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Give Horses a Valentine: Freedom From Carriages!

February 09, 2010 | Horse Carriages / Horses

February 14th Protest

Have a heart for the horses, and please join Friends of Animals and the Coalition to Ban-Horse Drawn Carriages on Valentine's Day, Sunday, February 14th for a very important day of action and protest for New York City's exploited carriage horses.

Valentine's Day is one of the busiest of the year for the horse-drawn carriage industry. So we're taking to the streets, gathering to inform the public that taking a carriage ride on Valentine's Day means making a date with domination of someone who can't leave the relationship.

We'll be handing out handmade Valentines to potential carriage customers where carriages line up waiting for customers. We'll urge people to take a pedicab ride instead, and to honor the day dedicated to love by having empathy and respect for all beings.

Until the horse-drawn carriage industry ends forever in New York City, we are committed to being a persistent presence voicing our opposition and standing in solidarity with the horses-for all to see. Please join us in this important educational work.

Valentine-themed posters will be provided to all who join.

WHEN: February 14, 2010 -- from 1:00 to 3:00 pm
WHERE: 5th Avenue and Central Park South - north/west corner (near "hack line" - customer meeting spot) near 59th Street.

To RSVP or if you have any additional questions, please contact Edita Birnkrant by Email or phone 212.247.8120


I don't like seeing horse drawn carriages in the hot summer in Boston around Faneuil Hall. It is cruel i think, as well as horse drawn hayrides, etc. I am one who feels animals are not workers, such as the horses, such as the WHALES, if you saw free willy you would see that the whale in Florida is very much meant to be in the ocean and not performing tricks, i have had hayrides and swam with dolphins and saw Shamu, but now that i am in late thirties, i see these things as all cruel...

Before horses were pulling wagons or carriages, they were free to exist for their own reasons. They were then taken out of this state and, through selective breeding, made into animals who could be exploited for human purposes. There was never a right for human beings to take wild horses and dominate them. If a horse does enjoy pulling a carriage (which is a difficult queston to answer, since we don't know what it is like to be a horse), it's only because the horse is bred for that purpose. The carriage and carriage horse relationship is not characterized by friendship, but by oppression.

Horses built this country buy pulling wagons with stone and wood for buildings, by clearing forested lands and transporting people and goods. Carriages drawn by horses have been part of the livery system in Vienna, Austria since 1608. Contrary to some notions today, the work horse requires a certain amount of exercise to maintain its muscle balance and health. Being a herd animal, the carriage horses like to be with the other horses and their drivers and patrons. The horse is sad when it has to take a day off and happy to go to the farm for R & R and equally happy to return to the familiar urban environment. Anti-carriage people just do not understand the nature of our draft horse friends who like their work and their human and equine friends. [Blog editors' note: That's a nice tale, but not relevant to getting horses off the streets of New York City, Philadelphia, San Antonio, Charleston -- or any other city where they're in danger, and once they're too lame, or too old to lug tourists around hot, cold, congested or otherwise busy city streets, they're sent to slaughter. It's shameful. Horses belong wild and free on public lands.]

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