President Obama and the horse mask person: An investigation involving data and charts

of the Washington Post

Tongue-in-cheek mid-week break from the norm

Prez and Horseman

President Obama was in Denver on Tuesday and met a person wearing a horse head mask. This is obviously a pivotal moment for the country and the world, but with such an occasion comes a bevy of questions: What does it all mean? From whence did the horse mask person come? How often does such a thing occur?

As with anything, these thorny issues cannot be resolved with words alone. We must give ourselves over to the comfort of data and numbers, knowing that only through these avenues can we find salvation and providence.

So, onto the charts.

First, we tried to break down the historic nature of this meeting. How often have U.S. presidents met people wearing horse head masks? We looked back at the data from the late 18th century through the present day. This is what we found:

horse mask graph

Okay, so that tells us about how often this happened throughout the history of this country having presidents. But what if we want to look at this from the perspective of how many people have held that office? This infographic gives us a better idea of how rare it is for a U.S. president to meet a person in a horse head mask…(CONTINUED)


Guest Editorial by Vicki Tobin, Vice President of The Equine Welfare Alliance

EWA Exec Speaks out on Anti-Horse Activists

The slaughter proponent’s arguments bring to mind the old Abbott and Costello routine because you never really know what they are saying. They talk back and forth to each other with neither, understanding the other or making sense.

Each new year brings new arguments and scare tactics from our opponents. When each talking point is disproved, they move on to the next. Every once in a while, they throw a curve ball and resurrect an old argument thinking it just might stick this time around.

We, on the other hand, have been consistent in our message. Humanely euthanize your horse. End your horse’s life by humane euthanasia as we do with all non-food animals in the United States. It is the preferred method by all major veterinarian associations. Any competent veterinarian will tell you that. Veterinarians don’t carry captive bolts in their medical bags or advise their clients to send their horses to slaughter. Veterinarians for Equine Welfare has an excellent updated white paper on this subject.

Dr. Lester Friedlander, DVM & former Chief USDA Inspector stated, “The captive bolt is not a proper instrument for the slaughter of equids, these animals regain consciousness 30 seconds after being struck, they are fully aware they are being vivisected.”

When the slaughter debate started heating up in the late 2000s, the argument of choice was; what are we going to do with old, lame, sick horses? Jeez, any responsible horse owner knows the answer to that. Pick up the phone and call the vet.

Next was the argument that horses are livestock. While many categorize horses as livestock, that’s not the issue. The issue is that of a food animal vs. a non-food animal. US horses are not raised as food animals but for other purposes. Mounted police are not riding food animals. Therapy horses are not food animals. Race horses are not food animals. The country does not use food animals in military and presidential funerals. Have you ever seen a riderless cow? Dressage, cutting and reining horses are not food animals. Livestock (food animals) do not perform any of the functions that horses perform in our society.

US horses must have maintenance medications that are prohibited in food animals to keep them at peak performance and healthy. There is no tracking of horses as there is with livestock. Unlike horses, you can trace livestock back to the original farm. It is obvious by the opposition to NAIS last year that owners don’t want horses tracked.

This brings me to the “abandoned” horses. If you can’t find the owners to charge them for the crime they have committed, how are you going to certify the horses are free of prohibited substances? A horse that has received a prohibited substance can never enter the food chain. There is no withdrawal period. Those are the EU rules and the FDA rules.

We have been warning of the drug issue for years. We were made the brunt of many a joke and constantly laughed at. We were so ridiculously funny, the EU took notice. It is important to note that all current anti-horse propaganda never addresses the drug issue.

There have been many scare tactics such as the AQHA release in 2008 warning owners that if the federal legislation passes they won’t be able to transport their horse across the street. Senator Landrieu promptly responded with a release stating the intent of the law and we never again saw that argument.

One of the most often used arguments is property rights. Nobody can tell slaughter proponents what they can or cannot do with their property. This is one of the more laughable arguments since there are many laws on the books telling property owners exactly how to dispose of property such as appliances, batteries, toxic substances, cars, etc. There are even laws in certain areas on horse disposal. Owning property does not give the owner the right to abuse the property, especially when the “property” is a living, sentient being.

Now we are hearing how inhumane slaughter is in Mexico and Canada. Slaughter proponents conveniently forget that they never uttered a peep when thousands of horses were sent over the borders when the US plants were open. Why was it okay then but not now? They never mention the inhumane slaughter that took place in the US and dismiss government FOIAs. The truth is that no matter where horses are slaughtered it will never be humane.

They complain of the long distances in travel now but didn’t have any concerns when horses were being trucked across the US to slaughter plants and also to plants in Mexico, Canada and Japan. All documented humane violations in shipping have taken place within US borders and yet, they oppose the slightest change to improve conditions such as a ban on double deckers. It is quite obvious; they have no concern for horse welfare, only lining their pockets. There were years and years of investigations and FOIAs of the domestic plants and never was an attempt made to correct anything.

The latest comments we are seeing is that they will start raising horses for slaughter. I’m not sure what type of business model will survive paying thousands on feed for pasture ornaments to bring in revenue of $300-$600 per horse from a kill buyer.

This is yet another shining example of their refusal to address the issue of excess horses. Instead of addressing the mess they have created, they’re going to start a new population of horses. Slaughter at all costs! One only needs to follow the rules of engagement to be a diehard anti-horse person.

Rule #1: Never admit responsibility for producing the excess horses going to slaughter.

Rule #2: Call horses “unwanted” so you can blame the horse. Call slaughter harvesting or processing so that it is more palatable.

Rule #3: Never take responsibility for horses you choose to buy or breed and transfer all blame to the “radical vegan tree huggers” that oppose slaughter.

Rule #4: Blame the rescues.

Rule #5: Blame the legislators.

Rule #6: Exploit Native Americans for the few that have chosen to go against their teachings and spiritual beliefs that revere and respect the horse.

Rule #7: Blame anyone that dares to speak up publicly for the horses, make sure you publish a list of these terrible people and call for a boycott. Even include celebrities that have raised millions of dollars for farmers. All people that want horses treated humanely must be exposed. Wait a minute. Doesn’t that sound like the organization that they so vehemently oppose? They blast them but when they do the same, it’s okay.

Rule #8: Be sure to present all propaganda to legislators with nothing to back the statements but emphasize it as fact.

Rule #9: Create bogus polls and surveys that slant questions and circulate only to those sharing your view. Then, present the results to Congress as the view of horse owners across the country.

Rule #10: State that all rescues are full and become combative when asked for the data to back the claims.

Rule #11: Ignore that slaughter is still very much available and blame all horse woes on the closure of the plants. To fully utilize this rule, under no circumstance, mention or blame the economy. The impact of the economy does not play a role in the horse industry. That is the only industry in America that would not have been impacted by the economy if the slaughter plants had remained opened.

Rule #12: Ignore the horrific investigations and FOIAs and always state that slaughter is a good thing. After all, it allows irresponsible breeders to breed and dump so they can breed more. It allows owners that are abusing and neglecting their horses to hide their crimes by having the horse slaughtered. Then, chuckle and whisper under your breath, America’s Dirty Little Secret.

Rule #13: Never discuss present society and culture. Always refer to 70 or more years ago when some people were forced to eat horse meat but make it sound like present day and thus, you may be able to create a false market in the US.

Rule #14: Always state, with emotion, that slaughter opponents are trying to change other country’s cultures. With even more emotion, state that the horse meat is feeding the hungry in foreign countries even though the hungry cannot afford the gourmet priced horse meat.

Rule#15: Never mention the largest case of neglect in the US occurred in 2005 when all three plants were operating.

Rule #16: Ignore all studies and data on abuse and neglect.

Rule #17: Be sure to always interject the slippery slope. It is your greatest weapon to scare farmers and ranchers into believing that ending the slaughter of a non-food animal will bring down livestock slaughter.

Rule #18: Never mention that slaughter is a predatory, demand driven business and especially don’t mention that US plants imported horses to fill the demand when demand increased.  In years when the demand was down and fewer horses were slaughtered, just state that there were fewer “unwanted” horses in those years. Don’t ever admit that slaughter houses only slaughter the number of horses needed to fill the demand. Let everyone think they are performing a service to rid the US of “unwanted” horses.

Rule #19: Lobby against any legislation for animal welfare, even if it’s something you feel you should support. At all costs, even good legislation from any animal “rights” organization for the humane treatment of any animal must be prevented.

and the two most important rules…

Rule #20: Never directly answer a question, especially when facts are requested. Doubletalk and then change the subject. It is imperative this rule be invoked when asked to discuss the drug issue and how unsafe US horses are for human consumption.

Rule #21: Learn the art of spinning. Always accuse the pro-horse advocates of being emotional, attack their credibility and spin the facts. This is especially important when indisputable facts are provided. When footage or photos are provided, be sure to state with authority they are fake or have been altered. Always state that because they are against slaughter that they are responsible for the horses suffering.

Slaughter proponents don’t stop at domestic horses. They must target all horses, including our wild horses. Perhaps they haven’t read the EU regulations that state that the only wild equidae meat that will be accepted is zebra meat – or did they?

Rule #1: Ignore mitochondrial DNA studies and start calling all wild horses and burros feral so they can be shipped to slaughter.

Rule #2: Be sure to send and publish propaganda on how the wild horses and burros are overpopulated and ruining the ranges.

Rule #3: Never, never mention the millions of privately owned livestock that have turned our public lands into a giant feedlot.

Rule #4: Never mention the hundreds of millions of dollars the taxpayers shell out for the private livestock grazing on public lands.

Rule #5: Dismiss and never mention the GAO studies that prove the livestock, not the horses, are ruining the ranges.

Rule #6: Never mention the pictures of the horses that died of thirst laying alongside the fences that cattle ranchers erected to block the wild horses from using the water sources.

Rule #7: Ignore all footage and photos of the healthy, thriving horses being removed from public lands. At all times, state the horses are starving and removing them is for their own good.

Rule #8: Provide your own wild horse and burro population counts. Make up a staggering number and state with authority and conviction the data source is Google Earth and begin circulating and publishing the number as fact in all communications.

The best argument, by far, is that because of the “ban” on horse slaughter, horses are being starved, neglected and abandoned. This is quite amusing since there is nothing stopping anyone from sending their horse to slaughter. 2008 saw the second highest slaughter count since 1995. Shouldn’t they wait until slaughter isn’t available to make such a statement? In one swooping statement, they disprove their own argument and prove our point that slaughter does not prevent suffering.

Why are owners allowing their horses to suffer instead of sending them to the killers? Did it ever occur to the slaughter proponents that owners are holding on to their horses because they fear the horse may end up on a slaughter truck if they sell or donate the horse?

The bottom line is that slaughter proponents don’t have a platform. They have no facts or data to back their statements and as a consequence, they continually have to invent new arguments and scare tactics.

It is time to call the ball game. Call your legislators to stop this insanity and ask that they pass the legislation to protect our horses. Pick up the phone and do it now.

Bookmark and Share

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

EWA Chair Calls BLM Handling of DC Protestors Heavy Handed

by John Holland, EWA President – Reprint from “Horseback Magazine

EWA President John Holland - Photo by Terry Fitch

WASHINGTON, (EWA) – The demonstration was great, but you really got the feeling of being in a dictatorship! Much of this might be because of the recent anti-health care bill demonstrations and threats, but I have not felt this atmosphere since the 60s.

A guy came around us, climbed the stairs and stood at the top with the armed guards and used a zoom lens to take photos of all of us individually. Funny thing was that one of the guards thought he was with us and tried to throw him off the steps because we were not allowed to touch a single step. Another of the other guards stopped the first guard. It just shows what a stupid bunch we are dealing with. I just couldn’t help thinking about the Keystone Cops.

I especially loved it when they called out the mounted patrol on us. Many of us immediately migrated toward them. One of the horses was a huge gray that did not have a body shape we could identify. I asked his mount what breed it was and he ignored me. Only their leader would talk and he was less than hospitable. I was so tempted to say “I have been around horses all my life and never seen one before that had two anal sphincters” but discretion got the better of me.

I told him that if they were looking to intimidate us, they picked the wrong crowd! I said I face three times that many horses every morning for their feed. He said “We are not here to intimidate you.” So I figured that meant they must be have been there to do something more physical.

I used to marvel that I was able to roam the halls of Congress as freely as I was, but that is changing. It is get darker and more brooding every time I go. Reuters and AP were both there, so we should see more!

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Horse Trainer Ken McNabb in Bed with the BLM

Commentary and eye witness report by R.T. Fitch

RFD-TV’s Ken McNabb endorses BLM’s Cruel and Deadly Mismanagement of U.S. Wild Horses

Emmy Award Winner Ginger Kathrens confronted by BLM advocate McNabb and crew - Photo by R.T. Fitch

During the Pryor Mountain Round-up, last September, Emmy award winning cinematographer Ginger Kathrens was held in a designated “protest area”  and required to have “security” escort herself and a small group of professional photographers, writers and authors about the Britton Springs, BLM holding facility while cattleman and purported horse trainer Ken McNabb and his family were granted free and unfettered access to the entire property.  Mr. McNabb’s children had free rein to run and play anywhere they wanted while the unbiased professionals were held under close watch and moved only when they could be escorted by security on the publicly owned BLM  property.  Is this not a contradiction of terms, morals and clear acts of discrimination?  We think so.

Mr. McNabb confronted Ginger Kathrens, volunteer Executive Director of the Cloud Foundation, on the morning of September 3rd after the attempt to procure a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) to delay the unwarranted round-up of the Pryor Mountain wild horses had failed.  McNabb sauntered down to the gate, from the BLM facility offices, with a microphone on his lapel and a film crew in tow.  He clearly had rehearsed his attack on Ms. Kathrens and was unrelenting in stressing the “cattlemen’s” point of view.  It was a staged assault and came off as a weak and shallow publicity stunt to all present, including attending major network correspondents (of whom gave him no notice or coverage).

His unwavering support of the BLM’s attack on the wild horses granted he and his family unlimited access to all areas of the facility while educated, forward thinking, tax paying professionals were treated like sub-humans by the BLM’s Operations “Commander” Jim Sparks.

Billings BLM Field Agent, Jim Sparks, Operations Manager of botched Pryor Round-up - Photo by Terry Fitch

Sparks continually belittled and berated the non-biased Humane Observer Elyse Gardner while treating any polite questions from the observing professionals with disdain.  It was not until the very last day that Sparks demonstrated a single once of civility to the volunteer observers but after a week of nose thumbing it proved to be “too little, too late”.

Months after the failed Pryor round-up McNabb continues to publicly support the actions of the BLM.  With dozens of horses now dead at the hands of the BLM, due to the Calico round-up, McNabb seeks to align himself with the agency that is managing our wild horses into extinction.  What’s in it for McNabb?  It makes one wonder why a “horse trainer” endorses an agency that clearly knows nothing about the management of equines and through it’s own misguided actions kills horses both during their round-up operations and in holding facilities.

So more questions arise; why was McNabb allowed free access to the Britton Springs facility, along with his unsupervised children, while Ms. Kathrens and company were confined to a “protest” area and were under the direction and supervision of a security guard at all times?  Does one need to own cattle to be in favor with the BLM?  Could this be considered discrimination and a clear violation of federal law?  Did Jim Sparks and the “shoot from the hip” BLM step over the line????

More questions for you to ask your Congressman, Senator, Director of the BLM, Secretary of the Interior and the President of the United States.

Bookmark and Share

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Wild Horse Outrage Greets President Obama in Vegas

Written by Simone Netherlands and Elyse Gardner

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Bookmark and Share

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

BLM Contractors Stick a Cattle Prod in the First Amendment

Op-Ed by R.T. Fitch

26 Horses Now Dead at Calico Round-up and Counting


Sue Cattoor speaking to her "hurt feelings" on camera 9/9/09 - Photo by R.T. Fitch

While the world watched another living soul being pulled from the Haitian rubble, a bomb go off in Iraq and a U.S. President hit the reset button; the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) wild horse contractors, the Cattoors, were quietly shoving a cattle prod into your First Amendment rights and attempting a backdoor effort to quell the voice of Wild Horse advocates around the world.

Be it a Blog, Non-Profit, Publication or private citizen, letters from the Cattoor’s attorneys were being delivered in an effort to stifle the truth about what really goes on in one of their “humane” wild horse round-ups. Reading the truth is even more than they can bear.

American citizens should be appalled at the fact that a Federal contractor cannot stand up to being transparent and would turn and bite the very hand that feeds them simply because the truth “hurt” Sue Cattoor’s feelings. You have the right to be enraged as it is your money that made these people multi-millionaires. It’s your money that bought the very helicopters that rain trauma and even death down upon our wild horses and it is your money that you never approved to be spent in this manner yet the very recipients have the audacity to trample on the right of free press and subvert our very Constitution.

Some of the assailed have folded, others will fight back but overall it has sent a ripple of disdain across the free world that is bound to come back and sit squarely on the heads of the Cattoor contractors and the rogue Federal agency, BLM, that hired them.

Perhaps the reason that this rankles me the most is that I had to, personally, put up with the shenanigans and idiosyncrasies of Sue Cattoor and company during the entire botched Pryor Mountain round-up. It’s one thing to be treated like a criminal by the BLM while on our federal land but add to that the continued inane mumbling and commentary of a contractor’s wife while watching the horror and emotionally depleting experience of a BLM round-up is more than most sane people could withstand.

But there we were, with Sue Cattoor buzzing rumors, misinformation and junk science in our ears as we attempted to document the event for what it was; a total, inhumane and unjustified act of animal cruelty.

On the last day of the round-up during the morning meeting, we were not allowed to ask any questions unless they were “operations” oriented. BLM field agent Jim Sparks would walk all over and discredit anyone who would ask a question regarding the horses’ welfare but not when it came to the babble, in my opinion, that fell from the lips of Sue Cattoor. That last day she launched off into a speech on how we handful of advocates had hurt her feelings on our blogs and websites by bringing up the past sins of her husband and that all wild horses should be cleared from the ranges and those that could not be adopted should be destroyed. No one commented, not even the BLM officials, as it was just too bizarre.

On that last day the BLM was to release the horses that they were not going to auction and the likes of Ginger Kathrens, Makendra Silverman, Ben Sussman, Carol Walker, Elyse Gardner, Pam and Tom Nicholes and Terry and myself set up on a bluff, overlooking the area where the horses would be released, and waited to celebrate a few moments of triumph that at least there were a few horses that would be returned to the wild. But do you think that Sue Cattoor could give us any peace? No.

This Federal contractor stood behind us and commented on every single word we said and rained on every good moment we were trying to experience. We were under “guard” by two BLM security individuals and when I begged one to intervene and stop the onslaught of verbal gunshots he turned walked away and when I approached “Chuck” the other agent he simply stared at me.

I asked if he was going to respond and render aid and after thinking about it for a while, he replied:

“I don’t want to trample on her right of free speech.”

Whose rights are being trampled on now?

Since when can a Federal contractor turn on the U.S. press and threaten suit simply because they print the truth? Where do they feel that they have the right to attempt to intimidate those who work with fact versus fiction? This transgression, alone, constitutes the need for a Congressional inquiry not withstanding the fact that 22 horses are dead, to date, during this contested and unnecessary Calico round-up. Those 22 horses would, more than likely, be alive today if not for the dysfunctional BLM and their “humane” contractors, the Cattoors.

The Cattoors and their legal team need a remedial course in the true definition of the First Amendment and we as citizens need to ensure that the likes of the Cattoors do not acquire any more of our hard earned tax dollars.

Enough is enough.

Bookmark and Share

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Terror in Nevada: A BLM Wild Horse Roundup Goes Tragically Wrong

by R.T. Fitch, author of “Straight from the Horse’s Heart

Terrorized and Frozen, the Horses of the Calico Roundup - Photo by Kurt Golgart/Bureau of Land Management

HOUSTON (SFHH) – If ever there were a case of “a picture is worth a thousand words” then this is surely the premier example.

Sheer terror in their eyes, steam coming from not only their breath but from their soaked coats in the freezing temperatures and what has not dissipated into the frigid air has frozen solid to their winter coats.  This is a Department of Interior “approved for release photograph” documenting the cruel and inhumane roundup going on in Northern Nevada at this very moment…and just in, at least one horse is now dead, one that we know of.

Plagued by controversy and bad press BLM Director Bob Abby decided to ignore the advice of a Federal Judge and proceed with a wintertime roundup of epic, disastrous proportions.  Tens of thousands of American citizens have spoken out and demanded that the Obama administration stop this dangerous operation but to date the new President has elected to remain silent on the topic.

Warned by equine professionals that the chasing of wild horses down snow covered mountains with helicopters would not only prove dangerous and deadly but also destroy the health and well being of the native wild animals; again, the BLM pressed forward but this time on private land so that neither the press or the public could view or monitor the deadly operation.

A slow death for a foal in BLM Pen - Photo by Laura Leigh

Many questions have been raised by this clandestine operation that will cost the U.S. tax payers close to $2,000,000.00.

If the horses are being removed because there is, allegedly, little grass on which they can feed, why then did the BLM increase the grazing permits for private cattle by 300% last year, for the exact same public land?

Are the ranchers who own the private land paying and reimbursing the BLM (and US tax payers) for the removal?

Who is allowing the BLM to set up shop on their private land?

Why is the operation done in secret after program manager Don Glenn assured everyone it would be public?

Why is the current Administration, a proposed Administration of “change”, turning a deaf ear to thousands of phone calls, tens of thousands of emails and multiple demonstrations across the country?

Last year the BLM wanted to destroy the 33,000+ wild horses it allegedly has in long term incarceration because it could not afford to feed them; why do they plan on ripping 12,000 more from their rightful land in fiscal 2010?  Does that makes sense?

No, of course it does not make sense, nothing about the random acts of violence the BLM commits makes sense.

The questions are limitless and the answers are obvious to the public but remain unanswered by an agency than has gone full-blown amuck.

As we speak, our young men and women are fighting and losing their lives while battling terror and tyranny that rips apart families, steals their land, kills tribal members and incarcerates the innocent.  Yet here, within the U.S. Government, we have an agency that is doing the exact same thing; ripping apart families; stealing the very land that the U.S. Congress gave to the horses, killing many while they run the remainder into traps where the horses will live in prison for the rest of their lives.

Author/Editor Steven Long documented a recent interview with a BLM official who’s total lack of engagement with the facts should be grounds for immediate dismissal.

Likewise, Mr. Long in yet another in-depth article got to the root of the problem when finding out who was responsible for defying a Federal Judge’s recommendation and proceeded with the roundup with full knowledge that holding said horses, long term, could be illegal.  BLM Director Bob Abby admitted himself into the voting public’s “Hall of Shame” for his disrespectful and cowardice act of pulling the trigger on the wild ones.  Secretary of the Interior, Cattleman Ken Salazar, wins the runner up award for blatant corruption and collusion, but he is pressing hard for first.

The picture tells it all, it speaks volumes and should be sent to the President, himself, with the plea to call a halt to this madness and let the professionals assess the situation prior to mounting anymore dangerous and unwarranted wild horse roundups.

Write, call and make your voice heard.  Let the Administration know that you want a moratorium on the roundups.  You can make a difference, you can save a life and in so doing leave the last final legacy of our frontier roots to live out their lives as intended so that your grandchildren can share in their beauty.

Call Today


Fact Sheet and Overview from The Cloud Foundation Click here for Fact Sheet

Frequently Asked Questions from The Mustang Coalition FAQ About Wild Horses_12_09

Myths About Wild Horses and Burros from Animal Welfare Institute wild-horse-and-burro-facts-and-myths

Words to Save Them from the Animal Welfare Institute Words to Keep Them Wild and Free

Bookmark and Share

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Mommy, Why are they Killing our Wild Ponies?

by R.T. Fitch, author of “Straight from the Horse’s Heart

“Mommy, Mommy, it’s Christmas time, you should not be crying.  Why are you crying, Mommy?

You have been crying since Christmas eve day, the day you read something in the newspaper about the wild ponies.  It was something about a judge saying OK to round up the wild ponies but I don’t understand, Mommy.

You and daddy never let us run our ponies in the snow, you say that it is bad for them that they might trip and fall.  When it is deep they can work too hard and hurt themselves so how come the bad men are chasing the wild ponies through the snow, Mommy?  I don’t understand.

Why are they attacking our wild ponies, I asked everyone and no one tells me anything?  I ask my teacher and she just shakes her head, I ask daddy and he says, ‘Whatever you do don’t ask your mother’ and when I ask you, you cry.  Why Mommy?

I only asked for the ponies to be left alone for Christmas, honest, that’s what I put on my list to Santa by he brought me a little Cloud model, why did you cry when I opened up the present, Mommy?  “Cloud of the Rockies”, remember Mommy, you went there right after school started and tried to stop the bad men.  Why did they chase Cloud and take his wives, children and grandchildren, why Mommy?  You told me that the bad men said that they were hungry but the pictures you took sure don’t make them look hungry, they looked fatter than our horses.  Why don’t you tell me why, Mommy?

Late one night, I heard you and daddy talking about the bad men and when you asked them why they chased the wild ponies they said ‘Because we can’, why Mommy, why can they?  This is America, we have rules, I know because I learned that in school.  If these bad men are government then why are they doing this, Mommy?  Don’t they work for us?  Don’t they follow the rules?  Don’t they have little girls who ask them why they chase the wild ponies, huh, Mommy?

Where is the President, Mommy?  Shouldn’t he be stopping the bad government men?  I remember he promised to be a good President.  I remember he used the word ‘change’ a lot.  Is this what change is Mommy?

Doesn’t the President have little girls like me, Mommy?  Do you think they ask their daddy why he is letting the government hurt the ponies, Mommy?  I know that this is bad, Mommy.

Please stop crying, I have a lot to ask; there is so much that I do not understand.  The horses are hurting and I know you want to help.  Are you crying because you are not going out west next week, to watch the wild ponies?  I thought that you said they were going to let you watch and now you say no, what went wrong, Mommy?  I was looking forward to staying with Grandma, what happened Mommy?

The computer shows me some scary things about the wild ponies getting hurt, Mommy.  I know you don’t like it but I am a big girl, now.  I can see it, I have my own ponies to take care of but I don’t understand about the wild ponies, Mommy.

Please don’t cry, I need you to tell me, Mommy.  Why Mommy, what did the wild horses do?  There are hundreds of big ole cows there, much more than the wild ponies; why not chase the cows, Mommy?  Why bother the horses?  Please don’t shake your head cause I need to know, Mommy.

Mommy, can I ask you a big girl question?  I am not stupid and think that I am pretty smart but I can’t figure this out.  Mommy, will you take my hand when I ask you this question, please?  I am really pretty smart and I need to know this more than anything else in the whole wide world because I do not understand, okay?

Mommy, why are they killing our wild ponies?”

Bookmark and Share

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]