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Letters & Editorials

A New York Story, Shamefully.

Staten Island Advance - September 17, 2006

What was it that caused a New York City Carriage Horse, standing in a queue on Central Park South to suddenly walk away from the line and directly into on-coming traffic last Saturday afternoon?

Perhaps it was the blaring noise of the Labor Day Parade marching by on Fifth Avenue, just a few feet away, where thousands marched and cheered and horns, pipers and drums sounded at earsplitting pitch.

Or was it the discomfort of, or perhaps disorientation, caused by standing unshaded under direct sunlight in 85 degree heat for hours?

Just maybe this sentient creature of extraordinary grace felt the need for turn out time, to be with others of his species, and a much needed respite from the day-to-day stress of alternating boredom and exhaustive nine-hour shifts only to travel back to a stuffy stall without enough room to even turn around. Fortunately, this grey dappled beauty was caught in time by the person who had leased him/her to work for them on Saturday.

Spotty, the young horse who was spooked by traffic on the streets of this City and crashed into a car, was not as fortunate and euthanized after sustaining injuries in January of this year.

But how many more tragedies will it take to convince the City Council and the Mayor that horses simply do not belong on the streets of NYC?

London, Paris and Toronto have already banned this archaic and cruel trade. The time is now for New York City to do the right thing.

Jacqueline Hoffner
September 12, 2006

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