Lea Michele Stands Against Horse-Drawn Cruelty in New York Taxi-Top Ads

For Immediate Release:
December 1, 2022

Contact:
Robin Goist 202-483-7382

New York – You don’t need tickets to Funny Girl to see Lea Michele in New York City. That’s because the Broadway star is hitting the streets in can’t-be-missed taxi-top ads calling for an end to horse-drawn carriages. The PETA campaign is in support of a proposed ban on the horse-drawn carriage industry, which causes horses to suffer as they pull oversized loads in heavy traffic and all weather extremes.

“Ryder’s Law,” named for the horse who collapsed on Ninth Avenue this summer, would replace the carriages with eco-friendly electric vehicles. Michele is one of numerous celebrities who are speaking out against the cruelty of the carriage industry, many of whom sprang into action after seeing the footage of Ryder after he collapsed. For over an hour—with no veterinary care—his driver slapped him, whipped him, and screamed at him to get up. Hundreds of millions of people have now seen the horrifying video, and more than 100,500 PETA supporters have petitioned New York City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams to pass Ryder’s Law.

Funny Girl’s Lea Michele knows that forcing horses to toil on crowded city streets is no laughing matter,” says PETA Director Ashley Byrne. “PETA is pushing for a ban on horse-drawn carriages and asking compassionate New Yorkers and tourists to say neigh to carriage rides.”

In an exclusive PETA video, Michele exposes the harsh conditions that these overworked horses are subjected to daily—from inhaling exhaust fumes to pounding the hard pavement—leading to respiratory ailments and debilitating injuries. Impatient and careless drivers have also caused multiple incidents in which carriages have been hit, injuring and killing both horses and humans.

Michele’s message will run throughout December, during New York City’s busy holiday season.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment or abuse in any other way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind