WHR Copyright 2006

By Sadie Fowler
    The longstanding debate over horse slaughter came to a head Tuesday,
March 14, 2006 when a district court made the decision to defer the
enforcement of the bill that was introduced into Congress in February.
    The bill, The American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act (H.R. 503 & S
1915) reads, ³to prohibit the shipping, transporting, moving, delivering,
receiving, possessing, purchasing, selling, or donation of horses and other
equines to be slaughtered for human consumption, and for other purposes."
    ³A coalition of animal protection groups --  The Humane Society of the
United States, Animal Welfare Institute, The Fund For Animals, Society for
Animal Protective Legislation, Doris Day Animal League, the American Society
for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, and American Humane Association --
are disappointed with today's district court decision to allow for the
continued slaughter of American horses in violation of federal law and
Congress's clear directive. We stand by the majority of Congress and the
American people who want our horses protected,² according to a joint
statement from animal protection groups.
    Still, however, this controversial debate has its strong opponents. The
Report has received many letters opposing the bill for fear of the
abandonment of unwanted horses, which leads to the slow, suffering, death of
a horse.
    Niels Holch, a Washington D.C. lobbyist who works on behalf of several
Tennessee Walking Horse organizations, said that what is significant about
the district court's decision on Tuesday, is the timing. The anti-slaughter
provision was introduced as a temporary solution to the slaughter of horses.
The provision only lasts until 9-30-06.
    While activists say they'll continue to fight for this provision to be
enforced, it is questionable whether or not that will happen by the
expiration of the temporary provision in September.