An Animal Rights-Protection-Abolitionist Organization
I've always thought of horse-drawn carriages the way I think about greyhound racing or fur: Most people are against them, so why are they still around? Greyhound racing is dying, for sure, but not because people are necessarily against it. It's dying because of low attendance at a venue that's relatively expensive to maintain. Massachusetts is probably an exception, as voters banned racing while tracks were still in operation, so that's a message about how they feel about dog racing that turned into a ban.
The Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages calls itself "an animal rights-protection-abolitionist organization," which I find interesting. I'm sure a lot went into that and I wonder why it is defined that way. Perhaps because it might appeal to almost everyone? What do you think about the description? Regardless, they are joining Friends of Animals and Hearts for Animals on
Saturday December 5
at Central Park South (N/W corner) @5th Avenue, to
"observe the international day of recognition for carriage and cart horses by bringing attention to the conditions under which the NYC carriage horses live and work."
(Horses Without Carriages International does a great job of explaining and showing the injustices of the horse-drawn carriage industry around the world.)
The Coalition seeks a ban–not a phase out–and not the regulation of horse-drawn carriages in NYC (the proposed phase out would be over a three-year period during which "'green' replica classic cars" would be introduced). It wants a complete ban prior to the introduction of any other replacement business. An outright ban better for the horses because it wouldn't be at all influenced by or contingent upon the success of a new business.
"The well being of the horses should be the ideal of every organization whose mandate is to put animal protection ideals first – especially when they ask for donations based on that mandate. It is a conflict of interest for animal protection organizations to advocate for the drivers' jobs at the expense of the horses and they lose their moral authority by confusing those priorities.
. . .
We call upon the organizations that developed this proposal to go back to the drawing board and separate the two concepts – carriage horse ban — and — vintage cars. Figure out a way to provide assistance to the drivers in the way of jobs or money if that is your calling, while all of us work to see that Intro 658A – a true animal protection bill – gets passed. But do not allow the ban of the carriage horses to be dependent on a new business that may or may not be successful. It is too risky to sacrifice the horses this way and would be doing them a grave injustice."
Intro 658A will be reintroduced next year. Let's make 2010 the year carriage horses are emancipated in NYC!