Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Horse-drawn carriage rides: a bad idea

The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their right names,
the philosopher says.

Horse-drawn carriages in NYC? In a word, inhumane. It is time for a ban.

Perhaps you found this blog by accident. If so, please consider that a proposed FULL BAN on horse-drawn carriages in New York City is supported by a diverse coalition of groups and individuals. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals supports this legislation calling for a full ban, as does the Humane Society of the United States, Friends of Animals, and dozens of other organizations. The issue is not a frivolous one, or motivated by hatred. New York City's horse-drawn carriage industry is inhumane and cannot be made safer--a dire circumstance that the ASPCA has fully acknowledged. Horse-drawn carriages in New York City traffic pose risks to the horses as well as the public safety. The industry problems can't be "fixed." An environmentally friendly, economically feasible alternative business is proposed.

New Yorkers and visitors would do well to reflect on the words of Henry Bergh, who decried all manner of animal mistreatment and in 1866 founded the ASPCA. “This is a matter purely of conscience,” Bergh concluded, an observation prompted in part by the plight of horses at that time. “It has no perplexing side issues."

True now as it was then. In 2008, a ban on horse-drawn carriages is the right thing to do.

Please let compassion inform your summer travel decisions.

And, as a friend of mine likes to say, "Take a walk. It's good for you."

ACTION ALERT: Please support the ban on horse-drawn carriages in New York City. Make it clear to your City Council member that you support the ban (Intro. 658) and ask him or her to do the same. Also take a moment to call the office of Council Speaker Christine Quinn, who is blocking this humane legislation--as she has done so far with all animal-friendly legislation.
Non-New York City residents: Please contact the mayor's office to say that you support a full ban on horse-drawn carriages.
Phone: 212-NEW-YORK (outside NYC)
Mailing Address:
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg
City Hall
New York, NY 10007

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