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 Post subject: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2013 7:50 pm 
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In my crazy little dysfunctional friendship that I have with my friend from Italy, well he is originally from the United States... and now that he is in a place with such interesting and foreign foods (to me)... we have this little thing that I don't remember when it all really started but I like it when he takes a picture of his dinner plate when he cooks or eats something good and then he shows it to me on the computer, like when he goes out to eat in a restaurant. Well after he shows me the picture of what he is eating or has eaten, I try to identify exactly what it is, and a lot of the time I am wrong- because they eat a lot of things like pistachios & HORSE- being because it is apparently a "Southern Italy" thing.

Well this last one has me so grossed out!!! I actually looked up horse meat on wikkipedia and when I was reading it I was gagging. I personally am not a vegan or even a vegetarian (although I am considering becoming one "someday") - but seriously... doesn't eating horse seem like you are eating a pet? Yes I know that people eat dogs and cats in some places and that is just AWFUL... but my friend just doesn't seem to understand why I get so upset about the horse thing.

I personally won't eat duck or rabbit because they are "cute" and god forbid veal, because of the inhumane ways in which they raise them.... but I am wondering, am I being unreasonable when it comes to eating horse, or am I being hypocritical by eating some animals but not others. I am just starting to get weirded out by knowing where I stand on these food issues but not knowing if the "why" is even reasonable or not. What do you think about all of this?

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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:26 pm 
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Another thing to consider is the horse is a cultural icon in the U.S. - the West couldn't have been won without the horse, could it? :wink: I think this also plays a role in how *eating* horse is viewed with such distaste, if not revulsion in the States.

This revulsion was the reason that horse slaughter was banned in the U.S. - people couldn't imagine - and wouldn't stand for - horses being slaughtered for food on American soil. But sadly, that's not the end of it, as these horses were shipped to Canada and Mexico for slaughter. Transportation to abbatoirs is in itself a horror for any animal, not only horses, as they can be taken for long distances without even the mercy of a rest stop for a drink of water.

In 2010 WSPA published findings (based on Canadian documentation) that*:

WSPA's key findings:

1) Unacceptable numbers of animals are dying during transport

2) Animals are transported in overcrowded conditions

3) Severely injured, crippled and sick animals are transported in contravention of regulations

4) Severely compromised animals are transported and left to suffer for prolonged periods

5) A shortage of specially-trained animal welfare inspectors, particularly veterinarians, puts animal health and welfare at risk

6) CFIA's reporting and enforcement are often weak and inconsistent

7) Animals suffer as a result of poor driver training


This is essentially "hell on earth" for these animals - horses, cattle, pigs, etc. Think about it - if conditions are so bad in here in Canada (and the U.S.) - just *what* additional torments do food animals endure in less developed countries?





* Taken from WSPA: http://www.wspa.ca/wspaswork/farmanimal ... fault.aspx

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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:28 am 
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So Canada eats horse too? Why did I not know that? I didn't even know that Mexico eats horses either... and my mom is from Mexico and I have been there many numerous times. I think it so horrible to eat pets... that to me, is like eating human flesh. I know some people have pigs for pets but that is a whole different species of pig than pork-pigs isn't it? I think that horses are noble animals and I think that they are smarter than most people give them credit for. I have never owned a horse and I think I have only ridden them only once before but from every movie I have seen and from the 500 episodes of Animal Cops that I have ever seen- they seem to just KNOW stuff, and I have the feeling that they probably know when they are in line to be slaughtered even... and that just cannot be humane. I wonder if there are many people in Mexico or in Canada that are trying to outlaw this practice of eating horse and of how close they might actually be from accomplishing it? I do feel like a hypocrite for eating meat when I love animals so much... I know that if I were alone in a hypothetical situation in which I would have to kill an animal if I wanted to eat the meat, I would eat a LOT of chicken. Chickens seem like stupid animals and I have little regard for them. Still I would never want for ANY animal to suffer and I know that in those cramped little boxes that they keep them in on chicken farms that they do suffer. Free-range chicken seems the more ideal way to eat them and I was about to say that I couldn't afford the free range chickens but that is not true... I just don't think of it as a priority rather. I don't eat quail, I don't eat lamb, I don't eat duck or rabbit as I mentioned... I won't eat frogs, I won't even eat shark, but I have eaten rattlesnake and I would do it again. I think that what it comes down to for me is whether I am accustomed to it or if I think of the animal as "cute". I would never dream of eating venison, but some people who are raised by a father or mother who is a hunter are accustomed to it and might have developed a taste for it- but I still secretly inside of me would be disgusted if say for instance I went out to dinner with someone and they chose venison for their meal. I would not be disgusted if someone ate ostrich but I don't think I would even care to try it... but I guess I would on a dare, let's say- and that is because I don't think they are cute and I don't think they are "noble". I think cows are cute but I was raised eating them and I do not think they are noble... so I will eat them, but I would never watch a video of how they are butchered. I have no idea where I am going with this at this point... I am rambling again, lol. But I think I am just trying to see in myself where I draw the line. I am also wondering if I am ever going to become a vegetarian and when exactly, because I have been saying for quite some time that I am "going to". Is it better late than never? I kind of wish something inside of me would click and it would become easier for me to see WHY I want to become one, but really I see multiple reasons of how it would benefit me and the animals. Maybe the "issues" I have of me becoming a vegetarian is another topic, I dunno- but I am going to end this post or else I am just going to keep going on forever... hehe :blush:

Oh and BeeKay I feel really bad about the inhumane ways of transporting the horses... Is there anything we, the U.S. citizens can do about this?

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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2013 3:44 pm 
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^ Horse meat isn't widely eaten here. http://news.nationalpost.com/2012/04/10 ... arliament/
There used to be a meat shop in Vancouver that also sold horse meat, but has since closed. Many people here are similarly revolted at the thought of eating horse.

Regarding the horses shipped here from the U.S. for slaughter, the vast majority (if not all of it) is destined for the European and Asian markets.

And what happens to racehorse that don't make as much as expected in winnings (even Kentucky Derby winners aren't immune)? They'll end up on some Japanese guy's dinner plate: https://secure.peta.org/site/Advocacy?c ... on&id=2103

http://www.peta.org/issues/animals-in-e ... ghter.aspx

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 Post subject: !
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2013 2:51 am 
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I had no idea racehorses became horsemeat. How appalling!!!!!!

I guess I have heard of it before when for horses they joked with terms like "he'll be sent to the glue factory"....

I never even thought of the actual process that they go through!! :evil:

Oh my God it makes me sick! I am reading other links that are attached to the ones that you have provide and I am becoming educated. :D Thank you!

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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2013 8:06 pm 
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Although everyone's entitled to their opinion, I personally would never eat horse meat either. I grew up in a small rural town near a lot of farms and to me I would feel like I was eating the family pet. :(


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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 2:54 am 
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Different strokes for different folks.

I come from Iceland and we eat horse here.
Don't see anything different with that than eating the lambs, chickens and other young.

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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 3:22 am 
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Lethe... I was just going to look up some youtube videos of Iceland tonight!!! I don't even know why, I just got inquisitive and want to learn about their/your culture! 8) Do you have a website that I might go to to learn about your country & customs etc?

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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 3:49 am 
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@JuJuBe42 sure :) I will pm you with a few links in a bit :)

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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:03 am 
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^ Thank you Lethe.... you ROCK!!! 8) Now I have something edumacational to do! ;)

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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:41 am 
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I would agree with the above posts and say that it's a cultural thing. I'm not a vegetarian, unfortunately, but to me killing and eating any mammal is an equally disgusting action. So whether it's a horse, a dog, or a cow...makes no difference...essentially it's a mammal.

Now, if you get emotionally attached to an animal and can still kill and eat it - I would say it takes some nerve, but as we know, that is what our ancestors did - raised animals to provide food.

To me the fairest thing seems hunting/fishing...at least it's a more "natural" law of nature - the food chain. The old "wolf eats sheep" story, if you can track it down, you are somewhat entitled to eat it - but rarely does hunting/fishing works like that in the modern world.

Another point is that horses are domesticated mustangs, in nature mustangs, unless they are ill or injured or very young, are really preyed upon by natural predators, unlike elks and deer that tend to overpopulate, so it would make more sense to eat your own catch, I guess.

Bottom line, as long one eats any mammal meat, he/she should be tolerant to what mammal the other chooses to eat (and I don't include humans in the list of edible mammal just FYI)

Now I'm going to stop my rambling, since as I said I'm not even a vegetarian and this is probably the most hypocritical post I've ever written.


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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 12:33 pm 
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It's interesting that the whole issue of eating horse meat has come up, because just a couple of days ago, it emerged that Tesco (Britain's top supermarket chain), along with a few other supermarket chains here had been selling beefburgers "contaminated with horsemeat."
Here's a link to the story
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-21038521

Personally I see no difference between horsemeat and, say, beef. Horsemeat is widely eaten in other parts of the world but it's because of the emotional connontations that many people feel horrified by the thought of eating horsemeat but won't think twice about tucking into a beefburger.

This BBC article explains it quite nicely:
Why are the British so revolted by the idea of horsemeat?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21043368

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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 1:19 pm 
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^ Thanks for posting these links - "contaminated", indeed! The choice of words alone speaks volumes.

I wonder why Japan was left off of that list, as they slaughter and consume horses too, including former racehorses from the U.S.

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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 3:14 am 
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I personally haven't tried horse meat. I won't judge anyone who does eat it; regardless of where you come from, horse meat has been a facet of human diet in times of hunger and war, even if we primarily view them as riding animals (and even pets) in North America. It depends on the culture, degree of personal attachment to the issue and how you view horses in general, I imagine.

From my understanding, science is out on the issue of horse intelligence. While we grow close to and regard them as intelligent animals, evidence has pointed to them not being particularly intelligent compared to cows. In spite of our diet - be we vegetarian/vegan or not - our views of horses seem to be quite colored by our close experiences with the animals as transportation and companions. It's understandable to me if some people regard them as little different than any other edible animal.


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 Post subject: Re: My friend eats horse...
PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 10:26 am 
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I don't eat horse meat, simply because I never liked the taste.But I don't see a difference with beef or pork meat.When I was young there were special Horse butchers, and the meat was much cheaper. They are all long gone and now you really have to know the addresses and it is expensive. Just a question. Since you don't eat horses , what to do with the cadaver when a horse dies? Here it's not allowed to bury your animals and cremating, like we do with our pets goes by kg, so for a horse unpayable.Just popped into my mind because I have some friends with horses and when one had to be put asleep last year, the best option was .. butcher( read payable option)

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