SPECIAL REPORT BY CLANT SEAY
Mike Inman out as Celebration CEO
After eight years at the helm of the Tennessee Walking Horse Celebration, CEO Mike Inman called it quits Wednesday. Yes, you heard it right. Inman’s resignation was reported as “effective immediately” by the Shelbyville Times-Gazette.
The Times-Gazette tried to reach Inman on Wednesday, leaving messages at his Celebration office and the voicemail of his personal cellphone but he did not return the call.
Inman formally took the reins of the organization in October 2012 according to the Walking Horse Report. He arrived at a time when the Tennessee Walking Horse industry was embroiled in controversy.
The industry faced seemingly unrelenting criticism in the media after a prominent horse trainer — nationally known Tennessee Walking Horse Trainer Jackie McConnell — was arrested and later incarcerated on 52 counts of violation of the Horse Protection Act.
It will be a significant challenge to find a replacement for Inman if it’s even worth it.
CCABLAC at Celebration
The grassroots Citizens Campaign Against “Big Lick” Animal Cruelty (CCABLAC) to Tennessee Walking Horses once again dominated the 11-day Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration (Aug. 26 – Sep. 5).
Representing over 25 million persons who have viewed the videos depicting “Big Lick” Animal Cruelty, and more than 700,000 persons who have signed Change.Org Petitions to end it, advocates peacefully assembled outside the Celebration gates for the sixth consecutive year to protest for “the horses” who do not have a voice.
Attendance an all time low
2020 Celebration Attendance Numbers
Thursday, Aug. 27, 2020 — 200
Friday, Aug. 28, 2020 — 400
Saturday, Aug. 29, 2020 — 2,100
Sunday, Aug. 30, 2020 — 400
Monday, Aug. 31, 2020 — 400
Tuesday, Sep. 1, 2020 — 400
Wednesday, Sep. 2, 2020 — 400
Thursday, Sep. 3, 2020 — 1,250
Friday, Sep. 4, 2020 — 2,100
Saturday, Sep. 5, 2020 — 7,500
Step up for the PAST Act
READY TO FINISH THE “BIG LICK” OFF?
The Prevent All Soring Tactics Act, or PAST Act, will remove the approximately 8-pound STACK SHOES and CHAINS necessary to create the morally reprehensible “BIG LICK” show gait.
The PAST Act (H.R.693) passed the US House overwhelmingly by a vote of 333-96 last year. The Senate version of the bill S.1007 must also pass for the Act to become law. Pick up your phone and call or email your Senators.
CONTACT BOTH OF YOUR SENATORS
You have two US Senators. Use the links below to identify and contact them to cosponsor S.1007 right away. You can send an email on the US Senate website, or call them up. Thank you.
• See Senate.gov — How to Contact Your US Senators »
• See Senate.gov — Find Your US Senators »
“Big Lick” animal cruelty
The method by which trainers create the “Big Lick” is clearly exceedingly abusive and harmful causing the horses to suffer a great deal of pain and mental torture during training and performing.
The horse from this video is in a lot of pain and that’s why he reacted like that. He could not bear the suffering anymore. Raise awareness!
“We are either for animal cruelty or we’re against it,” said animal advocate Clant Seay. “The celebration is not pageantry. It’s not tradition. It’s animal abuse. It’s animal cruelty.”