***THIS POST IS THE REASON WE NEED THE NEW USDA AMENDMENTS ADDED TO THE HPA.***
I found out about a horse that was ridden at The Cornersville Lions Club Show over the weekend. The class is the 2 Year Old Stallions class, which took place on Friday, July 8th, 2011. It was a SHOW affiliated show.
This horse is quite possibly one of the worst examples of a Big Lick Tennessee Walking Horse I have ever seen. Folks, while this is disturbing, WE ALL NEED TO WATCH THIS. You need to see the measures that some people go to just to win a blue ribbon at a small horse show.
VIDEO REMOVED BY REQUEST.
The horses start coming in at about 1 minute, 48 seconds. The offending rider enters at 2 minutes, 34 seconds. You can't miss him--he's the hunched over, spurring, bit pulling, whipping, Justin Harris, riding the sorrel with the flaxen mane and tail and two hind socks. This poor animal is ONLY 2 YEARS OLD. The number is 22. The worst part? This horse's name is Compliant.
Harris, who also "trained" this horse, is fresh off a one year suspension for bilateral soring of a horse, which ended 5/9/2011. He has seven HPA violations under his belt for unilateral and bilateral sore, the scar rule, and for violating his own suspension.
Many people in the industry are upset that this horse was shown. However, it doesn't seem that anyone is doing anything about it. Plus, if anyone who is complaining would take the law seriously, then perhaps Harris would never have put this horse in the ring in the first place. Harris could have been stopped long ago, but no one would take the stand and do it.
The Judge was Jamie Hankins. People are saying there were other horses that should have been excused from the Cornersville show as well, and he didn't excuse any of them. And to wit, Hankins has two of his own HPA violations, and he is also slated to be a judge at the Celebration. Will wonders never cease?
Hankins: YOU SHOULD HAVE EXCUSED THIS HORSE. This is one of the worst things I've ever seen. I've seen some sore horses in my time, but this takes the cake as far as pain and manipulation are concerned. I don't know if Compliant was intentionally sored or not, but even if he wasn't, you cannot tell me he's not in pain.
And guess what? I found out that the DQP at this show also has a horse in training at this trainer's barn. What a nice conflict of interest, which is common in this industry. So of course he let the horse in the ring.
But this is what we really need to focus on: EVERYONE is at fault for this at this show. First, the rider/trainer for obvious reasons. Second, the DQP for allowing this horse in. Third, the judge for not excusing the horse and not allowing him to show at the rest of the show. Fourth, the audience, for sitting on their asses and not doing anything but commenting on it.
The comments in the video are absolutely right: HOW did this horse get into this class? This is absolutely ridiculous. And yes, this IS the reason the industry are in trouble--they continue to allow this garbage to go on.
This is why we need to get your comments in on the USDA dockets. WE NEED TO STOP SEEING THIS, PERIOD. Some people think this isn't a big deal--that this only happens at every few shows. But since there are nearly 1000 TWH shows every year, then this happening at every few shows is a really big deal. We need to see this end, and we need to see it end now. One bad image horse is one bad image too many!