or kill an animal, whether belonging to himself or to another;
    (b) Deprive an animal of necessary sustenance, food or drink, or neglect or refuse to furnish it such sustenance or drink;
    (c) Cause, procure or allow an animal to be overdriven, overloaded, tortured, cruelly beaten, or unjustifiably injured, maimed, mutilated or killed, or to be deprived of necessary food or drink;
    (d) Instigate, engage in, or in any way further an act of cruelty to any animal, or any act tending to produce such cruelty; or

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    • Dear Marianne, This is the Law, why are there no arrests being made !!!!?????? They could fill up a entire Penitentiary with the people who are breaking everyone of these Laws…………………What do we have to do to set these Laws in motion????? Why are there Laws to Protect Our Mustangs and some think they are above it???????????????

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  20. Cloud Foundation
    Pryor Scoping Letter Issued
    BLM Seeks Another Removal in Cloud’s Herd

    August 16, 2011

    Dear Friends of Cloud, his family, and herd;

    The BLM Billings Field Office mailed a Scoping Letter to interested parties on July 28th, stating their intent to reach an “Appropriate” Management Level (AML) of 90-120 adult wild horses, one year of age and older in the Pryor Mountains. If they carry out this plan 45 to as many as 75 horses would be removed in 2012. We cannot allow this to happen.

    Our position is clear—there is absolutely no need for any removals.

    Little Lynx
    It is important that you respond to an action which would threaten the continued existence of the Pryor Wild Horse Herd. Please write a factual letter to the BLM using some of the information provided here. Remember that BLM will not consider your response unless it is clearly your message — no copying of the list supplied here. Please use your own words to communicate your polite outrage at such an unwarranted proposal.

    You will note in our list of recommended response topics, the support of PZP, the one-year infertility drug. This comes as a departure for TCF. However, the remotely delivered drug given at the correct time of year has reduced the foal population and it has given us a good argument to fight for no removals. We still strongly believe in the long-range goal of natural management without helicopters or bait traps or drugs. We see PZP as a means to an end, and that end is a hands off strategy in which Mother Nature calls the shots as much as possible.

    Please read on and create a powerful message on behalf of Cloud, his family and herd. BLM will not allow emails, so send your letters directly to the BLM (see address below). If you can only send an email, send it to us at info@thecloudfoundation.org and we will copy it and mail these emails to the BLM. The reason for BLM opting out of email is that we crashed their server last time. Well, let’s send enough mail to bury them in recycled paper this time around!
    Letters need to be postmarked to the BLM by August 30th.

    Jasper (Flint’s son), Indigo Kid (Electra’s son), & another bachelor, He Who,
    play at the waterhole

    Thanks so much for standing up now to avert a disaster for the herd in 2012.

    Happy Trails!
    Ginger

    P.S. – If you mail your letters directly to BLM, please consider emailing us a copy for our records. Your comments are important to us and, on more than one occasion, we have used an idea from a supporter comment that never occurred to us. We strongly recommend you ask for a return receipt to your letters.

    You can mail your letters to:
    Jim Sparks, Field Manager
    BLM Billings Field Office
    5001 Southgate Drive
    Billings, MT 59101

    You are receiving this email because you have asked to be on our e-mail list. If you have received this e-mail in error, please unsubscribe. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience!

    Unsubscribe arleneorlando@aol.com from this list.

    Our mailing address is:
    The Cloud Foundation 107 South 7th St Colorado Springs, CO 80905

    Our telephone:
    719-633-3842

    Copyright (C) 2008 The Cloud Foundation All rights reserved.

    Forward this email to a friend
    Update your profile

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