Target: Kevin Flanery, President of the Churchill Downs race track
Goal: Ensure all racehorses get a chance at long lives free from the possibility of slaughter
The month of May is known for many things: blooming gardens hinting at summer, Mother’s Day, and the Kentucky Derby. While all of these events sound exciting one is actually an incredibly cruel industry. Each Kentucky Derby features thoroughbred horses and their riders who, for two minutes, race to the finish line to win a blanket of roses, a title and a chance at a longer life. Many of the horses which do not win suffer a terrible fate: they may be sent to slaughter and sold for people in Europe to eat.
Horses are not the only creatures which suffer for the appetites of humans. Cows, pigs, chickens, sheep and other animals are slaughtered for food and used for cruel cosmetics testing. Thoroughbred horses spend a lot of time with humans, becoming stronger and more presentable, and yet are too-often shoved to the side if they do not win the Kentucky Derby. The losing horses may be auctioned off for other work-related purposes, or else shipped oversees and slaughtered.
While all acts of animal cruelty are barbaric, the idea that a horse could be shipped to slaughter so casually after once being such a huge part of a person’s life is atrocious. The thoroughbred horses in the race are typically three-years-old with plenty of life left in them. Surely there is a more compassionate way to ease them into retirement once their racing days are over.
Demand that all racing horses be treated with respect rather than sold to become meat for someone’s dinner table.
Dear Mr. Flanery,
It is my understanding that the only horse typically guaranteed a safe life after racing in the Kentucky Derby is the race’s winner. Not only is this practice incredibly unfortunate for those that partake in the Derby it is an awful fate for any animal, let alone those that were once doted on and practically worshiped.
I urge you to ensure that all horses involved in the Derby have rewarding, meaningful lives after their racing careers and are exempt from being sent to slaughter for their meat. While you may not personally be involved with so-called “kill” auctions your role at Churchill Downs puts you in an excellent position to help end the practice. Please do the right thing and protect these noble animals.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Softeis via Wikipedia