"Today, Tennessee Walking Horses are known throughout the industry
as the breed that shows abused and tortured horses."

~ Jim Heird, Ph.D., Do Right By The Horse, February 2010

"If you have men who will exclude any of God's creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity,
you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men."

~ St. Francis of Assisi

Thursday, November 3, 2011

NEWS and ARTICLES - New TWHBEA Board Member, Good Article from 2009, and USDA & Celebration Meeting

I've received three big stories in the past few days.  Here's a post combining all three.

NEWS - Keith Dane Now a TWHBEA Board Member

This is FANTASTIC news!  Keith Dane, the Director of Equine Protection from the HSUS, has been elected as the Board Director for the State of Maryland!  Click here for the election results on TWHBEA's website.  In the TWHBEA letter to its members, it seems that only 21% of the membership voted.  Well, it seems that the part of the membership that voted for Dane was the right part!  I believe that this is going to help save the horse tremendously.  And THANK YOU to all of you who voted for Dane!  I believe that you are are going to help finally start making a REAL difference for the horse!

ARTICLE - "Spotlight on abusive horse training" from Examiner.com

This article, posted at this link, was published on October 2, 2009.  While it was written some time ago, there is an interesting point made concerning a video of the 2009 WGC winner, Watch It Now.

Video - Tortured Tennessee Walking Horse Watch It Now wins obscene amounts of prize money for his cruel trainer and greedy owners.

According to the HSUS "The 2009 World Grand Champion Tennessee Walking Horse is trained by past Horse Protection Act violator Jimmy McConnell, and owned by William B. Johnson, who only recently settled a previous HPA case involving trainer Billy Gray."

Let's also point out that McConnell was one of the complainers when his horse was found sore at this year's Celebration, and the Johnson's are currently on suspension for one year for the abuse they've caused horses at Waterfall Farms.  Be sure to boycott your local Waffle House and Ritz-Carlton hotel--since the owner is now a known animal abuser, we need to be sure the public knows about it as well and put our money where our mouths are!

So, the word is out there.  Let's be sure to keep it going!

NEWS and ARTICLE - USDA and SHOW/Celebration Meeting

From the Walking Horse Report:

Friday, October 28, 2011

The Celebration® Board of Directors met Thursday, October 20,2011 with Dr. Chester Gipson, Deputy Administrator for USDA APHIS at the Celebration grounds in Shelbyville.  The meeting was a result of a commitment  from Dr. Gipson to meet with not only the industry HIOs but also Executive Committees and Board of Directors who represent stakeholders in the Walking Horse Industry.

Dr. Gipson said “The driving force behind these scheduled meetings is to discuss both challenges and opportunites that lie ahead for the industry.  The USDA and subsequently the Walking Horse Industry cannot be successful without the entire support of both organizations working for common goals.”  Dr. Doyle Meadows, CEO of The Celebration® said “We appreciate Dr. Gipson and his position with USDA and look forward to working with him as we begin our move toward the 2012 show season.”

This worries me somewhat.  From what I understand, no one was told about this until now, and I HATE these behind the scenes meetings.  What I would normally do is encourage everyone to write to Dr. Gipson and tell him to not change his stance on ending soring and to PLEASE enforce the law.  However, we didn't get that opportunity.  Hopefully we will hear soon what the results of the meeting were.  Let's pray Gipson is not falling into the hands of their greed or being threatened by them and is going to force them to TRULY end soring!

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