DawnWatch: NY Times op-ed "We eat horses, don’t we?" 3/5/07

March 5th, 2007 10:17 pm by Kelly Garbato

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch – news [at] dawnwatch.com
Date: Mar 5, 2007 9:57 PM
Subject: DawnWatch: NY Times op-ed “We eat horses, don’t we?” 3/5/07

The Monday, March 5, New York Times includes an op-ed by Christa Weil, author of “Fierce Food: The Intrepid Diner’s Guide to the Unusual, Exotic and Downright Bizarre.” The op-ed is headed, “We Eat Horses, Don’t We?.”

Weil opens:

“Recently, an official for American Horse Defense Fund, which is a fervent supporter of bills now in the United States Congress that would ban slaughtering horses for meat, declared that “the foreign-owned slaughter industry needs to understand that Americans will never view horses as dinner.”

“It’s a ringing statement, but it’s not an entirely accurate one. As much public support as the anti-slaughter bills have and as highly as we regard this animal as a companion, co-worker and patriotic symbol, Americans have made periodic forays into horse country, hungry for an alternative red meat.

Weil notes that Americans ate horsemeat when beef and pork were scarce during World War II, that one store in Oregon sold it during the recession in 1973, and that “Until the late 1970s, the Harvard Faculty Club served horse steaks as a regular menu item.”

She writes,

“It’s easy to denounce the inhumane transport and slaughter of horses, even before taking into account the significant environmental cost of transporting 100,000 carcasses and animals a year thousands of miles to overseas markets.

“But the fate of less charismatic food animals is also a brutal business. Last year, 150 pigs being shipped from Ohio to a Texas slaughterhouse died after spending up to 72 hours in a truck with no water, food or relief from 95 degree heat. The dispatch of male chicks on an egg farm can be flat-out horrific. The ill treatment of slaughter-bound horses is bad, but it would be worse still if it made us pay less attention to the undue suffering of other food animals.”

You’ll find the whole piece on line here.

It opens the door for letters to the editor about our treatment of other species.

The New York Times takes letters at letters [at] nytimes.com.

Always include your full name, address, and daytime phone number when sending a letter to the editor. Remember that shorter letters are more likely to be published. And please be sure not to use any comments or phrases from alerts or sample letters. Editors are looking for original responses from their readers.

Yours and the animals’,
Karen Dawn

(DawnWatch is an animal advocacy media watch that looks at animal issues in the media and facilitates one-click responses to the relevant media outlets. You can learn more about it, and sign up for alerts at http://www.DawnWatch.com. You may forward or reprint DawnWatch alerts if you do so unedited — leave DawnWatch in the title and include this parenthesized tag line. If somebody forwards DawnWatch alerts to you, which you enjoy, please help the list grow by signing up. It is free.)

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