In Nevada, home to the majority of America’s wild mustangs, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is rounding up as thousands of wild horses.
One of the most frustrating aspects of Nevada’s wild horse round-up is that the BLM may not be telling an accurate story. They have spun a tale about “overpopulation” and “environmental destruction,” but the reality seems to be that wild horses are being removed in order to make room for ranchers to graze their cattle. That is, the removal of horses is to produce “grass-fed,” “pasture-raised” beef.
Though “pasture-raised” beef is likely to be far more humane than most other kinds of animal products (because factory farmed chickens suffer far more than pasture-raised cows), eating beef is not truly respectful of animals or the environment. Beef is inherently inefficient, particularly when wild horses are removed from pastures in order to allow cattle to graze. And beef production is terribly damaging to the environment. If you care about horses, you won’t eat cows.
But there are more similarities between animal species…
The government is treating free-roaming horses just like they treat free-roaming cats and dogs. First, they declare the animals are “overpopulated,” “nuances,” or “spreading disease,” and then they capture the animals. They put the animals in “holding pens” or “shelters” and put some up for adoption. Many of the animals will be labeled “unadoptable” and those animals will be killed or warehoused.
It’s cruel. It’s unnecessary. It’s wrong.
Creative solutions exist. Animals don’t have to be killed.
For those of us familiar with free-roaming cats, we know that TNR (Trap-Neuter-Return) is a better solution than putting cats in shelters and euthanizing the “unadoptables.” We know that the current method of “animal control” – the one that kills 70% of shelter cats – is wrong.
For those of us who are vegetarians or vegans, we know that beans and faux meats are a better solution than cramming chickens and pigs in factory farms and killing them. We know that the current method of animal agriculture (factory farming) – the one that produces over 90% of animal products – is wrong.
We know that a commitment to education and community involvement is not only the most ethical solution, it’s also the only long-term practical solution to conflicts between humans and animals. We know that humans and animals CAN live in harmony.
Choose vegan. Do it for the cows, pigs, and chickens. But also do it for the horses, cats, dogs, and humans!
“pasture-raised beef is more humane” & “over 90% of animal products are factory farmed”: http://www.farmforward.com/farming-forward/food-choices
“factory farmed chickens suffer”: http://fowlplaymovie.com/
“beef production is damaging to the environment”: http://www.fao.org/docrep/010/a0701e/a0701e00.HTM
“70% of cats in shelters are killed”: http://www.alleycat.org/NetCommunity/Page.aspx?pid=395