Horse News

Pro-Horse/Anti-Slaughter Super PACs Popping Up Like Petunias

By ANNA PALMER & DAVE LEVINTHAL of the Politico Influence.com

“Let the Horse-Eaters Beware!”

NO HORSING AROUND: Seven super PACs opposing horse slaughter popped up over the weekend, including the American Horse Association, Oklahoma Horse Association, Texas Horse Association, Missouri Horse Association, New Mexico Horse Association, Arizona Horse Association and Alabama Horse Association. All are registered in Kaufman, Texas, with Julie Caramante, who’s lent her name to numerous horse rights and anti-horse slaughter organizations, listed as treasurer for each.

Consultant Jon Ryan Parker, who’s working with the groups, tells PI the “main goal of the groups is issue advocacy — they just want to get the message out to the public.” Why form super PACs? “It gives them another tool in their efforts,” said Parker, adding the groups will begin fundraising later this month.

43 replies »

  1. Hey, YOU — Julie! Good for YOU!!! The horses must be thanking their lucky stars to be backed by these super PACS. May one mushroom in every state of the union.

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  2. Yeah!

    I’d get rid of that “horse’s rights” thingy, though. I thought it was about welfare advocacy and shutting down slaughter, enforcing laws and regs already on the books.

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    • I agree, Denise. So many people go into apoplexy whenever they see the word “rights” connected with animals in ANY way. We will have a lot more support and a lot less gnashing of teeth if we stick to welfare. I think that’s what most of us are about anyway.

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  3. This is good. The headline to the story just as a headline has real strength, R.T. I want to suggest a direction here – early – at the local, state, and national level, become credible holders of CANDIDATE ENDORSEMENTS. Create TOWN HALLS and other FORUMS where candidates are invited, are asked about, and can give their views on equine issues.

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  4. This IS great, but I hope these PACs will immediately go after the BLM because our wild horses & burros are in IMMINENT danger right now. If left unchecked, the BLM will very shortly destroy every one of our wild horses & burros.

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  5. First of all, this is the most exciting and heart lifting news I’ve heard this week! What a great way to start the day. GO JULIE!!!! and RT!!! BUT, why does Denise always have to be SUCH a damn downer?!? Is she just a pro horse slaughter troll? She NEVER has anything positive to say, always just trying to slam whatever good news we have. She should stay on UH page and leave us alone. But I won’t let her words bring ME down one bit!! I’m doin’ a happy dance today!

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    • As I posted in reply to Denise – this is a serious problem, don’t think it isn’t. This is why we can’t get anti-horse slaughter legislation passed. Wallis and her incessant wail that we are all “animal rights activists” who want to end ALL livestock agriculture with the banning of horse slaughter being the first step down the “slippery slope.” Personally, I don’t know how anyone with a lick of sense can buy this, but they do, and they spend millions lobbying against us.

      We really DO need to separate ourselves from the radicals, and make it plain we are “horse advocates.’ Period. Of course, most of us are concerned about the welfare of other animals as well, but in this context, we’re better off sticking to horse welfare.

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  6. This is great news! I think Denise has become sensitized to the political rhetoric seized by those who do not understand what the term “animal rights” really means. In her book Animals Make Us Human author Temple Grandin uses the word Animal Needs—She discusses species by species the uniques needs each species has to optimize their potential for “happiness.”

    While I as someone who agrees that animals should live in circumstances that meet their needs, the misuse of the word “rights” by those who believe that animals are just things or commodities cannot seem to process that animal rights does not mean giving animals the same rights that humans have like being able to vote. PETA sued Sea World last year on the basis the an Orca had had his animal rights violated by being held in captivity. While some of us might agree or disagree, there is a difference in an organization suing on behalf of a particular animal’s welfare needs and an organization backing an animal suing his or her employer in terms of whether our society has yet evolved to the point where one may make sense nut not the other.

    The idea that animals have rights just makes people who make their living in animal agriculture and animal entertainment completely crazy. And then they try to make everyone involved in animal welfare sound like we are radical and extreme.

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    • Dr. Temple Grandin life’s work is nothing short of paradox. She claims to love animals so much and even states there is a moral basis to avoid animal exploitation. Then she goes about describing in chilling detail of how to create curved ramps so animals walk to their “humane” slaughter, how to stun them so they have grand mal seizures before their throats are slit. This happens very rarely in the sped up process, and 95% of chickens aren’t stunned. Dr. Grandin is a poster child of the meat industry. So what’s wrong with nonviolence in this world that includes animals? Why are people considered quirky, radical and extreme they view animals having rights not to suffer?

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    • Well, PETA is on record as believing that owning an animal is equal to human enslavement. Their ultimate goal is the extinction of domestic animals, and humans and animals staying away from each other forever after. Pretty radical.

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  7. As a philosopher, the confusion over what constitutes animal rights vs animal welfare makes me a bit crazy. First, PETA is not really an animal rights organization because they are grounded in utilitarian ethics “greatest good for greatest number” . Utilitarian ethics cannot supports rights theory. Rights are grounded in deontological ethics. The difference in relation to horse slaughter is that it is wrong because it is cruel and does not result in “greatest good for greatest number.” Personhood which in ethics is a term for a member of moral community for a utilitarian is defined as a sentient being therefore non-human animals are part of moral community and their interests must be taken into account. This is why PETA defends slaughter and does not endorse TNR for cats because they buy into the crap that slaughter is better than starving etc. This also explains how they believe that they can justify their 97% kill rate at their Virginia shelter that statistic is available from Virginia Dept of Ag. PETA is grounded in Peter Singer”s ANIMAL LIBERATION (utilitarian philosopher). Animal rights on the other hand are grounded in deontological ethics and the philosophers like Regan argue that all non-human animals have intrinsic value and the right to have their basic needs met. Horses have a right not to be slaughter regardless of the consequences of slaughter so even if it was somehow made humane it is still wrong from a rights perspective. Yes the meat people do not like animal rights because a true commitment to animal rights requires that we do not eat them while animal welfare requires that we raise them humanely. I do resent being called a whacko. The arguments for animal rights are comparable to the arguments for human rights. For all of you who think we are whackos I would ask you to identify a morally significant characteristic that ALL humans share and non-human animals do not and it cannot obviously be a soul because its existence can neither be proved or disproved. Whether you support animal welfare or animal rights or just love horses I think that we can all agree from a variety of ethical perspectives horse slaughter is morally wrong. So independent of Denise’s negative attitude this is good news for horses aand all those who advocate for them regardless of their ethical framework.

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    • faith:

      What part of “Yeah !” (PACs being created…good thing) and the use of the term “horse rights” (dangerous terminology) by 2 very uniformed journalists do you and the other 2 people that don’t like my post NOT understand?

      The term “rights” with regard to animals is a hotly contested term in this battle called HCHS and wild equine welfare. The opposing forces, particularly big Ag and their lobbyists jump on that terminology to say we want to end all animal agriculture.

      I’m realistic and know what the advocacy community is battling here.

      I’d hardly call that having a negative attitude.

      p.s. You might want to cut back on the philosophy lessons…you won’t get past your Congressman/woman’s or Senators’ front desk with that kind of approach. Just curious, how’s it working for ya’? Equines in America, or dogs and cats for that matter might fair better without PeTA….but this is America and every one is allowed to speak their mind.

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      • My approach is working very well here. My representatives are more than willing to listen. They oppose slaughter. As for PETA PLEASE RE-READ my statement. I do not support them because they are pro-slaughter and anti TNRC. Again they are not truly an animal rights organization but animal welfare.They I believe have done more harm than good because of their use of emotivism rather than reason. I will continue with my approach because as history clearly shows change comes first from a change in ideas. However, a change in ideas comes only after one has an understanding of the concepts involved. Lack of understanding is of course what Big Ag utilizes to spread their propoganda. Wallis is a master at misinformation and clearly lacks an understanding of ethical/political theory.. Read her propaganda about why Aristotlean ethics supports slaughter or her interpretation of Smith’s Wealth of Nation and capitalism. They put that out there to garner support. I ask you how does one counter that sort of propaganda without as you call it a philosophy lesson. You are quite correct we all have a right to our own approach and the right to express it thanks to the enlightenment thinkers.

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      • Madame…you are on a different planet, respectfully.

        The killers twist the Bible…what’s your point?

        I don’t believe in animal “rights” (as in Constitutional Human Rights) because that infers complete mastery of will and choice; no will, no rights. I do however believe in love, kindness, respect, etc for all things living or nonliving (dirt, rocks, property like homes, etc) whether they, it have will. And no, I don’t want to get into a debate about nature, nurture, survival instinct.

        I also don’t need a tutorial on Wallis and HCHS proponents. I was told (with some ignorant rejoicing and the use of extreme vocabulary like NEVER, ALWAYS) I was a downer…yet you piddle with “rights” to the point of tedium that completely serves no purpose with the legislators and humans we are precisely trying either “change” or run over (new laws) .

        I will not get in another philosophical debate save to say this, many, many PEOPLE fought and died for “change”….not just the “thinkers” I hardly need a history refresher from you.

        Glad your reps “communicate” openly, freely and supportively with you…go have some phone time with Rep King of Iowa, Senator Hutchins and Cronyn of Texas (with other killers) and please report back on your progress.

        p.s. You counter that propaganda by using facts and very carefully chosen words…. “horse rights” are not the words.

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      • Faith ~ PETA is the quintessential Animal Rights group. If you don’t even know THAT, you are sadly misinformed. PETA has stated, as I posted, that owning animals is equal to enslaving humans and also that animals are better off dead than owned. Their ultimate goal – as I posted – is the extinction of all domestic animals and for humans and animals not to interact after that. Now, if you want quotes from Peter Singer and Ingrid Newkirk, I’ll be more than happy to supply them.

        Singer has said that PETA is in fact, opposed to animal “welfare” because they are against anything that makes it appear that humans and animals can co-exist without cruelty to the
        animals. Singer doesn’t love animals, and says as much. This is purely a philosophical argument to him.

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    • Thanks for delineating the difference between animal rights and animal welfare. Big Ag comes up with all kinds of scenarios to throw at equine advocates. They blame the horse for everything under the sun, because they cannot profit from them.

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  8. Wonderful job here!!! Kudos for our groups finally trying to make an impact. We should all take a lesson from these great people and associations and form our own pacs. Dr. Gandin is no fan of the animals..especially our lovely equines.. I totally agree with Faith and the others. I object to being called a whacko for standing up for animals rights. Shame on the others who consume them
    and care nothing about their welfare and care before they give their lives to them. I hope that the tide is finally turning. However, we still need to hold all the Politicians feet to the fire including President Obama to make sure we finally get some legislation in Washington. If the EU is serious about their requirements those that have made their living in horse slaughter maybe out of jobs.

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    • We basically agree and this is not to split hairs, but there is no animal that “gives” his/her life to us. They struggle to the bitter end. There are no dancing chickens, laughing cows and every other character advertisers come up with. Don’t you just cheer when a young cow jumps a five foot five fence around a slaughter house, outruns authority, and only a number of hours finally comes to a stop?

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  9. Keep in mind that Mrs. Romney is a horse person and this lady would certainly be of great benefit if she were to speak at one of the super PAC gatherings. It would probably put her husband in the White House hands down. Can you imagine the horse people in this country voting for Romney? I think he would sign a executive order as soon as he got in the White House banning horse slaughter. Obama is a lost cause he never had any interest in horses and never will.

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    • That’s precisely what I’ve been thinking about lately…we have to get Ann Romney on board! Does she even know about the wild mustangs’ plight? I think we need to write to the campaign and get the Romney people to speak out for the horses and how Obama and the BLM are breaking the law with their roundups!!

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  10. This issue with welfare vs. rights is when you use “rights” you are immediately associated with PETA and that’s the last thing we need. Right or wrong, animal rights is always associated with “radicals” and the horse haters make sure of that so we play right into their hands. Animals will never have rights other than to be treated humanely and that’s advocating for animal welfare, not rights.

    Unfortunately, everything we say is under a microscope. Every statement must be verified and documented vs. the horse haters that pull numbers out of thin air and make statement after statement with absolutely no basis to back the statements. They are pushing the slippery slope and everything we do moving toward ending animal agriculture which we all know couldn’t be further from the truth.

    We shouldn’t have to be careful about choosing our words but perception is important. Why give them ammunition?

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    • I understand the reasoning why the word animal rights is not used. I understand they do call PETA and animal rights people radicals. But does using the word welfare stop them from passing ag gag laws or stop them from calling anyone radical or stop Sue Wallis? No. They already have all the ammunition they need. Just ask the Humane Society, probably one of the most respected animal welfare organizations in the world who have to fight against their powerful propaganda campaign funded by big business. When you speak truth to power, the focus is on the truth, not on how to trick or appease the power, for the truth is the only thing you have. Why do we want animals to be treated humanely? Because they have the right to live without pain unnecessarily inflicted by man. Can you imagine if the Civil Rights movement was instead the Civil Welfare Movement and that we should just treat them a little nicer if we felt like it, not because they had inherent rights? Or how people say recognizing the rights of women (or gay marriage) will ruin the family and our way of life? It is the same thing when they say animal advocates want to end agriculture as we know it or no one will be able to have a pet anymore. It is trying to reason with the unreasonable. They always say this extreme stuff to uphold and justify the status quo. Until society views animals with inherent rights, their welfare will always be an uphill battle. And there aren’t any labels or words they are going to agree with ever. We are not trying to change their views. We are trying to change the views of the reasonable. Civil rights workers in the deep South knew they would never change the views of the bigots in power, they just held strong to the truth and that in time they would prevail upon the minds of the reasonable and just. Just my opinion. You have far more experience in this than I, which I respect.

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  11. I believe gay people focused on “rights” quite a bit, savewildhorses. And I am NOT an animal “rights” person either. Animals have no concept of “responsibility,” therefore that cannot grasp the condition that with rights must come responsibility. The animal rights agenda is indeed to have a pet-less society, with no personal contact whatsoever.between humans and animals. This is NOT my agenda and never will be. I was reading a blog just the other day where they were discussing how the entire concept of “domesticating” animals was wrong and they – domestic animals that is – need to be allowed to die out, and then people and animals stay away from each other.

    I have no desire to live in a pet-less world. I can only speak for myself. But, it is my personal belief that this is not about animal “rights” but about human responsibility – a concept that has gone out of favor with humans themselves. Animals are blameless because they really can’t understand the connection between “rights” and “responsibility.” Humans on the other hand, are NOT blameless, and I think we should remind them of this constantly. Without the exercise of responsibility, rights are lost as well – happens every time.

    That’s the end of MY philosophizing. Don’t make me post the words of Singer or Newkirk because they gag me.

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    • savewildhorses ~ This is it for me, but we do not want to be associated with PETA. At least I don’t, and for a lot of reasons. I don’t want anyone to think I’m in this for animals rights because I am NOT, for the above mentioned reasons.

      I don’t know which humane society you are talking about, but if it’s the HSUS, they are indeed an animal rights organization – not as radical as PETA, SHARK or ANIMAL NATIONS because they don’t believe in FORCING their agenda on others, but they are for “rights,” rather than “welfare.”

      As for comparing animals to low IQ humans or babies, I would think YOU of all people would see the fallacy of such a comparison. An IQ of 50 is an abnormality and doesn’t apply to humans in general. And a baby will grow up to understand what rights and responsibility is all about. Animals will not. That’s why WE must be responsible for them. Stewardship NOT domination.

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    • But rights do not come with a do list, that is why they are called rights, not responsibilities. What responsibilities are you talking about? And that baby has the same exact rights upon its birth as an adult has. So does the person with a low IQ. They don’t need to fulfill any responsibilities at all to have these rights. They are inalienable. And the Humane Society is way more animal welfare than animal rights. I think you are misreading my posts.

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  12. I’m not going to expound on this any longer.

    My point is that the killers utilize the word “rights” as a block on any welfare improvement or the end of HCHS.

    Vicki stated something similar; Suzanne Moore also added to the discussion.

    If you think this is about animal “rights”, carry on and good luck. Go explain it to your local, state and Federal officials and see how far it goes. I wish you the best, seriously. Let us know of your progress.

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  13. Posted by Wallis today. Boy, isn’t the first sentence a gem – LOL?

    “At least the ones that got gathered and took a short ride to an instantaneous death in a processing plant where they were turned into good meat that somebody wants were spared the awful, and horrific months of painful starvation and thirst before they died. That sorry fate is a direct result of the bleeding heart animal rights radicals. Let’s put the blame where it belongs!”

    Have you ever seen “radical animal welfare advocates” used? We aren’tasking for animal rights. We are asking that horse slaughter end. It should end because our horses are not raised as food animals and because horse slaughter has never been and never will be a humane death for a horse.

    That’s about the rights of consumers and the welfare of horses.

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  14. IWe really all dont have to agree on every little detail, but we do all have to realize that if you spend any amount of time or energy on arguing with the ones on the same side of your playing field, that you are helping the ones on the other side of the playing field win.

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  15. This is true – all of us have to pull together in order to ever make any headway for the horses.
    If these pro slaughter morons can separate the various organizations & groups of people who are against slaughter – they will win. None of us want that.

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