Horse News

Actress Bo Derek joins Sen. Mary Landrieu to push for ban on horse slaughter

By Bruce Alpert, Times-Picayune

Big Names Push Against Anti-Horse Agenda

Actress Bo Derek speaks about the importance of passing Sen. Mary Landrieu's American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act, which would prohibit the inhumane killing of American horses for human consumption. Photo by Matthew D. R. Lehner, Office of Sen. Mary Landrieu

Washington – Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., brought some celebrity power to the Capitol Wednesday to build support for her legislation that would prohibit inhumane killing of American horses for food. Actress Bo Derek, best known for the 1979 romantic comedy,”10,” and speaking for the Animal Welfare Institute, pushed for passage of the bill. So did Amy Nelson, singer Willie Nelson’s daughter, and Raelyn Nelson, his granddaughter, saying they were speaking on Nelson’s behalf and his love for horses.

Landrieu’s American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act would also stop the transport of horses across the border to Canada and Mexico for slaughter.

“We must continue to open people’s eyes about this appalling practice that is so often hidden from the public,” Derek said at a news conference, surrounded by Landrieu, other lawmakers and citizen lobbyists.

In November 2011, Congress opted not to renew a ban on funding federal inspectors at horse slaughter plants in the United States and Landrieu and other lawmakers opposed to the practice worry it will spur a return to what they say is brutal treatment of horses.

“There are viable, affordable alternatives to slaughter,” Landrieu said. “When a horse is old, sick, or can no longer be productive, its owner should provide humane euthanasia.

“Ninety percent of all horses that die each year are humanely euthanized and/or safely disposed of – this additional 10 percent is not a burden,” Landrieu said. “Horse owners will buy some of these horses and horse rescue organizations will take others. Brutal slaughter is not an appropriate alternative.”

Amy Nelson and Raelyn Nelson issued a statement on behalf of Willie Nelson “We ride horses in America, we don’t eat them. Slaughter is not humane euthanasia. It is not a responsible end of life option for any horse.”

Also speaking was Lorenzo Borghese from ABC’s “The Bachelor.”

“There may be no more special relationship than the one we have with horses,” Borghese said. “The love and loyalty horses have shown people shows no bounds – they have won wars for us, carried us west and built this great country, and have served as companions for our children and our disabled.”

28 replies »

  1. I am so glad to see “star power” at work on the Hill. Let’s be frank, nothing does it like some highly recognizable names to bring attention to an issue. I applaud Bo and Mary, Amy and Raelyn and Willie for lending their support to this most important animal welfare issue.

    I know that there are people who feel that animal issues should take a back seat when there are so many horrible things going on in the world. I do not agree with that theory and here is why; every person has something that tugs at their heart. We all are against terror,abuse,bullies,war, etc.

    Why do we have to sacrifice one issue for another? There is plenty of heart to go around in this world and we can hope to make life better for animals and people at the same time.


    • Amen greyfel! If only they realized the longer it takes the more lives are lost. There are a lot more stars who have horses and burros. They own ranches all over the country. The Nashville music industry has a lot of horse owners, many of them hands on.

      We need to solicit everyone who’s name will draw a camera and a microphone to help these animals. After all the horses biggest problem isn’t grass…it’s humanity and it’s lack there of


    • When the stars speak people do take notice and listen up. We need more star power helping the horses in need plight for survivial. Let good rein over evil. The good people will protect the horses against the slaughterhouse pipeline.


  2. Woooo Hooo Star power !!!!!!!! We need for the horses lots of star POWER !!!!! I am hoping that Wille Nelson is doing fine, I see that his daughter and grand daughter came in his behalf , what wonderful presents they are knowing Willie Nelson has always loved horses !!!!! I question the integrity of our Political figures who dont stand tall for them, there isnt any other animal in the US who deserves more honor and respect than the HORSE>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> The Horse represents Honor , Trust , pride, nobleness, courage, beauty, service, power , strength love, all the things that America is ……………


  3. YEAH!!!! Finally the BIG PUSH!!!!! Bo took a lot of flack the last time she went in front of Congress but we sure got a lot more co-sponsors. Lets get ‘er done!!!! Save our horses and lets get on to taking care of them.


  4. It is great to see so many stars come forward….thank you Bo, John, and Willie’s granddaugthers. Willie, himself, has rescued around 13 horses…thank you Willie. But, they need to be pushing the fact that horses we have are not ediable due to the medicines we put in their bodies. For example, dewormers…it states right on the box, “do not use on horses intended for human consumption.” There are other medicines we use that makes the meat toxic for us to eat. I think this would help very much for the passing of the Anti-slaughter Prevention Act. It would clearly show that not just the process is cruel and inhumane, it would show that eatting the meat would certainly kill us. No that’s reasons for supporting this bill.


  5. Bo Derek is absolutely awesome!!!! She not only is beautiful, but speaks her heart as well. She did such a great job helping us in Illinois, no words can ever be told to thank her. There are many celebraties who are willing to take up the challenge and are now coming forward. She is very very
    knowledgable on this topic and so well versed. Her ranch was featured on one of the shows and she showed off her beautiful horses. So glad to see her giving us a hand…I think that we are gaining more sponsors and supporters for this bill. As far as I am being told all my Illinois Legislators are all on board and are supporting the passage. We need to hound the Good Ol’ Boy network of Legislators who consistantly support the cattlemen and other livestock owners who see our wild horses as nothing more than pests. And those who only see the horse as a walking piece of meat to be slaughtered. Thank you to all the celebraties who are weighing in on this. Several months back I sent an email to Willie Nelson’s website asking him for help to save the prison horses and support the slaughter bill. As usual, Willie has been true to his word…Thank you again Bo and the Nelson family from all the horse owners, horse lovers and the horses themselves..


  6. AWESOME!! 🙂 This is exactly what our horses & burros need, star power & star clout! Hooray! They just need a lot more of it, combined with all the rest of America’s horse advocates. There are many humane alternatives to slaughter. I know some prisons train inmates to gentle & train wild horses for adoption, why couldn’t they also re-train former racehorses, showhorses, & others no longer wanted or considered “useful” by their owners?? We need to make ALOT more noise!!


  7. Just Brainstorming here….need everyone else’s opinion….How about (with all of the celebs getting involved)..having a national concert to benefit the horses…Just like the one that Willie Nelson did for Farm Aid. We could have speakers such as RT, Ginger Kathrens,, Wayne Pacelle from the HSUS, Jerry Finch from Habitat 4Horses,Bo Derek, Mary Landrieu, and anyone else that we can think of. Terry F. could do a slide show in the background with all of her incredible photos that she has taken of the horses I am not sure if Willie Nelson is in good health, but perhaps his daughter & granddaughter can ask him for help to guide us through this….He has many friends who support the horses…I am thinking maybe Toby Keith, Sheryl Crow, John Mellencamp, John Fogarty, Jon Bon Jovi….just to name a few… This would be such an incredible event to help the innocent ones…Any feedback will much be appreciated. WE CAN DO THIS TO BENEFIT ALL OF OUR BELOVED HORSES!!!! Am I being unrealistic here? Or do you think that this is attainable to help our beloved ones? Please let me know your thoughts on this….
    RT & Terry are my mentors…I value everyone’s opinions on this site…
    Thanks in advance!


      • Thank you, Arlene….I just thought about this today…and thought why not???? It is worth a try..


      • Yikes!! I cannot believe that I neglected to mention one of our most important speakers to have at this event…It would be our star hero…9 yr.old Declan Gregg, who lives in Greenland, NH, where I reside….. He is totally amazing!! (as you well know)….


      • This probably would have been a great idea last year, because it takes so,much planning in advance…Right now the priorities are the horses and the issues at hand…RT has so many things going on right now…..I am hoping that we can move forward to help the innocent ones….we can always keep this idea on the back burner…..


      • Of course, this is a great idea and one we have been batting around since the ’90s. The main problem is that we ALL have to work together and pretty much do so under one organization. Right now, that vehicle should and could be the Equine Welfare Alliance but it would be a Herculean project which would take a professional staff to pull off.

        We, as advocates, are all volunteers and do not earn money from our efforts, instead, we try to pack our efforts and money in-between the seams of earning a real living and everyday life. It is difficult to manage a group of such diversity.

        But on the positive side, we are larger than ever before and the momentum is pushing us forward…keep the idea alive and perhaps a few folks with the resources and tools will jump on board to help pull such a project off.

        Be visible and be vigilant!


    • Kathy, This sounds like a GREAT idea!! 🙂 Concert performed by guest musicians, maybe some guest movie stars that support horses as well, as special speakers & fund raisers! Any money raised could be used as needed to help the horses, educate the public, build equine shelters/sanctuaries, or to help existing sanctuaries expand?? The possibilities are endless.


  8. Thank you Nina and Arlene for responding! I guess that the most important contact would be Willie Nelson or his daughter & granddaughter…As I previously mentioned, I am not sure if he is in good health or what is going on…Since he organized Farm Aid, he would be invaluable to guide us through this….(he has so many contacts re: bands etc and is so well respected)…The great thing about having a concert is that more people will attend, so more money will be pulled in for the horses re: legal costs (our lobbyists) to fight for their rights.. Many of the bands will expect to be paid, but usually donate a large portion of the proceeds to the cause…(tax deductible for them)
    Of course, it always takes a large sum of money up front to arrange things (to hire a marketing manager & concert promoter)…
    This is way beyond my scope…. The only person that I know of who has large sums of money would be Madeline Pickens… It would be detrimental that whoever contacts Willie Nelson or Madeline Pickens, must be someone whose name is out there, (important to the cause)…
    One thing at a time, so that it not not seem overwhelming….Sad to say, but I am sure that our innocent ones will still need our help in the years to come… Long term planning for a national event for the horses….NOT IMPOSSIBLE!! Let me know your thoughts when you get a chance.


    • Kathy, I really like the concert idea. I agree we could really use the expertise of Willie Nelson and his family to get such a thing organized. What if we held the concert to his home state or home town for that matter, maybe that would make it easier on him and his family to be involved? I live in Oklahoma and would be willing to do whatever I can to see this concert become a reality. This would be an excellent way to get attention to the cause and bring in much needed money for legal costs for any lawsuit.


  9. Kathy, I think your idea of a large concert to promote the cause would be wonderful. It would be a huge undertaking, but perhaps you could tap into all of the wonderful people who love horses and also have the talent to draw attention to the cause and the concert.

    I have another idea that was brought up by someone else in the past, is there any way that a group could find an attorney that would help to bring a suit against the BLM and their contractors for the abuse of the wild horses and burros? What about the fact that the BLM is not doing what they should be doing as far as the management of those horses and burros.

    I would imagine that somewhere there is a lawyer that would be willing to work pro bono and help this cause.

    Please come on here and give ideas, would the lawyer need to be located in Washington D.C.? Or would he or she need to be in the state where the roundup occurred? I don’t know but I would like to find out.

    I googled animal rights lawyers and got a few in each state but have not tried to contact any yet. Most of their websites concentrate on other things and don’t really say much about the animal rights part. I think a lot ot them only have represented people who have a liability from their dog biting someone or something like that.

    What do you think? Ideas please. Thanks

    Kathryn Baker


  10. Lawsuits are within realm, they take a long time to consumate, we need immediate help, If we can contact Stars , there are so many who are horse people, i think many would join in for the horses ,we need a organizer…..I am also sure many here are organizers, anyone ?????


    • Just an idea, but Ted Turner might be someone good to try and get involved? Know he is a big horse lover and heaven knows he has the money!


  11. I think the concert is a great idea.

    I put forth the lawsuit idea because the powers that be do not respond to concerts very often. I am trying to think of a way to light a fire under them.

    We already post all of these opinions, of which they are aware. We call, we email, we nag. BUT when a congressman sees legal action taking place, it gets their attention.

    Even if it takes a long while, as I am sure it will, the BLM is using that very tactic when they say they must have two years to “evaluate” Madeleine Picken’s offer.

    People have been dragging Ringling Bros. Circus into court for a long,long time. The results have been lukewarm at best. However, every time they have to defend themselves, more of the truth comes out. It does make a difference. Believe me, I would be much more motivated by a lawsuit against me than if someone gave a concert.

    The concert will be supported by, and noticed by the people who already support the cause. You won’t see any of the pro slaughter people there. You won’t see any of the congressmen who don’t keep this issue moving there. They will be at home, ignoring the whole thing.

    Not to say it wouldn’t do good things for the cause. The fact that enough people care to put it together and attend would get some attention.

    I just believe that the problem must be attacked in more than one way.


  12. Heads up everyone !!!!!!!

    Wild Horses & Renegades
    Announces National Airing

    Wild Horses & Renegades will premier on July, 1st, on the Documentary Channel at 8 pm. Eastern time with a repeat airing at 11pm. (Eastern time) for the West coast 8 pm prime time! It’s encore screening will be Friday July 13th at 8pm (eastern time) with a 11 AM repeat.


  13. I think that the celebrity names lend credence, but they need to be posted everywhere, and actually get to the Congressional Delegates.. That is why I believe that getting those involved directly with Mary Landrieu is very positive.


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