On Wednesday I had the privilege of watching the Snohomish County Council vote to ban horse slaughter, and I am so glad to know that our community is taking a stand for animals and the environment by not allowing a horse slaughter plant to operate here. I hope that this ban will light a spark in the community’s compassion, and that this will inspire people to care about other animals as well.
When we talk about protecting animals, we often are talking about horses, cats, dogs — animals who we allow to live at our homes and who we have the chance to know and love as individuals — but there are many other animals whose suffering and welfare also deserve consideration. Whether an animal is a horse or a pig or a cow or a chicken, he or she can experience pain and fear, and a slaughterhouse is a nightmare in which animals see and hear their companions die, where animals are often skinned alive, and where there’s no such thing as a humane death. All of these animals deserve better than this.
When given the chance, they will play, show love, take care of their babies, bathe in the sun … and they deserve that chance. I implore our community to use this ban on horse slaughter to challenge our general acceptance of animal slaughter and to realize that if we got to know and love pigs as we do dogs and cows as we do horses, we wouldn’t support the slaughter of any animals.