OPINION | New York Daily News | Aug. 3, 2022
by ROBERT HOLDEN
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A few weeks ago, a Central Park carriage horse named Billy dropped dead from colic in his stable, after being forced to work during a heat wave. Four weeks ago, a carriage horse named Freddy bolted into oncoming traffic across Fifth Ave., crashing into two cars, resulting in bloody injuries for the horse, damage to cars and a traffic jam. A pedestrian crossing the street was also injured.
These are just the latest tragedies resulting from forcing horses — prey animals that run out of control when frightened — to pull carriages through vehicle-clogged Midtown. A few weeks prior, a horse named Luciana collapsed in the park, and to the horror of many screaming onlookers, the driver tried to drag her by her tail and head, and even kicked her, according to witnesses, in a cruel, improper effort to get the sick animal back on her feet.
Sad stories about the industry aren’t new. The horses that pull carriages through Midtown too often become injured or killed and put carriage passengers, motorists, pedestrians and cyclists in danger. There is also ample documentation of underweight, sick and injured horses being forced to pull carriages. The city’s carriage horses are housed in warehouse-type buildings on the Far West Side, in too-small stalls with precious little ability to move about freely or be with other horses. They are denied everything that makes life worth living for a horse. This has to end.
I, along with my City Council colleagues, introduced a bill that replaces unsafe, inhumane horse-drawn carriages with innovative and cruelty-free horseless electric carriages. Even if ending animal abuse is not your most important issue, the overlapping issues of labor, economic development and tourism beg your attention. My bill will save these horses from a lifetime of hardship, increase income for the carriage drivers and create an impressive tourist attraction.
This legislation does not simply replace horse carriages in New York; it expands a tourist attraction that will allow present-day horse carriage drivers to service more customers, make more money and remove the controversial animal abuse that plagues the industry. Continue at source »
Featured Image: One Green Planet
Official Blog of The Fund for Horses