U.S. horse slaughtering okay'd by Obama, Congress

Mechele R. Dillard's picture

Horse slaughter houses will again be opening in the United States, but the outcry from activists may not come as loudly as one would expect.

Horse slaughtering is again on the table in the United States.

Funding for inspection of horse slaughter houses was ended in 2006, which basically shut them down. This was done with the idea that more horse rescues would follow. However, that is unfortunately not what happened.

Patty Livingston, a horse rescuer in Bethlehem, GA, and president of the Georgia Equine Rescue League, spoke with 11Alive News in Atlanta about the controversial move of putting horse slaughterhouses back in business in the United States, supported by Congress and President Obama. The bill was sent to the president this month; he signed it on Nov. 18, allowing the slaughterhouses to get back to business in the U.S.

But, Livingston indicated that, horrible as it seems, it is the best of the options out there right now. "In 2006 I actually voted to shut them down, not knowing what that was going to mean for our horses," she said. The collapse of the economy led to more horse abuse, Livingston indicated, and abandonment has increased—as much as 60 percent in Colorado, she said, leading to rescue groups becoming overwhelmed and unable to deal with the problem of abandoned and abused horses in the United States.

Slaughter houses in Canada and Mexico have continued to demand horse meat since the U.S. slaughter houses shut down five years ago. So, many old and abandoned horses have been taken across the borders for slaughter—under less humane conditions, Congressman Jack Kingston (R-Savannah) pointed out to 11Alive News.

"In those facilities, particularly in Mexico, the USDA has no jurisdiction and we don't know what kind of facilities they are, if the horses are treated humanely," Rep. Kingston said.

Rep. Kingston did vote to allow horse slaughter houses to reopen, as did various Congressmen from both sides of the political aisle, allowing the bill to be signed by President Obama.

Surprisingly, some horse rescuers, like Livingston, do support the move as the lesser of the evils.

"The cruelty that they endure now is ten times worse than they ever endured when we had slaughter houses in this country," Livingston explained to 11Alive News.

There are over 9 million horses in the United States today; just over one percent, approximately 125,000 are slaughtered each year.

Image: Wikimedia Commons

Comments

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
And, as I believe I said, horses and pigs are not in the list of things that one may eat ... i.e. they are unclean ... if I did not make this clear, thank you for doing so ... :)

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
who are you to define GOD and RELIGION. and you're right, your family probably won't go hungry to pay for starving horses...you just don't sound to me like that kind of person. what's it to matter anyway, your taxes are actually paying for the operation of slaughter houses.

Submitted by NC (not verified) on
Pink, two points in response to your post . 3,700/day or 1.37 million babies were slaughtered last year in the United States. Some of these babies killed were because of genetic defects, some were unwanted, some were the wrong sex...all were aborted. Their lifeless bodies thrown in the dumpster behind the "human slaughter houses". People are not horses and cannot be categorized as such. I have met some people that look like a horse, and I have met some that act like an ass. I have a good friend that rides a mule and neither of them look like the other.

Submitted by Pink (not verified) on
NC...You want to talk abortion? Let's talk!!!!! But go to the correct forum. Don't cloud this mission with something that has NOTHING to do with these innocent horses. Nice deflection though. Way to try and twist my words. No go! You can't just DISMISS an animal because it cuts into your profits!!! How pathetic!!!! I have never owned a horse, but I am a mother of three, so if you want to talk abortion and children....let's talk!!!! Don't make it sound like some were killed because they were genetic defects. They were ALL killed because they were unwanted......period. Because people like YOU said "let's just take the perfect ones and KILL the rest". Either way...this is TOTALLY the wrong forum to discuss abortion.....and you are barking up the wrong tree. Humans are first and foremost; don't make it sound as if I said animals are equal to humans. Again...nice twist on my words, but a pathetic attempt to prove your point. I didn't say people are horses. Don't put words in my mouth. Just because a being is not a human does NOT give you the right to slaughter it and treat it with total disregard. SHAME on you. A horse, whether it have a beautiful coat and strong bloodline, or spotted, with a "trash" bloodline, as you so referred, is God's amazing creature....period. Would you slaughter your dog just because he urinates when he gets excited??? You people who are FOR this bill obviously have MONEY invested in breeding and are only looking out for you best FINANCIAL interest. What else could make you be so cruel and disgusting????

Submitted by Renee (not verified) on
Tell it !! I agree with you 100 % !!

Submitted by Globemstr3 (not verified) on
This is absolutely disgusting. How are government and elected leaders can support something like this is "Third Worldish" What are we turning into as a country.

Submitted by NC (not verified) on
Pink...you are correct, I have money invested in breeding. I have a stallion that is the son of Alen's Avenger. He has never been ridden and serves one purpose on our farm. We have two mares that we breed (when we breed) both from champion bloodlines (Spotted Alen, and Spotted Alen Again). In addition, we have two mares that we ride (World Grand Champions) a gelding, two mares, and a filly that will be sold. We love our baby horses are looking forward to letting the stallion do what he does best and the brood mares do what they do best. There will be no more babies until the herd of nine becomes six or seven. My "pleasure" in the slaughter houses reopening does have a financial backing. It also has a humanitarian backing. I've seen too many horses on shows such as Animal Cops - Houston that are crippled, malnourished and suffering. Raising horses. selling horses, and giving riding lessons helps offset the feed bill and the taxes required for us to keep out little piece of heaven here in Pilot Mountain, N.C. To call me "cruel and disgusting" is unfounded. I'll be happy to continue this conversation, but the name calling will have to cease.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Ok...soooooooo killing in that manner is ok...and you have watched tv?? Have you been to the humanitarian slaughter houses??? I was in Nebraska, driving and suddenly the stench of something ungodly permeated the air. The closer I got to the source, oh it was horrible. Guess what it was...a slaughter house for cattle...out away from all public view..hundreds of cattle knee deep in mud...waiting...it was awful so save me from your "humanitarian" retorect...you are in la la land and you should know better

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Ok...soooooooo killing in that manner is ok...and you have watched tv?? Have you been to the humanitarian slaughter houses??? I was in Nebraska, driving and suddenly the stench of something ungodly permeated the air. The closer I got to the source, oh it was horrible. Guess what it was...a slaughter house for cattle...out away from all public view..hundreds of cattle knee deep in mud...waiting...it was awful so save me from your "humanitarian" retorect...you are in la la land and you should know better

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Ok...soooooooo killing in that manner is ok...and you have watched tv?? Have you been to the humanitarian slaughter houses??? I was in Nebraska, driving and suddenly the stench of something ungodly permeated the air. The closer I got to the source, oh it was horrible. Guess what it was...a slaughter house for cattle...out away from all public view..hundreds of cattle knee deep in mud...waiting...it was awful so save me from your "humanitarian" retorect...you are in la la land and you should know better

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