A man was charged via a law - on the books for some time and passed by the people of California, having to do with the transfer of horses to slaughter - but those charges, for whatever reason were dropped.
This was "exasperating" to horse welfare advocates, including our (and many of your) friend, Caroline Betts, who was quoted.
“Tons of horses are crossing the border every week for slaughter. This was the one chance to hold someone accountable,” said Caroline Betts, a University of Southern California professor, and founder of Southern California Thoroughbred Rescue. “I think this will embolden California horse traders. They’ve been getting away with this stuff for 18 years. The law’s well written, but with zero enforcement, it’s meaningless.”When you read the article, the sickening nature of the practice is detailed, including, cases where
"the captive bolt – a cattle gun method of stunning horses – sometimes fails to render horses unconscious before they’re hung upside down and butchered," and "a California horse dealer who admitted to shooting horses’ eyes out with a BB gun to subdue them during transit."
I can understand why animal welfare advocates are upset. Your heart is made of coal if that doesn't touch you in some way.
This seems to be common, however, and as usual, there are laws, but since we're dealing with animals, those laws are not enforced enough.
Remember the trainer who, "was ruled to have “mistreated, abused or engaged in an act of cruelty to a horse” and used an “appliance other than whip for the purpose of stimulating speed.” The appliance was described in court documents as a “wooden stick with stripped electrical cords stuck to it.” A veterinarian and two assistants testified seeing a horse at Beulah Park “jump two or three feet in the air” and then witnessed Delahoussaye unplugging an electrical cord from the wall."
He was back in no time. Until he was caught again, and again, and I think a couple other again's. Ray's article linked above deals with the sordid mess.
Questions like this are not difficult for me, and are becoming more black and white, despite not being like Ms. Betts or others who are in the community. I might be tilted more than most, because I do help dogs when I can, but it's easy. Even when I watch videos like this (hard to watch, fast forward to 2:30 to see the better parts), which I did last week, I understand the realities in life, but there are better ways to do things that are kind and sensible; y'know, things we expect from a civilized society.
Enforcing laws people want, and have passed, and kicking someone out of racing (or even better, maybe a little time spent in the greybar hotel) for electrocuting an animal so he leaves the gate quicker is not the least bit radical. It's common sense in 2016. We need more common sense.