Written by Michelle Kretzer
The American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act died last year when the congressional session ended and, along with it, our hope of permanently ending the slaughter of American horses for food in 2012. But we're getting another chance.
Senators and representatives from both sides of the aisle have come together to sponsor the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act. The SAFE Act would prevent horse slaughter in the U.S. and would slam shut the loophole that currently allows horses to be shipped to Mexico and Canada to be slaughtered.
Last year, more than 160,000 horses were crammed onto transport trucks and sent on grueling journeys across the border. A PETA undercover investigation of one such transport revealed that horses—including thoroughbred horses formerly used for racing—who were being shipped to Canada spent 36 hours on a truck in subfreezing conditions and were not given rest, food, or even a sip of water. Inside the slaughterhouse, workers shot the horses in the head with a captive-bolt gun, but at least 40 percent of them were still conscious after the first shot and had to be shot several times. Then they were strung up by one leg, and their throats were slit.
A full 80 percent of Americans oppose horse slaughter. But just feeling that way won't help. Please, let this be the thing that you do to help animals today. Urge your senators and representatives to support the SAFE Act.
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