Reprint: Men, Horses, Sex and a Thing Called Love

Last published 01/09/2011, (In My Humble Opinion) R.T. Fitch ~ author of “Straight from the Horse’s Heart

On the Eve of the despicable BLM wild horse stampede and destruction of Wyoming’s Great Basin horses it is difficult to come up with something fun, interesting and uplifting for ‘Feel Good Sunday’ so I sit at the keyboard and struggle with multiple emotions and thoughts running together at many different levels.

I am frustrated that I will not be there to witness for the horses, tomorrow. Just several hours ago I returned from a 6-week stint on the other side of the world and the ranching duties that have piled up before me, here at home, are momentous in their number and scope. Plus, in only three days time we leave for the 4th annual International Equine Conference  (IEC) with the BoD of Wild Horse Freedom Federation immediately followed by, once again, way too much time away.

But as I squirm in my chair and contemplate an early Wrangler Iced Tea my mind and heart reaches out to those who will be there for the helicopter stampede in the morning and warms to the fact that several women very close to me will bare their souls and witness the end and final destruction of wild horse’s freedom and families.

Good friend and colleague, Ginger Kathrens will be there and I personally know how viewing such carnage pains her to the very depths of her soul.

Our own Carol Walker will be there and like Ginger, this will be a test of her strength and fortitude to witness such blatant violations of a law intended to save and protect now twisted into one that destroys and maims.

My heart goes out to them…and it also realizes that other women, best friends of mine, are in the trenches working, particularly this week between the rotten roundup and the uplifting and fortifying IEC occurring.

Vicki Tobin is busy selflessly putting the final touches on the IEC.

Victoria McCullough is preparing her home for the members of the IEC.

Simone Netherlands, Marjorie Farabee, Susan Wagner and Mims are polishing up their presentations while Debbie Coffey, Dawn Reveley and Terry Fitch are in the process of traveling and/or finalizing plans to be at the IEC along with Ginger and Carol who will come directly from the roundup.

Lisa LeBlanc, Grandma Gregg, “S” and many others are intently monitoring activity and keeping the Blogosphere in check… the list of ‘women’ I love goes on and on…

…which brings me to today’s installment, a reprint that, perhaps, is distant text captured in one of my more enlightened moments and saved for posterity to be shared over and over again, as the message is timeless and the written intent is pure.

I offer you some truth, today, and a love well grounded…we extend to you peace, strength and look forward to seeing many of you at the IEC later this week.

Thank you all for being who you are; each and everyone of are very special, indeed.” ~ R.T., 14/09/2014

Rebecca Williams, VP of Habitat for Horses, with several of the Fitch boys ~ Photo by Terry Fitch

Recently I was engaged in an email conversation, with a group of colleagues, on the issue of the extensive cruelty exhibited by Federal agencies and our government, overall.  The discussion was centered on the unimaginable suffering that our native wild horses are subjected to at the hands of the Obama administration’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) headed up by Bob Abbey under the direction of 5th generation rancher, Ken Salazar the Secretary of the Department of Interior (DOI). (Interesting to note that currently the DOI and BLM’s WH&B program are headed by women) As the conversation progressed it became apparent that the bulk of the mindless cruelty, shown to our federally protected mustangs, is administered by and distributed through men.  Hence, the question arose;

Why is it that men consider equines to be such a threat?

I found the question to be of great interest as both myself and my good friend Jerry Finch, President of Habitat for Horses, have been pondering this same issue for many years.  Jerry and I have been in the horse rescue business for over a decade and we often wondered, as we looked around our ranks, where are all the guys?

Now my intent is not to insult nor do I wish to stereotype but if you will indulge me I would like to offer my observations from well over a half a century of living with and around my own gender.  If there are any gentlemen out there who might recognize themselves in these words take heart as you may be able to make a significant shift that could reap you ample rewards in your current and future relationships be they equine in nature or with human females, they all subscribe to the same forms of acknowledgment.

Overall, and this is huge, the bulk of all men are insecure…full stop.  That’s why we speak loud, push things around, believe that size matters, play with balls and call it a sport, start wars and subjugate women and animals.  Ya can’t deny that boys.

Men like things that they can control such as cars (just point it to where you want it to go and it goes), boats, aircraft, guns, tools, dogs and all things that bend quickly and directly to the male whim.  Men cannot nor ever will be able to adequately command or control cats, horses and/or women…ain’t gonna happen so the result is, often times, abuse and neglect.  Even though I claim no formal education in psychiatry it doesn’t take more than a high school education and an in tune heart to figure that one out.

Terry Fitch, co-founder of Wild Horse Freedom Federation, with her Pele ~ Photo by R.T. Fitch

Female induced abuse and neglect upon an equine is rare and is usually associated with some form of mental disorder.   When was the last time you heard of a husband having the living crap beat out of him by his wife?  Hard to conjure that image up isn’t it? (IMHO)

The male insecurity is amplified when the woman in his life falls in love with a horse and here is where real sparks can begin to fly.  Being inherently insecure the male is jealous of the fact that the human female he desires is sharing and spending love, time and attention on the horse that should be spent on him.  He feels that she must not really have the care and concern for him that he wants or needs if she can show so much affection to another creature while he only stands in the wings.  This insecurity is what has driven many equine related relationships into divorce court, we have all seen it a dozen times over.

There is also the Freudian sexual thing all wrapped up into that mess but that is more than we can go into, here.  Again, it goes back to the bigger is better syndrome and the size thing.

Now men who love women who love horses have a couple of things in their saddle bags that their brothers do not; they are comfortable in their own skins and secure with their sexuality, hands down.  If the woman of a horsemen loves a horse the man sees that women with an expanded heart and a depth of feeling that warms his insides.  Looking out across the pasture and seeing my wife hugging on her horse lights me up because she cares so much about something so special and has room in her heart for not only me but other sentient creatures it just plain turns me on, it’s that simple.

Women who love animals are special spirits as they have the unique ability to carry their compassion outside the realm of human circles and can spread sunshine to all the other travelers on this spaceship we call Earth.  And women who love horses are truly exceptional in the breadth, depth and conviction of their love as they not only have taken the leap from human ties but have bonded and partnered with a creature that is many times larger than her physical being.

Artist Leslie Anne Webb with one of the Loves of her life ~ Photo by R.T. Fitch

Horsewomen have changed the face of the Equestrian world over the last 40 or so years.  The days of using manly terms like “broke” have been replaced with gentled, partnered or bonded.  There are a few guys out there working with horses but they have become smart enough to develop and promote like techniques knowing that their largest audience is the compassionate side of the human race.

But bullies be forewarned; all of the love and compassion that a woman shows a horse can quickly be turned into the hottest and most tenacious fire that you ever hope to see if you should be guilty of harming any equines within her realm of influence.  This is something that abusers have known for a long time as you just do not want to cross a woman over being abusive to a horse and this is also a lesson that the BLM is learning at the very time of this writing.  The most honest, sincere, committed and knowledgeable equine advocates on this planet are women; we accompanying males pale in comparison.  There is something almost magical and supernatural about the ambiance of the women who are dedicated to the cause and commitment to ensuring the health, safety and welfare of our American horse be they wild or domestic.  For an enlightened male this is a tremendous blessing but for the slow to learn, it could spell their demise.

Maybe it’s genetically driven guilt for the sins that my brothers have rained down upon woman and horse alike or perhaps it’s a misplaced chromosome that bends me to their way of thinking but regardless of  the subliminal driver there is one thing for certain; if there is ever any hope of putting ourselves back in touch with the planet around us, and the other inhabitants of this world, it will not be the males of our species but the female who will save us from our own eminent self-destruction.  For within the spirit of the woman resides not only the hope for our future but the heart and the soul of the entire human race.

I am beyond pleased and proud to stand amongst the thousands of women who have made the commitment to protect the most benevolent of all animals on this planet.

I respectfully take off my hat and thank you for allowing me to share your grace; all of you special souls are my most heartfelt hero’s.

Vicki Tobin & Daryl Smoliak of Equine Welfare Alliance on Wild Horse & Burro Radio, Wed., Aug. 20th



WEDNESDAY, August 20, 2014

5:00 pm PST … 6:00 pm MST … 7:00 pm CST … 8:00 pm EST

Listen Live (Here!)

Call in # 917-388-4520

This is a 2 hour show, and you can call in with questions at any time.

The shows will be archived, so you can listen anytime.

vicki tobin

Vicki Tobin (center), V.P of Equine Welfare Alliance with two of our favorite men, RT Fitch and John Holland (Pres. of EWA)


Equine Welfare Alliance Board member Daryl Smoliak (ANOTHER favorite man!)

Our guests tonight are Vicki Tobin, Vice President of Equine Welfare Alliance (EWA) and Daryl Smoliak, Board member of EWA, which is a dues free, all volunteer 501(c)(4) umbrella organization representing
– over 325 member organizations
– The Southern Cherokee Government
– over 1,145 individual members worldwide in 22 countries.

EWA and its members are involved in a grass roots effort dedicated to ending the slaughter of American Horses and the preservation and protection of our Wild Horses & Burros on public lands.

They will be talking about many issues, including the upcoming 2014 International Equine Conference in Wellington, FL.

This radio show is co-hosted by Debbie Coffey, Vice-President & Director of Wild Horse Affairs at Wild Horse Freedom Federation.

Continue reading

Horse Slaughter: It Ain’t Over Until the Fat Lady Sings

Source: Vicki Tobin of the Equine Welfare Alliance

No “Done Deals” with USDA Cluster Fart

We-have-had-enoughThe questions and rumors are flying and everyone wants answers. We ask that you stay the course and keep in contact with your legislators. There is a lot going on, some we can discuss, some we can’t. Our opponents are desperate and I’m sure all of you don’t want to help them undo what has been done, thus far. We can say with certainty, we are still on course and have the best, and I do mean best, people working on this.

Your phone calls and the work they are doing resulted in the where we are with the appropriations bills. The bills were passed out of committee on a voice vote – overwhelming support without a need for a roll-call. This is huge and is an impetus for Congress to pass the SAFE act to end it once and for all. We will be discussing this at the conference but for now, we just can’t take the chance of undermining their work. All it takes is one post on facebook and it will be all over facebook for everyone to read. 

 Keep in mind, if the bills should go to committee to reconcile, there is nothing to reconcile on the two bills because they both contain the same language. In light of what happened in the 112th session, there are congressmen and senators on both side of the aisle that will be watching closely to make certain they don’t pull another stunt like last time. In addition, unlike the last session, defunding inspections was included in the administration’s recommendation for the budget. 

Of note, is nothing that has been done, thus far, by the darkside was done because of support. Conrad Burns (at the request of Harry Reid) snuck the three strikes language on the wild ones into the bill after everyone had reviewed the bill. The defunding language was removed behind closed doors, without discussion, on a must pass bill. The permits for inspections were issued because of force, not because it was what the government, states, taxpayers, horse industry or horse owners wanted. Their voices were heard in the house and senate appropriations committee hearings that overwhelming voted to defund horse inspections. Most importantly, let’s not forget how they block, stall and enter secret holds on the federal legislation every session to keep the bills from going to the floor for a vote. If they think they have so much support, what are they afraid of? 

Stay tuned for updates. We’ll let you know what you can do to help ensure we get it done this year. We can’t stress enough that your phone calls and meetings with your legislators played a big role. 

The darkside has issued statements to their few supporters on the recent announcement by USDA to issue inspection permits. Granting inspections was not unexpected. The USDA, by law, has to issue the permits. You can read the statements (and comment) at the below links. Two are from Wallis and the other from Duquette (most likely written by Puppymill Patterson). – Duquette – Wallis – Wallis

Something to keep in mind as you read their drivel is that the recent developments were amidst overwhelming opposition and was accomplished by force. not support. In NM, 70% were against the plant as well as the Governor and Attorney General. This is far from over. We’ll let you know of any additional information that we receive.  

The advocates in the 3 states (IA, NM & MO) that have received inspection permits must continue to have their voices heard.


BTW-Shedrow is back and has a great editorial posted: 

Blood Lust and Premature Victory Dances 

Toxins Sweepin’ Down the Plains

Guest OpEd by Vicki Tobin ~ VP of Equine Welfare Alliance

“Skye McNiel wants to use the food chain to dispose of horses…”
Horse-Hater Skye Mcniel

Horse-Hater Skye Mcniel

Nothing is sweeter than having the darkside validate what we have been saying for years. I came across an article yesterday that was regarding the conflict of interest with Skye O’Niel in Oklahoma. The opening paragraph is something everyone should send to the USDA, your legislators and any contacts you have outside our borders to make sure the EU and consumers hear this loud and clear.

“Rep. Skye McNiel said that gain would be shared equally by all the state’s horse auctioneers and is not substantial compared to the financial gain to the state’s horse owners who are seeking an avenue to dispose of animals that have lost their use.”

Did you get that? Skye McNiel wants to use the food chain to dispose of horses. This statement is clear indication of how seriously slaughter supporters take food safety and the arrogant attitude toward foreign consumers.

While the epic horse meat scandal is raging in Europe, Skye McNiel and her buddies in the Oklahoma legislature rammed through legislation against the cries of outrage from their constituents. Skye McNeil is celebrating tonight and will have visions of dollar signs in her sleep. Not only will her family’s auction benefit financially but the legislation makes sure of it. No horses will be accepted that haven’t gone through an auction. Isn’t that special?

To add to the arrogance, the meat is still illegal to consume in Oklahoma! Another clear message that she doesn’t want the residents of Oklahoma eating toxic meat – just send it to the foreigners.

It gets better, folks. While Oklahoma was ram-rodding the legislation, Sue Wallis sent out one of her blue light specials. From the title to her close, it is the biggest pile of horse manure yet. Her prose came out of the other end of the horse – you know, the end where all her statistics originate. Here are a few highlights that I found entertaining.

Let’s start with the rally in Oklahoma. She states with pleasure that no anti-slaughter activists were there. Wrong again, Sue. We had many in attendance just to hear the horse manure, first hand. Here’s a hint, Sue. Don’t have the Farm Bureau bus people in that don’t have a clue about horse slaughter or at least give them one of your scripts so they don’t appear to be clueless. Oh, wait. You don’t have any facts to give them. Forgive my lapse.

For those of you that aren’t familiar with the Farm Bureau, they are a lobby firm that sells insurance. They lobby against anything remotely related to animal welfare and are responsible for most of the state legislation against animals, like Ag gag laws. They have a presence in virtually every state.

Here is but one example of Sue’s (as she calls them) “articulate supporters”. One of the anti-slaughter activists that wasn’t there asked two of her “articulate supporters” why they supported horse slaughter. They replied in unison “Because euthanasia is too expensive.” The one that wasn’t there replied “Really, how much does it cost in Oklahoma?” Sue’s “articulate supporters” looked at each other and then replied “I don’t know, do you? The other replied, No, but I bet the girls over there know.” So, either they don’t own horses or they don’t live in Oklahoma and they just weren’t sly enough to make up a number – something any Wallis graduate would know. Sue must have bused them in from New York City because as everyone knows, those city folk just don’t know about horses. We hope she bribed them with more than a free lunch and free bus ride on the Farm Bureau express.

We were hoping to hear from someone speaking with a French accent to espouse the virtues of cheval and how much they appreciate the free sides of Ivermectin and Clenbuterol with their buteburger (ICB). Doesn’t that negate any protein or nutrition? Hey, Sue, you could use those initials for the next organization you start. ICB, Inc., the conscience of the food safety industry. It has a nice ring to it.

A blue light special from Wallis wouldn’t be complete without a little Wallis math. Sue proclaimed there were 400 in attendance at the horse killer rally. This number is coming from someone that claimed 689,000 jobs were lost when the plants closed. A number clearly pulled out of the end previously mentioned. The plants employed a total of 200 workers, of which at least 85% were undocumented. That means a total of 30 American jobs were lost. Keep in mind, the kill buyers, the auctions and the haulers are all still in business so it was only the plant workers that lost their jobs. Only with Wallis math can 30 become 689,000 and 100 become over 400. So when Wallis says over 400 people attended, you can bet the farm that the number was significantly less as confirmed by the anti-slaughter activists that “weren’t there” as well as Skye O’Niel that reported 100.

Sue Wallis  contemplating whether horse or donkey is on the menu for tonight

Sue Wallis contemplating whether horse or donkey is on the menu for tonight

As expected, Wallis is attacking the recently introduced federal legislation, S 541, claiming it doesn’t provide solutions. Cutting off the supply of toxic meat is most certainly a solution. It ensures that the right of consumers to safe food is not compromised. She also can’t seem to get her agriculture industries straight. The meat industry produces meat. The horse industry requires live horses and does not produce meat. Horse slaughter has not provided any solutions for the horse industry and her lame excuses for needing it are moot. It has existed for decades and only provides more of the same. A solution cannot be formulated without addressing the root cause. If slaughter was the solution, why will there be more horses to kill this year? Didn’t all the excess, abandoned, old, sick, lame, dangerous and useless horses get killed last year and the year before and the year before…? What year will horse slaughter provide a solution?

The USDA stated that if horse slaughter plants open in the US, there is no way to guarantee that what is happening in Europe, won’t happen here. We learned on March 15, that two plants were shut down for falsified paperwork— something the US has turned into a science. The USDA also stated they support reinstating the ban on horse meat inspections.

I’ll bet Sue broke out in hives when she heard those statements from the USDA. Press coverage of Wallis has virtually disappeared because the media finally gets it. They are doing their homework before going to press and it’s difficult to use Wallis’ statistics and statements because they can never be verified, unless the wind is blowing in the right direction.

Wallis keeps regurgitating “humane and regulated” and yet, still defends the cruelty and abuse. She has yet to tell us how she will provide medical histories from birth for abandoned horses when she can’t find the owners. Where will she get medical histories on the stolen horses and horses that have had multiple owners? How exactly will they comply with EU regulations when the EU requires a passport system that we don’t have and horse owners don’t want? How will she fix a humane transport enforcement program that hasn’t really existed for decades?

The law is the law, humane methods of slaughter law, promise of cheval, facts and FAQs, blah, blah, blah. Since when has anyone in the slaughter business followed the law or Wallis every cited anything factual? It must have been an oversight that she didn’t quote anything from food safety laws.

How very sad Sue places the greed and corruption that is inherent in the horse slaughter business above the rights of consumers to safe food. Our right to safe food will also be compromised. We don’t have enough inspectors for our own food and if plants open, there will be even less available to safeguard our food supply.

No doubt, the horse industry is feeling the impacts of the economy but that has nothing to do with horse slaughter. Horse slaughter has continued uninterrupted and is still thriving. More horses were slaughtered in the 5 years since the plants closed than the 5 years prior so there is in-your-face proof that horse slaughter isn’t going to fix anything in the horse industry.

Face reality, Sue; horse slaughter is on life support and all that is needed is for Congress to pull the plug. That day is coming very soon.

Call your legislators and demand they support food safety by cosponsoring HR 1094 and S 541 and then visit Popvox and voice your support of HR 1094 and S 541.

SFTHH Exclusive: “Predictions”

Guest OpEd by Vicki Tobin ~ VP of Equine Welfare Alliance

“Our predictions are now a reality that can’t be ignored”

Horse MeatPredictions come in many forms. Some from a gut feeling or wishing it were so. For equine advocates, they were based on evidence and scientific fact. We predicted that foreign consumers would realize the US had been allowing toxic meat to enter their food chain. We predicted that horse slaughter would give the meat industry a black eye.

What we didn’t predict was the prediction coming true with hurricane force.

Our predictions are now a reality that can’t be ignored. Slaughter supporters laughed and called us everything from radical vegan wackos to culturally ignorant. The two loudest mouthpieces are silent. The darkside duo, Sue Wallis and Dave Duquette haven’t uttered a peep on the epic scandal rocking the meat industry and horse slaughter business. The silence is deafening from the US meat industry.

For weeks the scandal has been raging and the two that kept the propaganda flowing with lame emails and excuses have suddenly disappeared. The two that claimed horse slaughter was humane, highly regulated, defended kill buyers with arrest records and a livestock plant owner shut down by the USDA for inhumane treatment of slaughter animals, have finally shut up. They probably still don’t get it and are trying to find a way to spin what has happened.

The darkside duo’s Facebook group is now a closed group. While we miss the entertainment value, it is one less site full of propaganda that the public can stumble upon.

Their fight was never about welfare or feeding the hungry. The latter means comprehending food safety and the difference between an animal raised for food vs. one raised for other purposes. It means understanding you don’t send an abandoned horse to slaughter because if you can’t find the owner, you can’t obtain vet records to prove the horse is safe for consumption. I’m sure the consumers of the toxic meat will take comfort in Wallis’ word that the horses probably didn’t have much vet care.

Is that how the US qualifies animals for food production?

Perhaps with foreign countries protesting and calling for a ban on horse meat it will sink it. Perhaps now that consumers don’t want [or are afraid] to buy anything containing beef, it will sink in.

The scandal has not only exposed the lies, deceit and fraud from the global meat industry but has exposed the underbelly of the horse meat trade. The US slaughters millions of cows and yet, much of the beef in our stores have multiple countries on the labels. Why are we importing beef from Canada, Mexico and Uruguay and is it really beef? The world now knows that the horse meat business makes its own rules and doesn’t give a damn about food safety or the humans consuming the meat. All they care about is lining their pockets.

Does anyone really think what is happening in Europe isn’t happening here? We don’t know because our government keeps us in the dark like mushrooms.

Europe has found a way around passports. In the US, kill buyers and auctions are pros at falsifying EIDs for US horses going to Canada and health affidavits for US horses going to Mexico. Mexico also requires chips for all horses entering Mexico. Does anyone wonder how all US horses mysteriously have chips at the border?

We proved through decades of investigations the cruelty inherent with horse slaughter. We proved that US horses containing banned substances are entering the global food chain but our Congress chose to believe the propaganda from the meat industry.

Our organization sent copies from auctions of the falsified paper work to the EU almost two years ago and never received a response. Canadian Horse Defence Coalition did the same in Canada. The EU’s own FVO reports confirmed banned drugs and falsified paperwork and yet they and Congress continued to allow US horses into Canada and Mexico to turn into toxic meat for their consumers.

Let’s not forget to thank legislators Kingston, Blunt and Kohl for making it possible for states like Oklahoma to introduce slaughter bills. It is mind boggling that in the midst of the scandal, Oklahoma is still moving forward with the legislation.

What I find ironic is the cattle industry supporting horse slaughter because of the “slippery slope” nonsense and the darkside duo claiming we are all out to bring down animal agriculture—when in fact—they’re doing it themselves. The cattle industry has had years to distance itself from horse slaughter so now, they can live with the “unintended consequences”.

They can’t blame advocates for mislabeling beef or supporting sending toxic horse meat to consumers.

Maybe no one listened to us but I bet they’re listening now. So all you tireless equine advocates stand up and shout out loud, WE TOLD YOU SO…

EWA Issues New “Tales from the Darkside”: U.S. Horse Eater Updates

by Vicki Tobin ~ VP of Equine Welfare Alliance

They came from beyond…
Red Blooded All American Horse Eater

Red Blooded All American Horse Eater

As you may be aware, the OK bills passed out of both the senate and house committees. We are seeing posts flying in panic with some saying it’s with the governor for signature. This is far from over. The house and senate bills must go to their respective full membership for debate before the bills go to the floor for a vote so there is still time to stop them. We will keep you posted with additional information as it becomes available.

My apologies for not posting the latest slaughter stats. I updated my spreadsheet and forgot to upload the files. Not that you want to see these but here they are….. 167,690 and that doesn’t include December for Canada and Japan. We should have those shortly. And the darkside keeps saying the slaughter option is gone???


By Week and Month:

United Horsemen issued the below yesterday. With so many countries in the largest horse meat scandal in history and the threat looming of the USDA shutting down and all they can do is issue another asinine memo trying to discredit a respected legislator with nonsense while they take another stab at HSUS. Still dead silence on the horse meat scandal. I know I shouldn’t be amazed but it IS amazing at their grasp on the definition of words they use. They are accusing Whitfield & his wife of a conflict of interest with a bill Whitfield is going to introduce amending or replacing the Horse Act.

What about the conflict of interest Sue Wallis had when she introduced legislation that would financially benefit her slaughter plans? How about Skye McNiel‘s conflict of interest with the horse slaughter legislation she introduced in OK? Her family owns the largest horse slaughter auction in the state and stands to benefit financially.

The Whitfield’s do not have a conflict of interest because they don’t stand to benefit financially from animals being treated humanely. The satisfaction of knowing you did the right thing on behalf of those that have no voices is not a conflict of interest. It is a noble act and should be commended.

If you are reading this Dave, here is the definition. So you don’t have to look it up, pecuniary is defined as relating to or consisting of money.

A term used to describe the situation in which a public official or fiduciary who, contrary to the obligation and absolute duty to act for the benefit of the public or a designated individual, exploits the relationship for personal benefit, typically pecuniary.

Congressman Whitfield No Friend of Horse Industry

For Immediate Release

February 11, 2013

Congressman Ed Whitfield (R-KY) is preparing to introduce a bill intended to replace the Horse Protection Act. Written by the Humane Society of the United States, this new Horse Protection Act would serve as the final crushing blow to what remains of the U.S. Horse industry. While it is intended to regulate the Tennessee Walking Horse Industry, Congressman Whitfield’s bill sets precedent for further onerous regulatory action that could harm horse industry professionals in Whitfield’s state of Kentucky and all across the nation.

The Congressman’s wife, Connie Harriman, currently serves as the Senior Advisor for Presidential Initiatives at The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)

It is clear that this new devised Horse Protection Act serves to advance the radical animal rights agenda as it follows the goals as written in the HSUS Change Agenda for Animals.

This action is a conflict of interest for Congressman Whitfield to write policy regulating the horse industry while his wife is employed by the very organization which seeks its demise.


Dave "Doink" Duquette

Dave “Doink” Duquette

Dave Duquette

United Horsemen

Ph. 541-571-7588


The Wild Horse and Burro Christmas Carol

Joint effort by Vicki Tobin and R.T. Fitch

This little piece originally appeared on SFTHH on Christmas Day of 2009.  As of late it has graced the pages of the December 2010 edition of TrueCowboy Magazine and SFTHH in 2011

Twas the night before Christmas on our public land
not a Mustang was stirring, knowing what was at hand.
They huddled in fear hoping someone would care,
in hopes that the advocates soon would be there.

The foals hid in cover while Mom stood her ground
while stallions ensured Sun-J was no where around.
With Salazar lurking and Cattor so close by
the bands must stay quiet and not blink an eye.

When out on the range there arose such a clatter
the Mustangs all knew, what was the matter.
They ran to take cover, on wings they did fly
for surely they thought that they all would soon die.

The visions of millions made contractors grin
while ranchers and wranglers high-fived a big win.
More horses removed by ignoring the law
hold on to your hats and stand back in awe.

The chopper did glisten on new fallen snow
sealing the fate of the horses below.
When all of a sudden, the bands all stood still
and watched as the chopper came over the hill.

They stood in amazement, can it really be true
the advocates appeared right out of the blue.
The horses retreated; not believing their eyes
for surely this is a BLM guise.

Then leading the charge, both lively and quick
were Downer and Holland and Fitch with a stick.
More rapid than lightening, Cate was in tow
with Simone close behind, telling all where to go.

Now Ginger and Wagman and Ann times two,
Oh Debbie and Grandma and Julie it’s you.
Now Vicki and Jerry and right there is Anne
now Terry and Marjorie with their cameras in hand.

Down the hill they descended toward the horses with care
and watched as the chopper, fled into the air.
The advocates came with injunction in hand
the decree shouted out, “this is our public land”.

“Enough is enough” the judge did declare
the horses were saved by the breadth of a hair.
Our work here’s not done, the advocates did cry
the choppers still flying, more herds could be spied.

Its back to D.C. with a permanent plan
to ensure all the horses can live on their land.
So love was delivered to the horses with pride
but the warriors must leave so that no more would die.

They climbed up the hill and turned back to the band
who all now had gathered on what was their land.
“We carry you with us”, R.T. did proclaim,
“We go to the White House to show them your way.”

The horses all bowed with a sign of approval
as they all now knew that there was no removal.
They neighed and they nickered to the spirit above
Thanks for sending the people who gave us their love.

The Moran Pro-Horse/Anti-Slaughter Amendment WILL Stand…

Guest OpEd by Vicki Tobin ~ VP of the Equine Welfare Alliance

if the voices of horse owners and advocates are heard

“Slaughterhouse” $ue Wallis

As expected, Wallis has issued another of her manifestos. Of note is her wise decision to go with a cartoon as a logo because her ramblings get more and more comical with each new email. As usual, the issue of drug residue traceability in horses is completely ignored.

As with all of Wallis’ incoherent emails, you must read between the lines. So let’s dissect the nonsensical paragraphs…

The amendment accepted by the House Appropriations Committee isn’t much of a surprise, it’s just a bump in the road to reestablishing humane, government-regulated equine processing in the United States. The Senate has wisely refused to include such language in its Ag spending bill, or the Farm Bill, so we’ll do what we did a year ago: remove the short-sighted language in conference committee should it come to that. Bottom Line – We are confident wiser heads will ultimately prevail.

What she is saying is that she knows her efforts will never succeed. So to make certain she gets her way, she will have it done behind closed doors where no one can debate the issue and where horse owners and horse advocates cannot have their voices heard.

This is akin to what they do with the Horse Slaughter Prevention legislation. They know they will lose if the bills go to the floor for a vote so they stall, block and place secret holds on the legislation.

The Moran amendment does NOT deal with the real issues of starving horses, or the demise of the horse as a valued domestic animal as indicated by the more than 70% drop in numbers of horses available for pleasure, sport, and work, nor does it deal with all of the problems that have happened to the horse world as a direct result of HSUS action since 2007.

This is perhaps one of the most irrational things Wallis has ever penned. She appears to be saying that we do not have enough horses left because we have not killed enough of them. This statement makes no sense on either side of the looking glass. Horse slaughter does not deal with the real issues of starving horses because they are not the horses going to slaughter—not to mention that they were not raised as food animals and therefore, should not go to slaughter.

The Moran amendment would, in fact, increase and exacerbate these problems by rendering literally worthless hundreds of thousands of valuable horses as completely unmarketable…undoubtedly increasing the burden on local agencies and taxpayers to deal with them…a loss and a cost, including thousands of equine jobs, that would far exceed the potential revenue to every level of government generated by normal commerce and a free market.

This makes no sense. Why would she want to kill hundreds of thousands of valuable horses? Why should local taxpayers have to deal with them? Isn’t that the owner’s responsibility? What a great lesson to teach your children on the responsibilities of owning an animal.  Correct me if I’m wrong, but don’t equine services (other than renderers) need live horses to work with. I’ve never heard of farriers working on dead horses or feed and tack providers selling to dead horses. Perhaps Wallis is planning on hiring farriers to trim hooves before they’re butchered. Or maybe she is planning a “last supper” for all of them and then buying new trailers to haul them to the plant.

It is sad that opponents of equine processing contend it’s okay to euthanize an unwanted horse, but it’s not okay to use exactly the same methods to do so under a USDA-regulated, modern and humane system that allows the horse to provide economic value to the farmer/owner and high grade protein to the ultimate purchaser of horse meat, whether here or abroad.

An entire paragraph that is one sentence! What is sad is that anyone would believe this horse manure. Sue, there is a difference between having regulations and enforcing them. Is this going to be the same type of modern plant like the Grandin plant in Canada that was shut down by the government or the same type of plant that had to bolt a horse 11 times? Perhaps it will be like the plant that shoots both eyes out and still must shoot a third time to drop the horse. Yes, we all know the type of regulated plants she will open. We had them here in the US and both states shut them down (not HSUS as she claims). We have the FOIAs and GAO report from the US plants that were USDA regulated. It is shame she continues to ignore the facts and keeps repeating her mantra; humane and regulated. There is no evidence there is such a thing as humane and regulated from any horse slaughter plant that has slaughtered US horses.

Also note, there is no mention of where she is going to get millions to fix the non-existent transport program, inspections, start a national passport system, pay for wastewater clean-up, litigation to get the plants to pay their fines, law enforcement, etc. It’s okay to shove that down the throats of taxpayers so she can kill horses but perish the thought of using taxpayer dollars for a program that would actually help horses.

Would you like a side of Clenbuterol with your bute burger to go along with all that protein? Perhaps a dash of Ivermectin?

Jim Moran of Virginia is an “inside the beltway congressman” doing the bidding of the largest, most aggressive political animal rights organization-yet another Washington D.C. special interest group raising money by vilifying the hard-working, honest, taxpaying agricultural people of America. While it is clear that Jim Moran, HSUS, and a few urban members do not understand the welfare of horses or the economics of rural America, we are confident that the Senate will stand firm for horse owners.

Jim Moran does not do “bidding” for anyone. How dare she, a state representative that does the bidding for a foreign meat industry [not the horse industry] make such an absurd, false statement about a highly respected member of Congress, He does what he does because it is the right thing to do. Whether you are for or against horse slaughter, human food safety should be a top priority with everyone. Our meat industry can ill afford another black eye and that is exactly the unintended consequence of horse slaughter. The callous disregard for food safety in horses and trying to find any possible way to get around food safety laws has everyone questioning the safety of our own food supply. The budget for inspectors was slashed and she wants to add to the workload that will take away from our own food inspections. Please take note that not one legislator that supports horse slaughter addresses this issue or the safety of horse meat. Sue has them trained well.

Already there are plans in 18 states and 12 tribal nations to build modern processing plants; USDA has already received applications for slaughter certification and more are in the pipeline.

Archive this statement! When it doesn’t happen, you can rest assured, she’ll say she was misquoted. Case in point, Mountain Grove, MO. She was run out on a rail and then, instead of admitting defeat, she states she had already ruled out that location. If you did, Sue, then please tell everyone why you would schedule a meeting to try to sell the plant that nobody wanted only to be shot down, yet again, AFTER you had ruled out the location?

Is that like losing the amendment vote and then telling everyone what a great job they did? Or lying to your supporters by telling them the calls were three to one against the amendment when know it was the exact opposite? Sooner or later, your minions will wake up and start questioning you. And we all look forward to what you will tell them.

And be sure to share that drug paper one of your supporters is working on. It is sure to be masterpiece when they still don’t know the difference between race day drug testing and food safety testing. Before the document is released, you might to advise them to read the recent EU report and the white paper from Ireland that you keep ignoring instead of the 2008 report you keep quoting that references protocols, not results.

Oh, and BTW, a voice vote carries as much weight as a roll call.



Obama Urged to Keep ” No Horse Slaughter” Campaign Promise

Pro-Horse Slaughter Terrorists Used Alleged “Dirty Tricks” on White House Website

"No More Horse Slaughter!" ~ then candidate Barack Obama 2008

Chicago (EWA) – During his 2008 campaign, President Obama promised his unequivocal support for a ban on horse slaughter. “Now is the time for you to keep that promise, Mr. President,” says John Holland, president of Equine Welfare Alliance.

Calling it “paramount to public health”, the Equine Welfare Alliance (EWA) and Animal Law Coalition (ALC) sent a letter to President Obama, urging him to support a ban on equine slaughter for human consumption.  The groups also presented the president with more than 6,000 signatures on a White House petition calling for an end to equine slaughter for human consumption.

At the time the petition was created, the White House indicated the administration would consider any issue with at least 5,000 signatures. The equine slaughter ban petition easily gathered more signatures, more quickly than a petition created to reinstate equine slaughter for human consumption in the U.S. The opposition petition was lacking 2,750 signatures when the petition to ban horse slaughter reached 5,000.

Realizing they didn’t have the support, slaughter supporters solicited the help of the American Quarter Horse Association to attempt to reach the required number of signatures. As the deadline approached, the pro-slaughter petition was still well below the required 5,000 signatures. Almost 1,000 then appeared overnight to reach the required minimum, but many of the last minute entries consisted of nothing more than first and last initials. If that wasn’t suspicious enough, this came after a call from the opposition to obtain a list of friends and family that “didn’t have computers” to register and sign for them.

Sadly, the White House petition site lacks security precautions to prevent such apparent abuse and to assure one vote per individual. POPVOX, a site which has better security against fraud, has consistently registered support for anti-slaughter legislation at a rate of 3 to 1.

While the argument over horse slaughter is hot and contentious, the fact remains that American horses were not raised for human consumption. “The disregard for food safety of European consumers is unconscionable” stated EWA’s Vicki Tobin. “If they tried to sell the meat from our horses In the U.S., they would be in violation of government food safety regulations.”

Horse slaughter has not ended or slowed down since the US slaughter plants were closed in 2007. The same number of horses are being slaughtered as when the domestic plants were open. It should be obvious, that slaughter does not prevent neglect nor does it control the population. It is absurd to suggest that killing horses is going to restore an industry that makes its billions from live horses, especially when slaughter provides only 3 cents of every $100 of revenue.

On behalf of our members, the EWA and ALC call on the President to close this ugly chapter in American history.  The Wild Horse Freedom Federation, likewise, joins in the call to reinstate American dignity and pride.

EWA VP Sinks Wyoming Horse Eater’s Rant

Commentary by Vicki Tobin ~ VP of the Equine Welfare Alliance

America is Sick of Wallis Spew

Click (HERE) to Read “Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis’ Rant

CHICAGO, (EWA) – Thank you, Horseback Magazine, for not being embarrassed to publish the rantings of Sue Wallis. With your large readership, the horse world can see in print just how desperate and off the deep end Wallis has gone.

Why not go all out: Op Ed: Slaughter Bans Would Increase Horse Suffering,  Kill Jobs, Destroy What’s Left of Equine Businesses and Families, Bring on the Apocalypse, Bring Wall Street to Its Knees, Increase Global Warming, Start World War III, Bring on the Bubonic Plague, A Tsunami and the Doppelgangers, will rise.

Wallis starts her propaganda by completely ignoring that the amount of horses being slaughtered is the same as when the domestic plants were in operation. Perish the thought that common sense would prevail and she would realize that anything that is occurring cannot be attributed to the lack of slaughter. There can be no cause and effect if one of the factors has remained constant.

In her zealous quest to discredit HSUS, she has lied again. We didn’t follow HSUS, they followed us. HSUS did not become involved until AFTER the 1949 law in Texas shut down the plants. Their diligent legal team had the closures escalated and thus began HSUS’ involvement. Wallis is so enamored with Rick Berman [coined Dr. Evil by 60 Minutes] and his HumaneWatch that it has clouded the little bit of judgment she has. When will she realize that constantly attacking HSUS is not going to make Americans embrace horse slaughter? The strategy is old and tired and has run its course. HSUS’ support is as strong as ever.

The opposition to horse slaughter by horse owners, exists with or without HSUS. People are capable of forming their own opinions and don’t need HSUS or anyone to tell them what to support or not support. Unlike her small group of followers, we research and then decide whether to support an initiative. We don’t follow anyone blindly. We have disagreed with HSUS and others on issues and to continue to portray equine advocates as lemmings that aren’t capable of formulating an educated opinion is not only a lie but an insult to the horse community. We are not radical anything and all the name calling and lies won’t diminish what we have accomplished without funding or the knowledge and professionals we bring to the table. EWA is a 501c4 and have yet to ask for or collect one penny. We don’t work for HSUS, they don’t fund us and we don’t have Big Ag and the AQHA lining our pockets and donating to legislators to support our bills.

Wallis does not represent horse owners; she represents a foreign meat industry that she is trying to force down the throats of people that want no part of it. If she gets her way, horse owners will be forced to pay for a national passport system so the owners of 2% of the horse population can dump their horses. She is going to force costly regulations down the throats of the entire horse industry. She is going to bring the pollution, stench and violations of every regulation back to local communities that house the plants. She will take away valuable state and local resources to constantly battle with the plants to get them to follow regulations and then spend tens of thousands in court when they refuse to pay their fines. Who is going to pay for all that? The taxpayers, that’s who.

Wallis makes it sound like she wants to open a spa for horses. But those of us that have had the plants in our communities have experienced firsthand that it is nothing but death and destruction. And dare anyone to fine them or try to shut them down. One court battle after the next until they just about bankrupt the communities. And all because Wallis refuses to address the root cause of excess horses. With the decades of killing horses, isn’t it obvious that slaughter does not control the population but encourages the exact opposite? Why on earth would the abusers change their behaviors when the dumping ground is available for their next batch of culls?

She slams educated legislators that can run circles around her and aligns with legislators that don’t understand the law. If they did, they would understand that the courts have already ruled that fees for inspections is a violation of the federal meat inspection act and yet, she and Lummis, keep trying to slip in amendments that are against the law. She ignores food safety laws by writing her own and hoping nobody will notice. The EU and FDA are strengthening food safety laws, not laxing them.

She complains of “all the horse suffering” and then opposes the very legislation that will end it and calls it ill advised.

Take note that she has no data to back any of her rantings. I for one would like to the data on how she arrived at the conclusion that the legislation is universally opposed by every segment of the horse world. Really? One of the largest exporting countries of horse meat, Canada, has proposed their own legislation to end horse slaughter. Italy, one of the largest importers of horse meat is doing the same. Belgium, another large consumer has seen two major grocers remove and refuse to sell US horse meat. She won’t mention that one because it would require her to discuss food safety.

BTW, if there is such overwhelming support, why don’t slaughter proponents let the legislation go to the floor for a vote? Instead, they stall and block them every session. The latest stall tactic was the call for the GAO report that took well over one year to produce and resulted in a report with no data, conflicting recommendations and pages full of anecdotal comments, gossip and conversations that were used to form opinions. How much did that farce of a report cost the American taxpayers?

Only Wallis would praise the abysmal record of regulation enforcement. The transport issues alone put that comment in the “say what?” category. Only Wallis would continue to declare undercover videos fake that were authenticated by the Canadian government. Only Wallis would continue to repeat over and over again that horses are livestock but fail to mention that calling them livestock does not make them food animals. Only Wallis continues to completely ignore food safety and that the meat she wants to feed foreign consumers would be banned for sale by the FDA in the U.S. Only Wallis would exploit Native Americans and try to portray their support as if it represents the Native American population in general when the “Tribes” that support her are a minute percentage of the Native American population.

She doesn’t understand that the horse industry does not produce meat. The horse industry is involved in activities that require live horses. The live horses bring $39 billion in revenue compared to 3 cents on every $100 earned from horse slaughter. Horse slaughter is no more than a rounding error on the horse industry’s balance sheet.

Almost every business in the US has had to downsize. Thousands upon thousands of businesses have shuttered their doors or are a mere shadow of their former market share. None of this has anything to do with the plants closing. The economy tanked after the plants closed and to think that the worst financial crises in US history since the Great Depression wouldn’t impact the horse industry is beyond stupid.

Killing horses is not going to put money in the pockets of consumers so they can afford to buy and care for horses. Killing horses isn’t going to bring American jobs back and would restore only the 30 or so jobs that were held by American citizens between the three plants.

And in case she has forgotten, slaughter is for food production. It is not the place to send excess or unwanted animals of any species. Regulations require that the animal be raised and regulated as a food animal. She refuses to acknowledge the recent EU report that revealed residues of banned substances in US horses and that each horse had falsified paperwork stating the horse was drug free.

She claims pro-horse groups trying to help horses are begging for money but when she constantly begs, it’s not begging. What happened to her Horse Act of 2009? She said she was going to build a plant in Cheyenne, then a mobile plant, then it was in Platte and now it’s in 5 states. She’s a moving target with frequent organization name changes – United Orgs of the Horse with a donate button that went to United Horsemen’s Front so a deduction that shouldn’t have been deductible, became deductible. It was a mutual benefit then a 501c3 that lobbies full time. And then UHF changed to United Horsemen and was in Oregon but then was moving to Wyoming. First she was going to feed the toxic meat to children and prisoners in WY, then she was going to slaughter for zoos and now, multi species. John Holland, at no charge, advised her two years ago that a plant could not be financially supported for zoos and finally the light bulb came on and she says it doesn’t “pencil.”  How much did it cost her taxpayers for that study?

She’s making everyone dizzy.