This is a lengthy article with the usual pro-slaughter nonsense: horse abandonment has skyrocketed since the closure of horse slaughter plants in the U.S.; horse lovers say it is better to die in a slaughter plant than starve to death; the price of horses has plummeted, etc. Never, ever does anyone, even anti-horse slaughter folks, bring up the problem of overbreeding.
Oh, and there is the ever present reference to horses at “its” and the latest ag terms used to get around the words kill or slaughter, such as harvest and process. Last we heard, you harvest grains and vegetables, and process application forms.
In the meantime, we have excerpted the parts of the article discussing the pending legislation and how Viebrock hopes to get around the suspension of USDA inspection fees by the federal government. Otherwise, they’ll have to eat the horse meat in Missouri.
And no mention of how they expect to get around the 6-month quarantine edict by the European Parliament in an attempt to keep toxic horse meat out of Europe. Does Viebrock really think the EU will exclude the good old USA? It is, after all, the super medicated American horses who are at the root of the issue.
Cross-posted from the St. Louis Post-Despatch at StLToday.com
By GEORGINA GUSTIN | March 10, 2010
Earlier this year, state Rep. Jim Viebrock, R-Republic, introduced a bill designed to circumvent federal rules that prevent horse slaughter for human consumption and would enable horse processing facilities to open in Missouri. Viebrock says the legislation would jump-start the ailing equine industry, which pro-slaughter advocates say has been hurt by the recent closure of the country’s three horse slaughterhouses.
Viebrock’s bill, which has sparked outrage in anti-slaughter circles, has the support of the state’s director of agriculture, Jon Hagler.
In 2007, the last U.S. horse slaughter facility, in DeKalb, Ill., closed after the Illinois Legislature passed a law banning horse slaughter for human consumption. A federal appropriations change, enacted in 2005, also said that no federal funds could be used for horse slaughter inspections, in effect banning interstate shipment of slaughter horses and preventing any facilities from reopening.
Since the closure, American kill buyers have instead sent horses to Mexico and Canada, where European-owned processing facilities fulfill steady demand from European and Japanese markets, and where horse meat retails for $10 a pound or more.
Viebrock hopes his bill will restart the industry on American soil, specifically in Missouri, where horse slaughtering has not taken place in decades.
The aim is to provide a funding mechanism that would reimburse the U.S. Department of Agriculture for the required inspections. But, federal authorities say, it remains unclear whether the law would work, because the federal rule mandates that no money be spent on the federal inspections, whether reimbursed or not.
“In theory, you could have a state facility,” said Caleb Weaver, a department spokesman. “But you can only ship in the state and couldn’t cross borders to go elsewhere.”
Still, Viebrock and his supporters are optimistic. They say that it will come down to how the law is interpreted. Read full story >>
Image of Viebrock found at Fired Up Missouri here >>