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In a message dated 3/14/00 11:22:59 AM Pacific Standard Time, 

<< But Lif, you voted for these people making the laws. They've concluded 
 tree huggers are too dumb to walk to the mailbox and back without 
 governmental supervision. >>

Actually, the CA anti-slaughter law was passed by initiative, and voted in by 
an urban electorate that had no clue what would really happen in its 
wake--NOT by the elected legislators.  So can't blame any of the voters here 
except those who voted YES directly on the initiative.  

What happens in the wake of such legislation is that a) horses suffer 
needlessly when people with minimal funds (or those unwilling to pay) allow 
horses to suffer until they die instead of sending them to the canner, and b) 
horses who once went directly to slaughter are now bought by "feed lot" 
buyers who eventually sell the horses out of state through various ruses and 
they still go to slaughter, but only after being bounced around from place to 
place, exposed to various dangers and strange horses, and then take a LONG 
truck ride through half a dozen states instead of a short one directly from 
the sale to the slaughter plant.  So in many cases, horse suffering INCREASES 
instead of decreases.  So much for the warm fuzzies, but then the bleeding 
hearts that voted in this measure don't want to believe such things.

The other aspect is that in crowded areas such as southern CA, there is no 
room to bury horses, so money must be spent not only for euthanasia but also 
for disposal.  With the density of the horse population, burial could well 
constitute an environmental risk.  (But then the feely-good people never do 
stop to think if one initiative has aspects that would interfere with another 
initiative...)  And something that is not often mentioned is the 
environmental risk to birds when horses are euthanized with standard chemical 
protocols and are not immediately disposed of or buried--drugs commonly used 
for euthanasia are deadly to birds (especially raptors, which most of the 
same folks who voted YES likely feel are endangered and must not be damaged 
in any way)--but once again, no one stopped to bother with such trivial facts 
before rushing to the ballot box on this one.

I'm no great fan of horse slaughter, but at least in the days when there were 
small, relatively local plants, it served a need while putting the horse 
through a minimum of trauma.  Thanks to politics-as-usual, we no longer have 
that option in most places--so much for common sense.  And while I'm not fond 
of some of the stuff done in the name of Endangered Species, I don't see much 
point in poisoning eagles, either, if the rendering truck is a day late.


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