HRI
Triple Crown History
Race Tracks
2012 Top Races
2011 Top Races
Track Press Releases
Racing Newcomers
Champions
Thoroughbred Races
Past Bloggers

Marion Altieri

Mare is the visionary Partner, Editor and Radio Host for Alpha Mare Media. Mare is a New York State-licensed Thoroughbred owner. Her membership in NYTHA (New York Thoroughbred Horsewoman's [-men's] Association; NYTB (New York Thoroughbred Breeders; Thoroughbred Women, Ltd. and the Saratoga Thoroughbred Club all inspire, educate and contribute to her depth of knowledge of the breed and the Sport.

Her volunteer interests are all Thoroughbred-related, of course: she should probably get a hobby off the track, but there's just no time or interest. Her mantra is, "If it don't have four legs and a maneit ain't an athlete!"

Most recent entries

Monthly Archives

Syndicate


The Alpha Mare Blog

Rants and raves, one darned opinionated Broad--er, Woman--who loves Thoroughbreds; loves the sport; and freely expresses her exasperation. The Alpha Mare wants to see good things all around for everyone in horse racing, and will use her proverbial pen to start dialogues and perhaps even instigate a revolution or two...

Monday, April 06, 2009


Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer:  the Ag Lobby’s Dirty Little Plan, Revealed


Cattle Grower Network

“It has been shown that horsemeat is low in fat, low in cholesterol and high in protein- overall a better quality of meat than beef. If horse meat were readily available in the U.S., would you be inclined to try it?”

It pays to be on enemy email lists: I received the above link this afternoon, to a website promoting horse slaughter. A faux poll, and several misled people who are contemplating dining on "lowfat" horsemeat. The Ag lobbyists have convinced cattle "growers" that, hmmm, horsemeat might be a yummy thing--I'm thinking that it's a significant part of Ag lobby's push for horse slaughter plants--that if horse slaughter is brought back into the United States, cattle "growers" can get into the biz of "growing" horses specifically for slaughter.

This disgusts me. But I'd rather know what they're up to than not. Ignorance is NOT bliss.


Ah, every now and then, the Good Guys catch a break.

Just when you thought that the battle to keep equines safe from slaughter was a losing effort—an email drops into your Inbox that qualifies as a gift from Heaven. A miracle. Hundred-dollar bills dropping from the sky.

Today was just such a day.

Allow me to elucidate. I am a member of American Horse Publications, a terrific organization that brings together every equine publication, website and freelancer in the country. I cannot stress strongly enough how much I enjoy being a member of AHP.

But today I appreciate it perhaps more than ever before, for I got an email from a website that turned the horse slaughter thing around for me. Refreshed me. Renewed my resolve.

[AHP regularly sends out press releases for its members: some days I get upward of 20 press releases. This is a great service that the organization provides to members. Most days I hear from Missy Wryn, or The Blood-Horse, Thoroughbred Times—the ones I’d expect.]

But, ah, today. Today I was frustrated. Today I had a headache, from beating my brains against a post. I’ve been trying for several days to write a follow-up to Montana’s Big, Bloody Sky, but have been stumped. Not that I’ve run out of words—I’ll be yammering on my way to the grave. I’ve run out of patience with the system, a system that allows Governors to play footsie with Ag lobbyists and to disguise death sentences for horses as concern for their welfare.

You see, Friday was a day of jubilation for we anti-slaughter people. Well, it was a minute of jubilation.
We’d heard, first, that Montana’s Governor Brian Schweitzer had vetoed the horse slaughter bill.

Friends and colleagues emailed me to send up the first flares. Start the bonfire, we’re havin’ a weenie roast!

That ecstasy lasted about three seconds. I read Schweitzer’s letter to The Butcher (Ed Butcher, that is: the most appropriately-named politician in America.) The letter of “veto” was really a letter filled with amendments. IF the bill is amended in ways that Governor Schweitzer find to be appropriate—he will sign the bill into law.

And the reasons for his amendments are to write in protections for those who would build the slaughterhouses—NOT because he’s concerned about the horses’ welfare. Sure, his letter of amendment is filled with language that sounds like he’s concerned for equine welfare—all the “unwanted horses” ya-ya.

But the bottom line of it is that he’ll be delighted to sign the bill into law, as long as the amendments are written in—and those magnanimous Belgians are protected. Schweitzer wants to make sure that, once the slaughterhouse is built in Montana—no one can step up to the plate (or courthouse) and close it down.

So I’ve spent several days trying to write about something that is on the surface so vague that anti-slaughter folks were tempted to think we’d won. But knowing that we’ve not won, the battle continues, and—if anything—is more frustrating than ever. At this point, it’s out of our hands. Phone calls to Schweitzer’s office will not change a thing. Now we sit and wait to see if/when the Montana State Legislature tosses it back to him.

If they do, he’ll sign it.

If he signs it, Montana license plates can read, “The Slaughter State.”

So today I felt stumped. Defeated. Not sure what to write.

Now I know. Today we were given a gift, that of insider knowledge. This is a valuable tool—knowledge. The Truth shall set you free. The light of Truth, shining in the darkness—can turn it all around for the horses.

We have the ammo we need now: the email I received via AHP today carried the subject line, “Would You Eat Horse Meat?”

I turned on my mental heel. They had my attention. I had to peek inside, and see behind the curtain.

This email was from a website that identified itself as http://www.CheyenneOutlaw.com.

I’d never heard of them before. I thought it might be a group of cowboys, perhaps a newsletter of cowboy poets.

Not quite. Cheyenne Outlaw Ranch is—you guessed it—a cattle ranch in Wyoming.

Their mission is to “grow” and sell—beef.

Why, you might ask yourself, would they wish to contact those of us who work in publishing in equine industries? Hmmmmm…tap yourself on the chin. Think about this a minute.

It all became wildly clear the minute I read the email: supposedly, The Cattle Grower Network had conducted a poll. Uh, yeah. And in that poll, they asked if readers would eat horsemeat if it were available to them.

Uh-huh. A rigged poll. People who are members of Cattle Grower Network, answering a question that, on its surface, seems simple.

Disgusting, but simple.

The underlying implication is enormous.

Finally--the Truth behind the push for horse slaughter plants.

The Truth, that those who are proponents are no more concerned about “unwanted horses” than a bald man is about unwanted hair.

The Truth is that the Ag lobby is working with the “cattle growers” not only to re-introduce horse slaughter into the United States—the underlying reason for doing so is that the next step after reintroduction is to create a market for horsemeat IN the United States.

The beef industry has been hurting lately. Too many people actually concerned about silly things like, oh, I don’t know—cholesterol. Fat. Colon cancer.

What, oh, what, can a “cattle grower” whose profit margin is flagging do? Hmmm…got land. Got grass. Got fields fenced in. Beef, fatty. HORSE…not so fat.

Horsemeat = a marketing strategy that could save the necks of the ranchers who’ve invested millions of dollars into an industry that is threatened by a growing American concern for health.

Read the link above, to the “poll” and those who agree with the results of the poll—that, supposedly, horsemeat just may be an acceptable addition to the American diet. Read the words, then let them set in.

Realize that this is a well-calculated campaign. This is NOT random people who happen to think that horse slaughter is a good thing.

This, my friends, is every bit as insidious a campaign as the tobacco industry creating chocolate cigarettes for children.

This campaign was hatched in the boardrooms of The Beef Council. This plan is being executed by the Ag lobbyists and the ranchers. This, they believe, will be the plan that saves the ranchers.

All this time, we anti-slaughter people thought they were merely executing the “slippery slope” argument, that, if horse slaughter is taboo in America—they’ll come for the beef industry next.

That passive-aggressive approach—that’s what we thought they were up to.

But today’s email revealed the Truth—Hallelujah, the Truth will set the horses free.

The real motivation of the Ag lobby and the Beef People is not to prevent beef slaughter from being outlawed—for that would never happen. The real motivation is to open wide the door to horse slaughter so that RANCHING HORSES for meat will not only become acceptable—it will become an exciting, viable new market for the cattle ranchers. “Branching out,” as it were. Creating a new market, and giving it the old hard-sell.

Once horse slaughter plants are put in Montana and the Dakotas—it’s all downhill from there. They think that we anti-slaughter people will just give up, and go away with a whimper. That we’ll shrug our withers, and give in.

No doubt they even aspire to converting Willie Nelson: their clever marketing wonks envision Willie as a potential ally, the face of The American Horsemeat Council. Once that door to slaughter is flung wide-open—the possibilities are endless.

I am not arguing in slippery slope here, friends. All you need do is read this nonsense from the cattle “growers,” this email they sent to their allies, to see through their transparent motive.

If we open that door—if we let Governor Schweitzer amend so vile a bill as to make it palatable, and pass it into law—then the Ag lobby and beef “growers” can institute Phase II: the cultural and governmental acceptance of horse ranches.

If you don’t want to see billboards for “Secretariat: the Other Red Meat”—you must work with us. You don’t need my vivid imagination to see that this is the real motivation for the push for slaughter: all you need is eyes to read; a brain to comprehend and a heart to give a damn.

Ag lobby—we are finally on to you. We’ve got you in our scopes. You’re goin’ down. No Alydar Alpo for me—and no Filly Filet at Peter Luger’s.

Not now. Not ever.

Written by Marion (Mare) Altieri

Write/Read Comments (30)

Share

 
 

Page 1 of 1 pages