Horse Slaughter, Wild Horses & Burros; Senate Save – House Kill, What the Heck Does It All Mean?

Source: ASPCA

“Today we share with you a recap of recent legislative events that impact the future health, safety and well being of not only our domestic equines but also our federally protected wild horses and burros. Today’s news round up comes from the ASPCA and is a very readable article that helps to clarify the whirlwind of events and future legislative action relative to the wild ones, we thank the ASPCA for putting this together.

Likewise, we would like to recognize Neda DeMayo and the efforts of RTF for keeping us up to date and focused on the events of the past several weeks…many thanks.

With all that said, you have not heard much, specifically, from Wild Horse Freedom Federation; there is a reason for that so please allow me to briefly explain why.

As I type, every single member of our Legal Staff, Directors, Officers and volunteers at WHFF have their collective nose’s to the grindstone putting the final polishing on a five year project that is ensured to raise eyebrows, shine a light on the truth and give both legislators and the public the tools that they need to further the protection of our wild horses and burros. We stand at the brink.

Stimulate your curiosity? Then stay tuned, remain focused and keep the faith…we will prevail, my friends. Until then, may the Force of the Horse be with you.” ~ R.T.


photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

The ayes have it! That was the Chairman’s call Thursday morning in the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee after it passed the Udall-Graham-Coons-Feinstein-Reed-Collins-Shaheen Amendment to prevent horse slaughter plants from reopening on U.S. soil.

This amendment to the fiscal year 2018 Agriculture Appropriations bill is the Senate’s response to the House Appropriations Committee’s narrow, disappointing failure to pass a similar provision last week (in a 25-27 final count). It also means we have a fighting chance to retain the horse slaughter prohibition in the final law when it passes.

The House and Senate each work on a different version of the annual Appropriations bill. Once both House and Senate have passed their respective bills, they merge them together and decide which provisions to keep and which to toss. The key to our ultimate success for horses is to ask both chambers, particularly leadership, to retain this important prohibition.

For more than a decade, Congress has rejected the idea that the government should spend our tax money subsidizing horse slaughter. Outcry from voters, animal welfare advocates, equine rescues, horse industry groups, veterinarians, farmers and therapy organizations has been extremely compelling for most legislators.

Polling at the federal and state levels has repeatedly and resoundingly demonstrated that Americans view horses as companions, not food. As work and therapy animals, athletes and friends to young riders, horses have served us well. Allowing them to be served to diners overseas is not acceptable.

While this amendment cannot completely prevent all horse slaughter, we have seen encouraging statistics this year showing a dramatic 44% decline in the number of American horses taken over our borders for slaughter. We are on the right track, and once we are sure horse slaughter plants are not allowed to operate on our soil we will direct our energy to passing the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act (H.R. 113). This bill would permanently prevent horse slaughter in this country as well as halt the transport of our horses to Mexico and Canada for this gruesome purpose.

The future of our nation’s wild horses was also considered this week—by the same House committee that opened the door for slaughter last week. Not surprisingly, the committee approved an amendment to allow the killing of thousands of healthy wild mustangs.

The U.S. has protected wild horses and burros from wholesale massacre for decades, but the Trump budget proposal seeks to allow the government to take the lives of thousands of horses held captive in holding pens. Rep. Chris Stewart (R-UT) offered this amendment to remove protections against killing any wild horse, and it passed over the strong objections of many members of the committee. We must speak out against lethal measures like this, and we must prevent the Senate from voting the same way.

Congress takes the month of August off. With this recess looming, we encourage advocates who want to ensure we win these fights to engage their federal legislators back at home in their districts and states. If you want to help wild and domestic horses, please join the ASPCA’s Horse Action Team and we’ll arm you with the information you need.

Today: The Horses and Burros Won a Battle, Tomorrow: The War Rages On

Many thanks to RTF and Neda DeMayo for this update!

“Senate Says NO to Horse Slaughter

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

The Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday approved, on a voice vote, an amendment barring the U.S. Department of Agriculture from hiring horsemeat inspectors – keeping alive the effort to prevent legal horse slaughter from returning to our country.

That’s good news — but there’s still much to be done.

In the days ahead, the Senate Appropriations Committee will take up the interior appropriations bill, which includes the Wild Horse and Burro Program.

Despite the same committee voting against horse slaughter today, recent votes in the House show that we cannot take it for granted that the committee will reject proposals to kill wild horses.

The situation in Washington, D.C., is much too precarious not to keep pushing.

Please call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121 (if you reach a full voicemail, look for district office phone numbers on your senators’ webpages and call them) and tell your senators:

* I oppose any provision that allows the Bureau of Land Management to kill wild horses,

* and I oppose any attempt to remove sale restrictions, opening the door for BLM to sell wild horses to kill buyers.

Proven, humane solutions that would enable the BLM to manage wild horses on the range are available. We do not need to kill national icons.

Return to Freedom appreciates the bipartisan leadership of anti-slaughter amendment sponsor Sen. Tom Udall and co-sponsors Sens. Lindsey Graham, Christopher Coons, Susan Collins, Dianne Feinstein, Jack Reed and Jeanne Shaheen.

Most of all, though, we at RTF and other advocacy groups are grateful for all of you who have called Congress – whether for the first time or the 50th – and encouraged friends and family to do the same. Thank you!

It is true that we are up against powerful interests intent on ridding the West of wild horses.

The opposition has been effective in sowing mistruths about wild horses starving across the range and casting doubt on fertility control vaccines recommended by the National Academy of Sciences and proven safe and effective at our own sanctuary and in many other projects and studies.

Not on our watch, we say.

What wild horses have on their side that can be even more powerful than our opponents’ deep pockets are the voices of the American people, who consistently and overwhelmingly reject slaughter and continue to stand by these living symbols of freedom.

So, keep going. Keep calling. Keep spreading the word.

The future of America’s herds depends on all of us.

Wild Horses & Burros Need Your Voice More Than Ever!

Source: Return to Freedom and endorsed by Wild Horse Freedom Federation

“Yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee passed an amendment that would allow the Bureau of Land Management to kill – shoot – healthy, unadopted wild horses and burros!”

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

As infuriating as that is, as saddening as that is – and it is both — we cannot give up.

We’ll return to the House vote in a moment, but first we need you to make a call on behalf of horses to each of your senators TODAY. That’s because on Thursday, the Senate Appropriations Committee will vote on an amendment to keep a ban on horse slaughter in place.

Please call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121 (if you reach a full voicemail, look for district office phone numbers on your senators’ webpages and call them).

Urge your senators to oppose any provision that:

  • allows horse slaughter,
  • allows the Bureau of Land Management to kill wild horses,
  • or removes sale restrictions, opening the door for BLM to sell wild horses to kill buyers.

Remind your senators that proven humane solutions that would enable the management of wild horses and burros on the range have long existed. We do not need to kill national icons.

All of this can be as confusing as it is upsetting. What’s happening is that we’re fighting provisions on parallel tracks, in the House and Senate, which threaten all horses as well as wild horses and burros. To be clear:

The horse slaughter votes are part of the agricultural funding process. In the absence of a total federal ban on horse slaughter, advocates push each year to bar the U.S. Department of Agriculture from using our tax dollars to hire horsemeat inspectors. On July 12, the House Appropriations Committee narrowly rejected this year’s anti-slaughter amendment. If the bill becomes law without it, slaughter plants could reopen in the United States for the first time since 2007. That affects all kinds of horses, domestic and wild, so now we need the Senate to step up and pass an amendment to make sure that does not happen.

Meanwhile, the wild horse votes are part of the interior funding process. As noted above, the same House Appropriations Committee voted to remove language preventing BLM from killing healthy, unadopted wild horses and burros. The amendment passed on a voice vote, meaning individual votes were not recorded. Again, that means that we need to turn up the pressure and ensure our senators stand up for wild horses in the days ahead.

We’ve written that the situation is as precarious for wild horses as it’s been in Return to Freedom’s 19-year history. We wish we were wrong. Alas, today’s vote was still more proof:

Proof that we must keep calling and writing Congress. Proof that we must keep encouraging our friends and family to do the same. Proof that we must keep writing letters to the editor and sharing information on social media, so that others know what’s happening.

The cost of inaction could mean the needless deaths of thousands – even tens of thousands – of wild horses and burros.

We need to push back against propaganda that blames wild horses (never livestock) for range degradation or that falsely claims scores of wild horses are starving and dying – so many that shooting captured wild horses in government corrals or on long-term pastures is held up as a “humane” alternative. We need to push back at the lie that fertility control has been a failure when BLM has never spent more than 3.88% of its budget on PZP.

We need to demand thoughtful nonpartisan leadership that will work with advocates and scientists to create a proud, long-term plan that provides wild horses with a sustainable future on the range.

The American people still have the power to avert a tragedy in the making, but it will take all of us.

Let’s get after it!

Robert Redford, Ed Harris, Elle Fanning to Congress: Oppose Mass Slaughter of Wild Horses & Burros

Source: EcoWatch.com

“Provisions in the budget…would allow the BLM to kill captured wild horses or sell them without restriction—a change that would enable buyers to purchase wild horses on the cheap and haul them to Canada or Mexico for slaughter.”

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Robert Redford, Ed Harris, Elle Fanning, Ian Somerhalder and countless other equine enthusiasts joined The Humane Society of the United States, Humane Society Legislative Fund, Return to Freedom and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to draw attention to the threat posed to wild horses and burros.

“My family and I stand strongly against horse slaughter and against our government harming our wild horses,” said actor and director Ed Harris. “I am pleading that a humane and common sense solution to the management of our wild horse population be mandated by Congress in keeping with the spirit of the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act.”

Since the implementation of the Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has attempted to maintain stable populations by rounding up and removing thousands of horses and burros from the wild, despite repeated directives that this was leading the program to financial instability.

The Humane Society of the United States, Humane Society Legislative Fund, Return to Freedom and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals have long called for the agency to cease these actions and instead redirect money spent on capturing and holding wild horses toward available solutions, including judicious use of safe, proven fertility control on the range.

The BLM did not listen, and now they want to fix their mistakes by slaughtering wild horses.

Provisions in the budget proposed by the administration would allow the BLM to kill captured wild horses or sell them without restriction—a change that would enable buyers to purchase wild horses on the cheap and haul them to Canada or Mexico for slaughter.

f Congress approves provisions in the president’s budget, then tens of thousands of horses will die.

On Tuesday July 18, the House Committee on Appropriations will vote on the 2018 Interior Appropriations bill. The bill, approved by the House Interior, Environment and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee, maintains protective language, but there is a chance it might be amended in full committee and removed creating a pathway to slaughter.

Wild horse supporters are raising their voices to ensure the protections remain.

Here’s the letter sent to Congress from actors, singers, screenwriters and scientists urging them to oppose wild horse slaughter:

We Stand with America’s Wild Horses and Burros

Our nation’s iconic wild horses are fighting for their lives and we cannot stand by silently and let that happen.

We the undersigned call on Congress to oppose provisions in the president’s 2018 budget that threatens the lives of tens of thousands of wild horses and burros that will be senselessly killed or easily sold to those who would profit from their slaughter.

For decades, we have had available humane solutions, which would keep wild equines on the range and save tax dollars. Sadly, agencies continue to discredit proven alternatives instead of committing to implement them.

The American people have repeatedly and resoundingly called for wild horses and burros—the descendants of the animals who helped build our country, made our own freedom possible and shaped a vital part of our cultural heritage—to live free on the range.

Two years after the passage of the “Wild Horse Annie Act,” which banned the use of vehicles to hunt down wild horses sold for slaughter, the 1961 movie “The Misfits” brought the brutal practices of the mustangers onto the big screen. Marilyn Monroe cried out on behalf of audiences when she pleaded for a roped and struggling wild horse to b set free.

A decade later, in 1971, the overwhelming passage of the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act enshrined in law the historic bond between Americans and wild horses and the policy of Congress “that wild free-roaming horses and burros shall be protected from capture, branding, harassment or death.”

Yet, for all that apparent progress, the lives of tens of thousands of captive wild horses are again at risk.

As American citizens and as voters, we do not accept the use of our tax dollars, which for so many years were invested in the health and safety of the captive wild horses and burros, to now pay for the destruction of these noble animals because they have been deemed inconvenient. It is unnecessary and unconscionable.

The American people would never forgive such a betrayal.

We respectfully urge Congress to take a leadership role by opposing mass euthanasia, slaughter and unrestricted sales and, instead, work together to forge a bipartisan, well-reasoned and humane management plan worthy of these “living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West” by recognizing and prioritizing viable alternatives that do exist.

As a nation, we can and must do better.

Respectfully,

Robert Redford, Actor, Director, Advocate; Governor Bill Richardson, Politician; Wendie Malick, Actress, Advocate; Willie Nelson, Musician, Advocate; Ed Harris, Actor, Director; Amy Madigan, Actress; Lily Harris, Student; Elle Fanning, Actress; Ian Somerhalder, Actor; Carol Burnett, Actress; Ali MacGraw, Actress; Dr. Ross MacPhee Professor and Curator of Mammals, AMNH; Allen Rutberg, PhD, North Grafton, MA.; Bonnie-Jill Laflin, Fox Sports / BBC sportscaster; Priscilla Presley, Actress, Entrepreneur; Noah Wyle, Actor; Sam Elliott, Actor; Katherine Ross, Actress; Robert Gossett, Actor; Claire Forlani, Actress; Dougray Scott, Actor; Debbie Levin, CEO Environmental Media Association; Huey Lewis, Musician; Diane Warren, Songwriter; Scarlet Rivera, Musician; David Midthunder, Lakota Pipe Carrier, Actor; Amber Midthunder, Lakota Dancer, Actress; John Fusco, Writer; David Franzoni, Screenwriter, Geologist; Petrine Day Mitchum, Author, Film Historian; Robert Knott, Writer, Producer, Actor; Rex Linn, Actor; Rachael Worby, Artistic Director MUSE/IQUE; Lance Bass, Producer, Singer; Jill Rappaport, Media host, Advocate; Ed Asner, Actor; Mike Smith, Hall of Fame Jockey; Peri Gilpin, Actress; Laraine Newman, Actress, Comedian; Laura San Giacomo, Actress; Frances Fisher, Actress; Anjelica Huston, Actress; Jessika Van, Actress; Ray Abruzzo, Actor; Dan Lauria, Actor; Victory Tischler-Blue, Producer, Photographer; Tony Stromberg, Photographer; Amber Valletta, Actress; Kimberly Van Der Beek, Producer; Hart Bochner, Actor; Daryl Wein, Writer, Director; Olivia Newton John, Singer, Actress; Mickey Rourke, Actor; Jeff Franklin, Creator / Executive Producer; John Stamos, Actor; Beth Behrs, Actress; and Drew Carey, Comedian / Host

Call to Action: America’s Wild Horses & Burros – No Slaughter, NO WAY!

photo artistry by Carol Walker of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

“Many compliments to the advocates who compiled the raw phone contact information for members of the House Appropriations Committee that meets this Tuesday morning, (TOMORROW), when the fate of America’s wild horses and burros will again be joined. Also included are the Senate members who’ll play a key role in deciding whether the provision allowing the reintroduction of US horse slaughterhouses will be defeated. Calls are the key, immediate and polite. “No slaughter, NO WAY!” is the goal. 

After calling, Tweet, Facebook, Email…do everything you can to get the message out but please remain focused and polite, it is a simple message, “No Slaughter, NO WAY”!  Let’s get after it!!” ~ R.T.


HOUSE APPROP’S FULL COMMITTEE MEMBER LIST:

REPUBLICANS

  • Rodney P. Frelinghuysen, New Jersey,Chairman– 202-225-5034   frelinghuysen.house.gov
  • Harold Rogers, Kentucky202-225-4601   halrogers.house.gov
  • Robert B. Aderholt, Alabama– 202-225-4876   aderholt.house.gov
  • Kay Granger, Texas– 202-225-5071   kaygranger.house.gov
  • Michael K. Simpson, Idaho202-225-5531   simpson.house.gov
  • John Abney Culberson, Texas– 202-225-2571   Culberson.house.gov
  • John R. Carter, Texas– 202-225-3864   carter.house.gov
  • Ken Calvert, California– 202-225-1986   calvert.house.gov
  • Tom Cole, Oklahoma– 202-225-6165   cole.house.gov or Tom.Cole@mail.house.gov
  • Mario Diaz-Balart, Florida– 202-225-4211  MarioDiaz-Balart.house.gov 
  • Charles W. Dent, Pennsylvania– 202-225-6411  dent.house.gov 
  • Tom Graves, Georgia– 202-225-5211  tomgraves.house.gov 
  • Kevin Yoder, Kansas– 202-225-2865  yoder.house.gov 
  • Steve Womack, Arkansas– 202-225-4301  womack.house.gov 
  • Jeff Fortenberry, Nebraska– 202-225-4806  fortenberry.house.gov 
  • Thomas J. Rooney, Florida– 202-225-5792  rooney.gov 
  • Charles J. Fleischmann, Tennessee– 202-225-6411  dent.house.gov 
  • Jaime Herrera Beutler, Washington– 202-225-3536  herrerabeutler.house.gov 
  • David P. Joyce, Ohio– 202-225-5731  joyce.house.gov 
  • David G. Valadao, California– 202-225-4695  valadao.house.gov 
  • Andy Harris, MD, Maryland– 202-225-5311  harris.house.gov 
  • Martha Roby, Alabama– 202-225-2901  roby.house.gov 
  • Mark E. Amodei, Nevada– 202-225-6155  amodei.house.gov 
  • Chris Stewart, Utah– 202-225-9730  stewart.house.gov or chris.stewart@mail.house.gov
  • David Young, Iowa– 202-225-5476  davidyoung.house.gov 
  • Evan H. Jenkins, West Virginia– 202-225-3452  evanjenkins.house.gov 
  • Steven Palazzo, Mississippi– 202-225-5772  palazzo.house.gov 
  • Dan Newhouse, Washington– 202-225-5816  newhouse.house.gov 
  • John R. Moolenaar, Michigan– 202-225-3561  moolenaar.house.gov 
  • Scott Taylor- 202-225-4215    taylor.house.gov (?)

DEMOCRATS

  • Nita M. Lowey, New York– 202-225-6506  lowey.house.gov 
  • Marcy Kaptur, Ohio– 202-225-4146  kaptur.house.gov or rep.kaptur@mail.house.gov
  • Peter J. Visclosky, Indiana– 202-225-2461  viclosky.house.gov 
  • José E. Serrano, New York– 202-225-4361  serrano.house.gov or jserrano@mail.house.gov
  • Rosa L. DeLauro, Connecticut– 202-225-3661  delauro.house.gov 
  • David E. Price, North Carolina– 202-225-1784  price.house.gov 
  • Lucille Roybal-Allard, California– 202-225-3536  herrerabeutler.house.gov 
  • Sanford D. Bishop, Jr., Georgia– 202-225-3631  bishop.house.gov or bishop.email@mail.house.gov
  • Barbara Lee, California– 202-225-2661  lee.house.gov 
  • Betty McCollum, Minnesota– 202-225-6631  mccollum.house.gov 
  • Tim Ryan, Ohio– 202-225-5261  timryan.house.gov 
  • C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger, Maryland– 202-225-3061  dutch.house.gov 
  • Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Florida– 202-225-7931  wassermanschultz.house.gov 
  • Henry Cuellar, Texas– 202-225-1640  cuellar.house.gov 
  • Chellie Pingree, Maine– 202-225-6116  pingree.house.gov or rep.chellie.pingree@mail.house.gov
  • Mike Quigley, Illinois– 202-225-4061  quigley.house.gov 
  • Derek Kilmer, Washington– 202-225-5916  kilmer.house.gov 
  • Matt Cartwright, Pennsylvania– 202-225-5546  cartwright.house.gov 
  • Grace Meng, New York– 202-225-2601  meng.house.gov 
  • Mark Pocan, Wisconsin– 202-225-2906  pocan.house.gov 
  • Katherine M. Clark, Massachusetts– 202-225-2836  katherineclark.house.gov 
  • Pete Aguilar, California– 202-225-3201  aguilar.house.gov 
 
Agriculture FY 2018 budget.  SENATE LIST:
(KEY CONTACTS MARKED IF YOU ARE NOT GOING TO DO ALL)
Thad Cochran
@SenThadCochran
Phone: (202) 224-5054
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Senator-Thad-Cochran
Patrick Leahy
@SenatorLeahy
Phone: (202) 224-4242
https://www.facebook.com/SenatorPatrickLeahy
Mitch McConnell
@McConnellPress
Phone: (202) 224-2541
Fax: (202) 224-2499
https://www.facebook.com/mitchmcconnell
Patty Murray
@PattyMurray
Phone: (202) 224-2621
Fax: (202) 224-0238
https://www.facebook.com/pattymurray
Richard Shelby
@SenShelby
p: (202) 224-5744
https://www.facebook.com/RichardShelby
Dianne Feinstein
@SenFeinstein
Phone: (202) 224-3841
Fax: (202) 228-3954
https://www.facebook.com/SenatorFeinstein
Lamar Alexander
@SenAlexander
Phone: (202) 224-4944
Fax: (202) 228-3398
https://www.facebook.com/senatorlamaralexander
Richard Durbin
@SenatorDurbin
p: 202.224.2152
f: 202.228.0400
https://www.facebook.com/SenatorDurbin
Susan Collins
@SenatorCollins
Main: (202)224-2523
Fax: (202)224-2693
https://www.facebook.com/susancollins
Jack Reed
@SenJackReed
T: (202) 224-4642
F: (202) 224-4680
https://www.facebook.com/SenJackReed
Lisa Murkowski KEY CONTACT
@lisamurkowski
Phone: (202)-224-6665
Fax: (202)-224-5301
https://www.facebook.com/SenLisaMurkowski
Jon Tester
@SenatorTester
Phone: (202) 224-2644
Fax: (202) 224-8594
https://www.facebook.com/senatortester
Lindsey Graham
Office: (202) 224-5972
Fax: (202) 224-3808
https://www.facebook.com/LindseyGrahamSC
Tom Udall KEY CONTACT
@SenatorTomUdall
(202) 224-6621
https://www.facebook.com/senatortomudall
Roy Blunt
@RoyBlunt
Phone: (202) 224-5721
https://www.facebook.com/SenatorBlunt
Jeanne Shaheen
@SenatorShaheen
Ph: (202) 224-2841
https://www.facebook.com/SenatorShaheen
Jerry Moran
@JerryMoran
Phone: (202) 224-6521
Fax: (202) 228-6966
https://www.facebook.com/jerrymoran
Jeff Merkley KEY CONTACT
@SenJeffMerkley
Phone: (202) 224-3753
Fax: (202) 228-3997
https://www.facebook.com/jeffmerkley
John Hoeven
@SenJohnHoeven
P: 202-224-2551
https://www.facebook.com/SenatorJohnHoeven
Christopher Coons
@ChrisCoons
Phone:(202) 224-5042
https://www.facebook.com/senatorchriscoons
John Boozman
@JohnBoozman
Phone: (202) 224-4843
https://www.facebook.com/JohnBoozman
Brian Schatz
@SenBrianSchatz
PHONE: (202) 224-3934
FAX: (202) 228-1153
https://www.facebook.com/SenBrianSchatz
Shelley Moore Capito
@SenCapito
Phone: 202-224-6472
https://www.facebook.com/senshelley
Tammy Baldwin
@SenatorBaldwin
Phone: (202) 224-5653
https://www.facebook.com/senatortammybaldwin
James Lankford
@SenatorLankford
Phone: (202) 224-5754
Fax: (202) 228-1015
https://www.facebook.com/SenatorLankford
Chris Murphy
@SenMurphyOffice & @ChrisMurphyCT
P: (202) 224-4041
F: (202) 224-9750
https://www.facebook.com/ChrisMurphyCT
Steve Daines
@SteveDaines
p: (202) 224-2651
https://www.facebook.com/SteveDainesMT
Joe Manchin
@Sen_JoeManchin
Phone: 304-342-5855
Fax: 304-343-7144
https://www.facebook.com/JoeManchinIII
John Kennedy
@SenJohnKennedy
Phone: (202) 224-4623
Fax: (202) 228-0447
https://www.facebook.com/SenatorJohnKennedy/
Chris Van Hollen
@ChrisVanHollen
Phone (202) 224-4654
Fax: (202) 228-0629
https://www.facebook.com/chrisvanhollen/
Marco Rubio
@SenRubioPress
(202) 224-3041
https://www.facebook.com/SenatorMarcoRubio

Horse Slaughter Vote a Setback, but There’s No Time to Let Up!

Source: Return to Freedom, endorsed by Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Attention now turns immediately to the 2018 Interior Appropriations Bill that could potentially threaten the lives of tens of thousands of America’s wild horses and burros.  

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Return to Freedom Wild Horse Conservation and other advocacy groups on Wednesday expressed disappointment in the House Appropriations Committee’s vote opening the door to horse slaughter, but urged supporters of wild horses and burros to keep the pressure on Congress.

“While today’s vote is disheartening for the overwhelming majority of Americans who oppose horse slaughter, there may be critical votes as soon as next week that could further threaten the lives of tens of thousands of wild horses and burros,” said Neda DeMayo, president of Return to Freedom.

“We must redouble our efforts and stand strong for America’s wild horses.”

The full House Appropriations committee voted 27-25 to reject the Roybal-Allard/Dent horse slaughter defund amendment to the Fiscal Year 2018 Agriculture Appropriations bill. Find out how members of the Appropriations Committee voted by clicking here.

Because there is no permanent federal ban on horse slaughter, advocates push annually for an amendment barring the U.S. Department of Agriculture from hiring horsemeat plans inspectors to effectively keep a ban in place. Advocates may have another chance to turn back slaughter when the Ag Appropriations Bill goes to the full House for approval in the weeks ahead.

Attention now turns immediately to the 2018 Interior Appropriations Bill that could potentially threaten the lives of tens of thousands of America’s wild horses and burros.  

A draft version of the Interior Appropriations Bill OKed by the House Interior Subcommittee, also on Wednesday, does not include provisions called for by the administration that would have allowed the Bureau of Land Management to kill healthy horses or sell captive animals without restriction.

While that’s good news, advocates must not be complacent. An amendment calling for inclusion of those deadly provisions could be offered when the full committee meets again, likely next week, so it’s critical that advocates continue making themselves heard.

TAKE ACTION

  • Call the U.S. Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121, ask to be connected to your representative;
  • Tell staff that your wish to urge your congressperson to oppose any provision that would allow the Bureau of Land Management to kill wild horses or to remove sale restrictions that would open the door for BLM to sell horses and burros to someone who would sell them for slaughter;
  • If your representative is not on the Appropriations Committee, please urge him or her to oppose horse slaughter when the Ag Appropriations Bill goes to the floor, as well as any provisions that could harm wild horses in the Interior Appropriations Bill.
  • Please be sure to mention that humane solutions that would enable the management of wild horses and burros on the range have long been available.

These solutions include not only using safe, proven fertility control but revisiting population targets, based on a fair interpretation of multiple-use land management; providing incentives for ranchers who reduce livestock grazing in wild horse Herd Management Areas; increasing range stewardship, including much-needed water source restoration; and relocating horses, but only if truly necessary.

BLM’s Lust for Wild Horse & Burro Blood is Nothing New

“…Remember this?’ ~ R.T.

June 11, 2009

BLM’s Secret Planning Documents “Alternative Management Options”

Documents obtained by the Freedom of Information Act:

BLM Alternative Management Options Draft Plan + Markup

BLM Implementation Team minutes + markup

BLM Implementation Team minutes + markup

 

https://thecloudfoundation.files.wordpress.com/2009/09/alternativemanagement_optionsblm10_2008_markup.pdf

https://thecloudfoundation.files.wordpress.com/2009/09/blm_implementation_team_minutes_2008_markup.pdf

http://www.thecloudfoundation.org/news/press-releases/archived-press-releases/350-blm-s-secret-planning-documents-alternative-management-options

Documents Reveal BLM Secret Plan to Destroy Wild Horses

Former wild horses imprisoned by the BLM photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Documents obtained from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) via the Freedom of Information Act by a Phoenix-based non-profit, The Conquistador Program, reveal shocking and detailed plans to destroy healthy wild horses in government holding facilities as well as those still remaining in the wild on public lands.

BLM employees as well as a USDA veterinarian held weekly “Implementation Team” meetings beginning in July of 2008 in which they discussed and developed strategies aimed at ridding BLM of thousands of mustangs. In October they completed a 68 page document entitled “Alternative Management Options”. Tactics included in this document are reminiscent of those used to wipe out Native American tribes in the 1800s.

The BLM team created scenarios for killing mustangs using barbiturates, gun shots, or captive bolts. Bodies would be disposed of through rendering, burial or incineration. They discussed killing 1200-2000 wild horses per year. The document states that “the general public would be prohibited from viewing euthanasia.” Additionally, the Team felt that “increased support from public relations and management staff would also be needed to insulate those doing the actual work from the public, media and Congressional scrutiny/criticism.”

“Minutes from these meetings as well as the Draft Plan reveal what amounts to ‘the final solution’ for the American mustang,” states Ginger Kathrens, filmmaker and Volunteer Executive Director of The Cloud Foundation. “Despite a huge outcry from the American public last year regarding BLM plans to kill wild horses in holding, the agency is still pressing forward with a plan to destroy our American mustangs both on and off the range.”

Division Chief of the Wild Horse and Burro Program Don Glenn told The Cloud Foundation that “no decision has been made to move forward on a large scale with this plan, yet.”

BLM meeting minutes speak for themselves. “Security at facilities and at gathers would need to be increased to combat eco-terrorism. Having the people that are willing to put down healthy horses at gather sites could be a problem. Having vets putting down healthy horses at preparation facility[ies] could also be a problem.” Meeting minutes reveal the psychological toll that employees would pay-“have counseling for employees and contractors that have to euthanize the healthy horses because it is very stressful.”

The report created an option in which wild horses of all ages could be sold “without limitation”. In other words, horses could be sold directly to killer buyers in unchecked numbers. The Team admitted that “some wild horses will go to slaughter”.

Team Members formulated ways in which they could circumvent the National Environmental Policy Act, asking “How many (wild horses) could be euthanized during a gather (roundup) without having NEPA?” BLM discussed ways to circumvent the federal carcass disposal law (43 CFR 4730.2). Conversations included how many wild horses could be rendered at the Reno Rendering plant or “disposed of in pits”. The Team concluded that “there will not be large numbers of horses euthanized during gathers or in the field. This is due to state environmental laws.”

Recommendations include the creation of gelding herds, and sterilization of mares to create non-reproductive herds in the wild in place of natural herds. The team recommended changing the sex ratio from the normal 50% males and 50% females to 70% males and 30% females. Then the experimental two-year infertility drug, PZP-22, would be given to all mares that are returned to the wild. Plans call for rounding up the wild horses every two years to re-administer the drug.

“Mares on the drug will cycle monthly and, with the altered sex ratio, the social chaos will be dangerous and on-going,” Kathrens explains. “Any semblance of normal wild horse society will be completely destroyed.”

Kathrens has spent 15 years in the wild documenting mustang behavior for her PBS television documentaries which chronicle the life story of Cloud, the now famous pale palomino stallion she has filmed since birth. “Even Cloud and his little herd in Montana are in serious danger if BLM implements these options,” she continues. “The BLM plans a massive round up in Cloud’s herd beginning August 30, 2009.”

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/07/10/wild-horses-and-burros-need-your-voice-today/

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/07/07/saturday-7817-wild-horse-burro-radio-with-ginger-kathrens-exec-dir-the-cloud-foundation-john-holland-pres-equine-welfare-alliance-kaitlin-kraska-lobbyist-aspca-cory-golden-ad/

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/07/02/are-wild-horses-burros-being-categorized-for-slaughter/

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/06/30/speak-up-for-wild-horses-before-its-too-late/

Wild Horses and Burros Need Your Voice TODAY!

Information supplied by Daniel Cordero Fernández

“We must relentlessly call Congress until they ask for mercy and remove the two offending sections legalizing wild horse killings and enabling horse slaughter in Appropriation Bills…”

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Focus on all the member of the House and Senate appropriations committees but also contact your own Congressman and two Senators. This is because, in all likelihood, the two pro-slaughter sections (one removing the USDA slaughter inspections ban and other adding language to allow BLM to kill and sell for slaughter wild horses in holding) will be passed by the appropriations committees since western pro-slaughter folks have the majority and they have already discussed the matter and have allegedly agreed to pushing this to the full Congress to bring horse slaughter back. In my humble opinion, it is a done deal.

When contacting both your own legislators and the members of the committees, you must ask:

  1. a) Committee members:

– Ask them to vote no on any language allowing the killing of wild horses in holding and / or their sale without limitation, that is, for slaughter or “processing into commercial products” as they like to call it.

– Ask them to oppose any changes to refund horse slaughter inspections by USDA. Ask them to reintroduce the defunding language by means of a private amendment if necessary.

  1. b) Rest of congressmen:

– Ask them to oppose any language allowing the killing of wild horses in holding and/or their sale without limitation and, if necessary, to introduce or support an amendment striking down any language in the appropriations bill allowing the killing and sale without limitation.

– Ask them to support any amendment reintroducing the ban on the use of tax money to fund USDA horse slaughter inspections.

Contact information for all members of Congress, including the ones from a specific committee can be found together in this site:

https://www.contactingcongress .org/

Just select the committee you want contact info from the drop down menu and you are ready to go.

In the case of the agriculture appropriations one, whose text is already made but wasn’t formally introduced, they are aiming at removing Section 767 from the former appropriations bill, which contains the USDA defunding language that prevents horse slaughter plants to open up:

https://www.obpa.usda.gov/34gp exnotes2018.pdf

Go to Page 18 where it reads:

«Section 767: Prohibits inspection of horses for slaughter.

[Sec. 767. None of the funds appropriated or otherwise made available in this Act may be used to pay the salaries or expenses of personnel—(1) to inspect horses under section 3 of the Federal Meat Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 603);

(2) to inspect horses under section 903 of the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (7 U.S.C. 1901 note; Public Law 104–127); or (3) to implement or enforce section 352.19 of title 9, Code of Federal Regulations (or a successor regulation).]

This change deletes the entire section 767. This change is requested in order to permit the Executive Branch to carry out programs in the most efficient manner. » >>> They are deleting the ban entirely.

In the case of the Interior Appropriations Bill there is still no bill text (looks like these welfare ranching cowboys have problems putting two words together) but we have Trump’s budget request where HE VERY CLEARLY REQUESTS WILD HORSES IN HOLDING TO BE KILLED AND TO ALLOW SALES OF WILD HORSES FOR “ALL PURPOSES”, THAT IS, FOR SLAUGHTER:

https://www.doi.gov/…/u…/fy201 8_blm_budget_justification.pdf

Go to page 24 of the .pdf where it reads:

«Wild Horse & Burro Management Shift Management Strategies (-$10,000,000 / -29 FTE)

The WH/B budget is principally consumed by the cost to care for excess animals in off range facilities, […]. Animals for which there is no adoption demand are to be humanely euthanized while others that meet certain criteria are to be sold without limitation. Enacted appropriations bills from 1988 to 2004 and from 2010 to present have prohibited destruction of healthy animals and unlimited sale. […] The BLM must be able to use all of the tools included in the Act to manage this program in a more cost-effective manner, including the ability o conduct sales without limitation. The budget proposes to eliminate appropriations language restricting the BLM from using all of the management options authorized in the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act. An estimated $4.0 million of the $10.0 reduction will be achieved through savings resulting from unrestricted sales. »

The markup session where both bills (agriculture and interior) text will be formally redacted and introduced is NEXT WEDNESDAY July 12th. Make sure you keep calling and writing until these two languages are killed for good. 

https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/06/30/speak-up-for-wild-horses-before-its-too-late/

https://www.contactingcongress.org/

Wild Horses & Burros: Congressman Chris Stewart Violates U.S.C. Title 18 – Conspiracy to Defraud the United States

Press Release: Citizens Against Equine Slaughter

“Congressman Stewart Reports a 41% increase in WH&B population in less than 5 months – IMPOSSIBLE!”

Citizens Against Equine Slaughter has found evidence that the Department of the Interior (DOI), Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and at least one Congressman are guilty of violating 923. 18 U.S.C. § 371—Conspiracy to Defraud the United States:

“The general conspiracy statute, 18 U.S.C. § 371, creates an offense “[i]f two or more persons conspire either to commit any offense against the United States, or to defraud the United States, or any agency thereof in any manner or for any purpose. (emphasis added).”

Congressman Stewart Reports a 41% increase in WH&B population in less than 5 months – IMPOSSIBLE

We find that Chris Stewart did stand in front of a Congressional Appropriations Subcommittee for the Department of the Interior in 2016, addressing the BLM FY 2017 Budget. He did state that the wild horse population, in a majority, on the range were starving, or dying from dehydration. He also stated that there were, at that time, 67,000 wild horses on the range. These claims and population statements were those made by the BLM and the DOI in several media sources, as well as the Budget Justification letter submitted to Congress.

These 2 population statements would suggest that the wild horses went from approximately 47,000 in January 2016 to 67,000 by May of 2016 a 41% increase in less than 5 months? When BLM skews the ratio of stallions to mares on the range, 60 :40, this would mean that with 40 percent of the 47,000 wild horses in January, 18,800 would be mares, and all of them along with approximately 1,500 stallions had to have given birth in 5 months to achieve the 67,000 population boom stated in May of 2016.

1. We found that the August 2016 Environmental Assessment, Adobe Town Wild Horse Movements & Habitat Selection Research Gather, DOI-BLM-WY-D030-2016-0104-EA, page 35, Line 132 and 133, stated the wild horse population on the range was less than in holding (47,403 in holding), according to BLM officials in January of 2016.

https://eplanning.blm.gov/epl-front-office/projects/nepa/59671/97559/117715/Draft_Adobe_Town_Habitat_Movements_Research_EA_9-23-2016.pdf

2. Then in the Interior Appropriations subcommittee mark up, Representative Chris Stewart did state on 25, May 2016 that “There are more than 67,000 of them (horses) now, …” https://stewart.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/rep-chris-stewart-calls-for-bipartisan-solution-to-the-overpopulation-of

Was there even a census between these two numbers showing a 41% increase from Jan to May of the same year (2016)?

While we gathered photos of horses across the 10 states in various HMA’s to prove they were healthy, we found no wild horse advocate group with volunteers on the ground, no wild horse photographer, and even one ranch manager (Stacey Davies, from Roaring Springs Ranch in Oregon) who stated he knew of NO starving horses in Oregon, during a meeting of the Steens Advisory Council. So we asked, but never received any proof of this claim of “tens of thousands of horses that look like this”, made by Representative Stewart, as he held up an old photo of a mare and foal from one instance in 2015 in which human interference with wildlife created an issue where the horses did not act naturally, but instead became emaciated.

Along with these claims of health crisis and population booms, there is always the claim of rangeland destruction, but the question must be asked when photographic, or range-tour evidence is presented, was there ever livestock here? How long ago? And did the time after livestock were removed allow for rest and recovery. There is no wild horse habitat without livestock damage that proves the wild horses are destructive. Even studies such as the WY radio-collaring of wild horses in the Adobe Town Herd Management Area will be biased by the fact that plant life or consumption will be looked at based on the location given by the collars of the horses, however, no other species that eats these plants is simultaneously studied. Therefore, there is no valid way of scientifically determining what ate that plant. Making that aspect of the entire study invalid.

We assert that these statements and misrepresentations of truth are intentional

We assert that these statements and misrepresentations of truth are intentional, and done to convince the public as well as Congressional members to agree to an agenda to push these horses off the range or to genetic extinction. Many herds show signs of inbreeding when the genetic analysis reports are read. Augmenting genetics with the odd mare from an outside herd is not keeping the unique genetics found in different herds or areas viable or separate from the meta population, rather destroying any uniqueness. The augmentation method has also proved unsuccessful in the Kiger/Riddle HMA’s of Oregon. The Oregon genetic analysis reports have shown a steady decline in viability, even with outside mare or stallion introductions.

These intentional lies and mistruths must be exposed, and those perpetrating them must be charged with violation of U.S.C. Title 18, with intent to misinform the U. S. government to reach special interest agendas while misleading the people they are to serve.

Submitted to Congressman Raul Grijalva for the Congressional record, to be shared with the Natural Resources Committee of which he is the Ranking Member, on 7, July 2017.

Media Contact:

Val Cecama-Hogsett
541.315.6650

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1OAMf1oifbF0fw14RNZ5G4e3YryEKdO6aZX9Fu9EFD4A/mobilebasic

Hope Ryden, 87, Revealed the Lives of Wild Horses, Beaver, & Coyotes

Story by by as published on Animals 24-7

“There was quite a mixed gathering awaiting our good friend Hope Ryden when she approached and crossed the Rainbow Bridge the other day.  Animal and human alike were waiting to render a hand across to the afterlife to the woman who had touched and helped so many.  Animal advocacy is going to have turn up the volume in an effort to fill the void that now looms among us after the parting of Hope; may she rest in much earned peace.  God Bless.” ~ R.T.


”Eventually, I found that they would accept me if I first let them know I was there and then quieted down and stayed put. So I started singing to them from a long way off, as I approached the herd.”

Hope Ryden and Ginger Kathrens. Photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

HYANNIS,  Massachusetts––Hope Elaine Ryden,  87,  author and/or photographer for 26 books mostly on wildlife subjects,  and a frequent photo contributor to National Geographic,  died on June 18,  2017 in Hyannis,  Massachusetts from complications of hip surgery.

Born on August 1, 1929, in St. Paul, Minnesota, Hope Ryden was the third of three daughters and a son born to Ernest Edward Ryden and Agnes Ryden, who were respectively minister for the Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in St. Paul and the church organist/pianist.

As well as leading the relatively constrained life of a minister’s daughter, Hope Ryden grew up surrounded by music and journalism.

Sharing their interest in music,  the senior Rydens either wrote or translated from Swedish more than 40 hymns for publication in various Lutheran,  Methodist, Episcopalian and Presbyterian hymnals.  E.E. Ryden was also author of The Story of Our Hymns (1930) and The Story of Christian Hymnody (1959,  and from 1945 to 1958 was secretary of the Commission on a Common Hymnal,  which standardized the hymnal used by the Lutheran Church in America.

E.E. Ryden (1886-1981),  originally from Kansas City,  had been a police reporter for the Kansas City Star before earning his divinity degree from the Augustiana Theological Seminary in 1914.  He continued in journalism as editor of The Lutheran Companion for 27 years and of another periodical,  The Lutheran Outlook,  1938-1942.

Eventually,  in 1960,  E.E. Ryden was among the 34 members of the Committee on Lutheran Unity who brokered a merger of four previously separate Lutheran denominations to form the Lutheran Church of America…(CONTINUED)

Link to the Rest of the Story: http://www.animals24-7.org/2017/07/06/hope-ryden-87-revealed-the-lives-of-wild-horses-beaver-coyotes/#comment-10025