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Horse people working for a better future for the horse industry.

Monday June 24, 2013
Stay Strong and Stay the Coursehorse

Last week was a legislative roller coaster ride for the horse industry. While we were successful in preventing an amendment to the Farm Bill banning horse slaughter, the next day the Senate Appropriations Committee voted for Senator Mary Landrieu's (D-LA) slaughter ban as Amendment to the Agriculture Appropriations Bill (FY14).


This means that there are Amendments banning horse slaughter on both the House and Senate Appropriations Bill.

The vote in the Senate Appropriations Committee did not go as we had planned or hoped, but all is not lost. There are strategies for Congress currently being planned with our horse industry team, and we all need to bear in mind that a change in the political climate is forthcoming in 2014, which could also work in our favor. United Horsemen plans make certain that those changes mean that we have representation in Washington, D.C. that votes with the horse industry, not against the horse industry.


Right now it feels like we are in a tight spot. Surrounded, if you will. And it reminds me of one of my favorite stories from World War II. On 25 December, 1944 the Imperial Japanese Navy was tearing through the Leyte Gulf. Admiral Hulsey had been lured out into the open ocean, leaving behind a task force - "Taffy 3" - lead by Rear Admiral Sprague. Outnumbered and outgunned, Taffy 3 rushed into the teeth of the enormous force that threatened to wipe out troop and supply ships. In both these actions, the size of the fight in the combatants was the deciding factor, not the size of the force. And that holds true for all of us in the horse industry. We need to continue to charge ahead despite the force of adversity.


This campaign to restore the viability of the horse industry, as well as the welfare of horses, is a campaign we need to view as a marathon, not a sprint. We will probably be in the battle against the activists for the rest of our lives. And it is important to remember that we will always feel like we are outnumbered by the activists and outgunned by their money. But truth is on our side, and the force behind United Horsemen is growing.


The United Horsemen is in it for the long haul. We thank you for supporting us, and we ask for your continued support as we continue to fight for the welfare of horses and the horse industry.


Stay strong and stay the course, with United Horsemen.


Yours truly,

Dave Duquette


United Horsemen

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