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Horse Carriages in New York City

Story ID:10833
Written by:Suzana Margaret Megles (bio, contact, other stories)
Story type:Musings, Essays and Such
Location:New York City New York usa
Year:2016
Person:various
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Today I wrote a little letter to the New York Times editors re their defense of
continuing the horse drawn carriage trade in New York City. Here is my very
simple and succinct letter:

To the Editors:

I have only one question for those editors who see nothing wrong with continuing
the horse drawn carriage trade in New York City. Would it be all right if you were one
of the long suffering horses who have to pull carriages on the much trafficked New
York City streets in all kinds of weather? Of course, New York can have harsh winter
snowy days and brutally hot summer ones. If your answer is yes, then you may well
have a legitimate crusade. If your answer is no-then obviously, your editorial in defense
of these horse drawn carriages is ill-conceived and has no merits. I and others care
about horse suffering, and we believe they suffer in this trade which should be
discontinued.

Sometimes we are criticized for commiserating with the animal condition, but why
should they be excluded from our concern and compassion? God made us, the animals
and the earth and pronounced all of it good. Because of this -concern should be given to
all the parts of His creation.

This issue makes me think of other cruel animal-related issues which some defend as well.
Of course, bull fighting comes to mind where it is defended in countries like Spain and
Mexico as well as in some other countries. I also put greyhound racing and horse fighting
in the Philippines in this same category. Dog eating in China, S.Korea, and Thailand is a
horror which should be stopped. Rodeos in the U.S. leave traumatized and bleeding animals
backstage after the rodeo is over.

I daily receive e-mails about animal cruelty in all parts of the world and have been aware
of animal suffering since 1975 -the first year of living with my first puppy Peaches – the
inspiration of my concern for animal suffering.

For those of us who care about animals, we try to do what we can to alleviate their suffering,
and for far too long it seems to me that their well being has been of little importance to people
generally. I am especially saddened that people who believe in God and the story of Creation
seem to generally not be too concerned about animal suffering. But thank God – there are people
who do care and there are organizations which do all they can to help stop animal cruelty
wherever it is found.

There are people who will criticize me and others who have this compassionate apostolate –telling
us that we should be more concerned with human suffering. I truly believe that we who care
about animal suffering also care about human suffering. Sadly I feel the reverse is not always
true.

God bless Mayor DeBlasio who is trying to address this problem and urging the discontinuance
of this unnecessary trade. Naturally, he is meeting with opposition from those in the trade and
for those who feel this is a legitimate part of New York City history. Yes, it has been romantically
portrayed in some movies and in real life. And yes, perhaps at one time it was even a necessary
means of transportation, but today we can bring relief to these poor horses if we have but the will
and the heart to do so.