Ask Joyce: How Can I Help Stop Horse Slaughter?

Posted by Joyce Tischler, ALDF's Founder and General Counsel on September 25, 2009

ALDF’s "Ask Joyce" column appears in each issue of The Animals’ Advocate, ALDF’s quarterly publication.

Dear Joyce,

I can’t believe that tens of thousands of horses are slaughtered in the U.S. for human consumption! I feel so helpless. Is there something I can do to stop this outrage?

ALDF member

Dear ALDF member,

The single most powerful thing you can do is find your own voice, raise it and speak for those who cannot speak for themselves. It starts with passion, which is exactly what your question tells me you have in spades. So, let’s break the rest down into manageable steps. The first step is to get information about the problem and possible solutions. Two bills were recently introduced in Congress–H.R. 503 will end the slaughter of horses for human consumption and H.R. 305 will ban the use of double-decker trucks to transport horses. You can learn more and urge your legislator to vote "yes" on these bills here.

Far too many people contact us and tell us that they can’t make a difference–that only ALDF can take effective action. At ALDF, we are doing everything we can to protect animals, but an enormous resource lies within each of the ALDF supporters reading this right now. Politicians will be most responsive when they hear from their constituents directly. And, the animals need each of us to take that next step: speak up, speak out and speak often.

Now that you have spoken up for the horses, are you willing to do the same thing for other animals? Everything you need is on our website. There is a page titled “Working with Legislators” that explains how to effectively contact and influence your elected representatives. Not sure who your representatives are? Check out our page “Find Your Elected Officials.” Go to that page and click on “Project Vote Smart.” You will be amazed to find all the information you need about who your elected representatives are and how they vote. And, with one more click, you can send your elected representative an email, expressing your opinion about bills that can protect or harm the animals you care deeply about. Plus, ask your legislators to tell you how they plan to vote on those bills.

Don’t have a computer? Oh; I’ve heard that one before. Your local library has several, and they will help you get to our website.

So, please: it has never been easier to make your voice heard and the animals have never needed you more than they do right now. Democracy won’t work to protect animals unless each of us gets actively involved. To paraphrase an ancient quote: If not me, then who? If not now, then when?

For the animals,

One thought on “Ask Joyce: How Can I Help Stop Horse Slaughter?

  1. Mary Craig says:

    Who is speaking for the horses that are being starved or turned out onto public lands to fend for themselves because the owners can no longer afford to feed them, and there are no slaughter houses to send them to? We can’t abolish slaughter and not treat the problem of the now unwanted horses. Veterinary euthanasia is expensive, pickup by a rendering plant is also expensive, and many jurisdictions do not allow burial on private property. It’s admirable to want to stop horse slaughter for human consumption, but what are you doing to address the problems that ending slaughter creates?

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