A matter that has always been close to my heart, even if it is a matter that I haven’t talked about much, simply because it is killing me to think of what race horses endure.
Still, this picture I had to share.
So much I could say, but I am already feeling sick, and in all honesty this says it all. There really are no limits to human cruelty.
No limits for what is legal to do to a horse. Try torturing a dog like that, or an elephant, or I don’t know… any other animal, and see if it wouldn’t cause public outrage.
But a horse, you can subject to anything, it would seem.
On a slightly more personal note, I know I ended up in the middle of the anti rollkur war, and I thought for a while that I could keep it at arm’s length, but I find that by now, it has become very personal for me as well.
Personal enough for me to start losing friends over it. Mostly on facebook, even people I have known all of my life, who think that “abuse” it taking it too far. Mostly people who can’t handle a debate with me, because I have done my research and I have all my arguments lined up by now. Much unlike them, I know what I am attacking, whereas most of them has no idea what it is they are defending.
Still, what really bothers me, are those of my friends who silently watch and say nothing. Those of my friends who hide in the shadows and pretend to not notice any of the pictures or the links of dressage horses being abused. Those of my friends who, offline, even say to me that they have seen it, but dare not take part.
Those of my friends who are clearly too cowardly to take a stand and speak up for an animal that have been abused, misused and tortured by humans for centuries, because they fear for their own future in the world of horses.
I get that. They should be afraid- it’s very easy to no longer be welcome in the world of horses. What I don’t seem to get is why, so many of my friends even want to be part of that world.
Which makes me wonder, to be honest, how much of my time I really want to invest in people like that.
I keep telling myself that it is in human nature to shut up and go with the flow, to never speak up or dare take a stand. I keep telling myself to not expect my friends to care, or to be brave, because when push comes to shove, I have to live with what I do, and what I speak up about, they are the ones who have to live with what they don’t do and what they don’t say. Each to his own right?
I just grew up, with a quote that stayed with me all my life. I don’t even know who said it.
“Whoever watches in silence when animals are abused, are just as guilty as the ones abusing them.”
That has always been one of my strongest believes. The question is, if I really do believe that, how many of my friends can I really, truly call friends at the end of the day?
Now I am sounding like a totally ignorant part of the “militant minorities” of the anti rollkur movement. I am even annoying myself by saying it out loud. But some of my friends, just a special few, I really expected more from. I clearly misjudged them completely. Yes, that bothers me, and makes me wonder why we really are friends, because we all know, I am hardly one to keep quiet about anything. Never have, never will be.
Still, I can’t write about the race horses. Not here.
I have written a short story, entitled “Flare” about the race horses, and the world of race horses as I know it. I can’t even post it here yet. I will include it in my short story collection, once I get that pieced together, because once again, I can’t not, say it.
I just need a bit of time. It’s a cruel story. And I am sure that I don’t even know the half of what really goes on, on the race track. I don’t want to know. What I do know, is killing me already.
So maybe that is how my friends feel, when I post pictures of rollkur on face book, forcing them to know, something they didn’t want to know. Maybe that is why some of them keep quiet and some of them delete me once they realize that I actually know what I am talking about and that I am not just sharing to cause drama.
But it’s just… rollkur is not legal. FEI states that it isn’t legal. If someone doesn’t call attention to it when those rules are broken, where then will the equestrian world end up? If rollkur does become legal, what is next? Like the race horses, broken in at 1 and a half years old, forced, beaten, scared, tied up, and made to run for their lives to the point where it happens regularly that one of them dies on the track and no one cares? Like the Tennessee Walking Horses, mutilated, tortured, beaten and broken for the sake of a special gait?
When do we speak up? When do we keep quiet?
I would like nothing more than to wage a war against the race tracks and have – especially trot- forbidden, but I know I can’t. There is too much money it that, because the race track is not a sport anymore, it’s a game.
The world of dressage and show jumping are not lost yet. Not quite. It can’t be. I just can’t believe that.