December 15, 2004

By Doug Newman

Letter to the Rep. Bob Beauprez (R-CO) about a proposal to slaughter 23,000 wild horses on public lands.

Congressman Beauprez,

There is an appropriations bill coming up for vote very soon which provides for the slaughter of 23,000 wild horses on public lands.

Vote NO on it.

There is ZERO constitutional authority for Congress to exercise authority over these lands. Read Article I, Section 8, as well as the Tenth Amendment.

Moreover, we in America have gone too far down that road of deciding which life is "convenient" and which life isn't. You can tell a lot about how a person treats people by how they treat animals. When Congress starts deciding which animal life is convenient, it is only a matter of time before they start deciding which human life is convenient.

Communist China and Nazi Germany are but two examples of nations with such governments. Would you want to live under such a regime?

And if you do not have time to read all provisions of this, or any, bill, vote NO on it. No new law is better than a bad new law.

Sleep well.

Douglas F. Newman


Hello everyone! Please take a minute and forward to as widely as you can.

We desperately need your help to get the word out about a Rider on an Appropriations Bill that is sneaking its way thru Congress and a vote is expected on Monday.

This Rider would give the Bureau of Land Management the authority to begin the slaughter of 23,000 wild horses on public lands throughout the Western states.

Any horse that is 10 years old and older will be sent immediately to slaughter, and any horse that is younger than 10 who has been sent to auction 3 times and not been sold will be sent to slaughter. And the BLM would not have to do any advertising to open up adoption of the horses.

We must get the word out about this -- wild horses are essential to the ecosystem of the West, along with the Buffalo, the prairie dog, and the endangered black footed ferret.

They are also essential to the spiritual and cultural survival of the Native Peoples there.

Though the ostensible reason for the horses being slaughtered is "overgrazing," no such mass slaughter of cattle is proposed. This Administration is well-known for its "embedding" with major corporations. The cattle industry is a powerful lobby and is likely behind this legislation, as it is behind Montana Department of Livestock's yearly slaughter of the last remaining herd of genetically pure wild Buffalo on public lands in Yellowstone National Park. (Interesting that the Senator who introduced this Rider is also from Montana.)

Thank you for your work and for taking action,

Amanda Holmes



International Society for the Protection of Mustangs and Burros

CONTACT: Karen A. Sussman 605-964-6866 or 605-365-6991

Lantry, SD- Surreptitiously, over the Thanksgiving Day Holiday, a rider (#142) introduced by Senator Mark Burns of Montana in the omnibus federal Appropriation Bill literally guts the built in protections in the 1971 Wild Horse and Burro Act and will allow for thousands of wild horses to be shipped to slaughter.

Without hearings or input from concerned citizens of our country this rider appeared in the 4,000 page spending bill document and was passed unanimously by both houses. It is now waiting signing by President Bush on December 8th.

"After thirty-three years of a compassionate, conservation minded Act that protected the fast diminishing wild horse herds from slaughter, this rider spells doom to America's wild horses", according to Karen Sussman, president of ISPMB.

Sussman says that ISPMB's first president, Wild Horse Annie, and the organization committed twenty-one years of fighting to protect the few remaining wild horses on public lands so that future generations could enjoy these magnificent animals that represent freedom and the American way. Sussman says, "With one swipe of the ink over paper with the President's signature, over fifty years of fighting for protection of wild horses and burros in our country will be annihilated."

Today, we have fewer wild horses and burros than in 1971 when the Wild Horse and Burro Act was passed. The constant erosion of protection has been an ongoing battle with the BLM, mandated by law to protect these animals. In 1974, there were more than 55,000 wild horses and burros roaming ten western states and 303 herd areas
identified. Today, according to BLM statistics, although much disputed by preservation groups, there are 36,000 wild horses and burros and only 186 areas where wild horses and burros can be found. More herd areas are slated to be zeroed out.

There is still time to makes changes in the Appropriation Bill as Congress reconvenes on Monday to pull some riders out of the bill. If Congress would so deem, rider #142 could be pulled out on Monday.

Sussman says that a groundswell of support is needed and concerned citizens must contact their Congressional representatives in their states. Already the phone lines to the president’s office are ringing constantly.

If the rider cannot be pulled from the Appropriation Bill the rider becomes a permanent amendment to the Wild Horse and Burro Act, it opens the backdoor for the BLM to send thousands of wild horses to slaughter.

If you would like to post this, please email me and include this link.

Freely Speaking: Essays by Doug Newman