Saturday, December 22, 2007

Humane U.S. Slaughterhouse ban creates new dilemmas

http://www.magicvalley.com/articles/2007/12/20/opinion/letters/127115_18.txt

After 1986 Kentucky Derby contender Ferdinand overcame 18-1 odds to become champion, he was later sold to stud in Japan. Then in 2002, the victor was evidently sent to slaughter, prompting a “from winner to dinner” hearkening slogan, used by the outraged thoroughbred community in their successful campaign to ban the last of U.S. horse slaughterhouses, meant for human consumption.

They still kill U.S. horses for food you know. And a bad hitch is that many of these once beloved creatures are beginning to face horrifically longer transports to Mexico and Canada, which excludes federal jurisdiction, from our monitoring for humane treatment. Deplorably overcrowded trailers and more obfuscated slaughterhouses continuing with questionable sanitary practices are hot concerns. Another problem facing new west ranchers are higher hay prices, which coupled with the slaughterhouse closures has impelled some to abandon their (mostly unbranded) unaffordable horses onto neighboring ranch and public lands.

For those who haven’t heard, it may come as a jolt to the head, that our championed horses now face even murkier final finish lines, before export to lucrative overseas markets, where horsemeat has long been considered a delicacy. Some horsemeat, after beyond-border-butchering makes the long haul back into the U.S. for exotic animal consumption at a controversial zoo near you.

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