Horse slaughter bill making its way through the Ok legislature

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Reported by: Sharon Phillips
Updated: 3/07/2013 5:24 pm Published: 3/07/2013 3:33 pm

Two controversial bills making their way through our state legislature has animal activists up in arms.

House bill 1999 and Senate bill 375 would make horse slaughter legal.

Horses have been a passion for Jena Raymer for more than 30 years now. She hates to think Oklahoma could be a horse slaughter state.

"They are part of American history, and it's just not something that I want to be proud of as an American,” says Raymer.

Jena is one of many horse owners’ statewide urging legislators to reconsider bills that have already been approved in the House and Senate that would end Oklahoma’s 50-year ban on horse slaughtering.

Pam Smith says the fate of her spunky Arabian horse could have been much different.

"He wasn't perfect and he wasn't a mare so they were going to sell him, but actually an organization came in and took him or he would have gone to slaughter,” says Smith.

Those who support opening a horse slaughtering facility in Oklahoma say they agree horses should be treated humanely. They say the slaughter house option would provide a more humane option for horses that have been abandoned, neglected or are suffering. Proponents say it would also be better than shipping horses to Mexico to be killed.

Eric Blevins says he loves horses too and supports the bills.

"The actually slaughterhouse, I approve of because of how many horses per person there actually is,” says Blevins.

However, the way it’s looking now, Oklahoma could be the first state to lift a ban on horse slaughter since Congress legalized it. The House bill would allow horses to be slaughtered in Oklahoma, but ban the sale of horse meat for human consumption here in our state.

For Jena, the thought is just too much.

"There are too many dogs and cats too so are we going to start slaughtering them too,” she asks.

If both the House and the Senate agree, the bill will head to the Governor’s desk to be signed into law.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

MsToriWmn - 3/8/2013 2:00 PM
0 Votes
With the legislature running this bills through their respective houses without pre-press and not allowing the public an opportunity to speak to me screams volumes! Then to future the case three legislators and their families and friends will reap monumental rewards! Owners of horse auctions that the bills says horses have to go through auction, then another owns a transport company, another owns racehorses he is feeding to go to slaughter? That in itself is enough the public should be in an uproar! Then they didn't evaluate the economic loss from the horse show industry that at this moment is trying to pull their shows from the state. They also knew horses have to be feed properly with NO drugs to be for human consumption... they knew and authored the bills... They also knew that right now at least 8 to 11 horse feed lots are in the state waiting for this to pass... who owns them? Yep! One authors family has been running ads to buy good horses! Yikes! Worst of all it is not, I repeat not old and diseased horses going to market... slaughterhouses won't take those ... it's young viable horses with meat on their bones... toxic meat! Slaughter is inhumane! Horses are very intelligent and know they are being put to death so they try to run... I won't go into graphic details... I have had nightmares since I learned on the news of the potential news laws... Does OK want to be known for poisoning the world? Not a left wing radical but a very conservative Oklahoman!

mercygrey8 - 3/8/2013 1:50 PM
0 Votes
I wish your article had added reasons why people are opposing these bills. It isn't solely on not slaughtering the horses, which is a huge reason unto itself. The passing of these bills will hurt Oklahoma financially also. Please look at the 3 slaughter plants that were in the US in the past. These were terrible for the economy in that area. There were also problems with sewage and water treatment, the plants didn't pay the taxes, and they ran up huge infractions that they never paid.The hauling of the horses was a constant problem - and very inhumane (and that's the hauling within our borders). The problem with hauling isn't the TIME, it's the way it's conducted. That isn't going to change. And last but not least, is the bolt action devices that they use are not made for horses, they are made for cattle. Cattle are different physically and mentally from horses. Horses are flight animals, they panic and thrash around. It can take several tries to subdue them. Also the jobs that these plants are going to bring are dangerous, and terrible work conditions - they have to be from the very job that it's intailing. The previous plants paid the employees low wages. Please do the research yourself. Write to your representatives. We will not like where this puts us, if this passes.

catlpenr - 3/7/2013 10:16 PM
0 Votes
Oklahoma appears to want to slaughter horses solely to sell tainted meat to foreign markets. Reminds me of the things that we have found shipped here from China that caused harm. China did not follow regulations. We will put our country in the same situation. When horse slaughter was legal and USDA inspectors when present, horses were not killed humanely. Many people have stopped eating beef as they are concerned that since the beef producers want to slaughter horses now they may not be following regulations as to medications and record keeping for their cattle.

158hermitage - 3/7/2013 8:43 PM
1 Vote
I don't understand the logic of Oklahoma or New Mexico opening up slaughter plant. look at the horsemeat. Scandal in Europe- they must have a glut of it as they are using it's a cheap filler for beef. A dirty little secret by those who deal in the murky horse slaughter trade. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that 90% of American horses over their lifetimes have been injected with veterinary chemicals not " intended for human consumption"...yet you have the legislators of Ok and New Mexico going along with the proslaughter folks who will be making tons of money slaughtering horses intended for European markets only ( unless they prohibit North American horsemeat because it is not safe to eat) with the inspections paid by the taxpayers who don't want horses slaughtered and won't eat horsemeat anyway... Who is minding the proverbial store in those states?if it was the people voting on this, it wouldn't happen...
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