Sonya Meadows, Executive Director of Animals Angels, told the crowd about their investigations that revealed terrible cruelty to horses at every step in the slaughter pipeline, from the auctions to the slaughter house.
Ann Marini, Ph.D., M.D., an organizer and lead sponsor of the conference, discussed her powerful study which confirmed the danger to public health from consumption of meat from U.S. horses which are given bute and other drugs banned in animals raised for food.
Our presentation was very well received and we had a lot of positive feedback for our work. Also appreciated was our new film A Horse’s Nightmare, released for the first time at the conference. To be used to gain support for legislative efforts banning horse slaughter and to raise further awareness about the issue, the film is a short 7 minutes / 7seconds. A Horse’s Nightmare can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hvWBtoQ3C8E
Hi Everybody! Congratulations on holding largest meeting of the minds of equine welfare September 26-28 in Alexandria, VA (adjacent to D.C.)! What a tremendous accomplishment to come together and share thoughts, research, information and hope! While I wasn’t able to attend in person I was able to keep up with snippets from your sessions via Twitter feed after suggesting folks add #IECnews into their tweets so a running feed could be established. I also had a wrap up call with one very motivated participant who gave me the general gist from the info-packed three days.
I understand that several main themes became apparent as the sessions went forward:
The tremendous need for compassion throughout every aspect of equine stewardship – from organized disciplines to wild equine herd management
Encouragement to create effective talking points to start making more powerful inroads throughout the legislative machine – less about blaming and complaining and more about illuminating and repeating in ways that aren’t so much confrontational as they are indicative of representing the hearts and minds of legislators’ constituents – their voting public; their job security.
Organizing and coordinating all of our efforts to embrace the grassroots and harness the power of the people
Soon many participants at the conference will begin releasing the information they put together and presented. There is a wealth of important statistics, facts and other line items that give law makers the tools they need to effect change. There is a lot of brand new information that was assembled from several divergent sources that bring to light via economic impact of many of the heartfelt issues we all embrace and seek to effect for the better. This information needs to be amassed, synthesized where appropriate to do so and made available!
Our Competition is Organized
We need to be too. I think we believe they have more money than us too – and maybe they do. But we have the better stories. What we’re missing is a lack of coordination. Ok, there are other aspects endemic throughout our efforts that are detrimental to our missions as a whole – but these can be overcome.
I propose to help do just that. In two important, cost effective and tremendously influential ways.
1. Social Networking
As some of you know I created and ran the equine welfare network “EquineConnection.org” for as long as I could afford to but being that doing so requires great amounts of time and effort I simply ran out of the personal resources to keep that going. It’s too bad because something like that is what you leaders are calling for right now. On the plus side the world of social networking is growing by leaps and bounds all around us and tremendous new tools are available for free via Facebook, Google+ and the others. I don’t think we need a separate network – we just need to use the ones we have access to better!
IECnews Domain Name
It would be awesome if people had a portal to our widespread efforts. To this end I propose obtaining a domain name that’s agreeable to all and listing links to various projects that carry forward this work. I looked and IECnews.org is available. So is the twitter handle of the same name. Because we’ve already established a stream of information with thehashtag we’re well on our way to corrdinating ourselves proactively! The EWA has already already got the Facebook page (and closing in on 700 connections!) for this event at https://www.facebook.com/InternationalEquineConference . I’m assuming most of you have your own organizational Facebook pages too. Might I propose you add the link to your organization’s Facebook page there as well. To maximize our potential reach we should all be connected there for starters. My page is Merry Horses. You can easily “Like” it (and thereby be connected to me) by clicking in the widget on the right side of this page. Of course you subscribe to this blog to keep in touch too.
2. Accesible Publication
Who’s Who in Equine Compassion
Currently I’m producing a publication to be available online for free and as a very low cost (near or at cost) print book on amazon.com entitled “Who’s Who in Equine Compassion”. First of all each and every one of you should be in this book. Basic Listings are free. Secondly its scope could be easily expanded to include all your researched information as well as additional pieces you provide or curate.Here’s more info about that project right now. I could set up a kickstarter or IndieGoGo campaign to cover the costs of producing this newly expanded (and far more authoritative in my opinion) volume. Or if you’re the leader of one of the larger organizations perhaps you could direct me as to how I could write up a grant for this project directed to that portion of your organization concerned with outreach to offset the costs that fits in with your own Mission and help defray the expenses of enlarging this project.
There is a magazine that accompanied the EquineConnection.org network which you can use to judge the quality of the work I’m proposing to include your work, your organization, your connections in which I’ve linked below:
My name is Marti McGinnis. I live in Kentucky (“Horse Capitol of the World”) and have witnessed a lot of what’s wrong throughout the world of equines. I’ve seen so much of what’s right. I was inspired to go forward with connecting as much of what I find is right in equine stewardship because I am a dreamer and dreamers connect. I’m also fairly savvy when it comes to new media marketing so those are the tools I use; Dreams, Savvy and New Media. I don’t use my own name much because none of this is about me. It’s about the folks walking the walk. So I use the pseudonym Merry Horses to convey the general gist of what I share and get on with sharing news and information and making connections whenever and wherever I can.
I am a dreamer. But I am also something of a realist. Not everyone who considers him or herself a compassionate steward of equines uses the same philosophies as everyone else. In fact I don’t care one bit how people define their compassion. If they say they are; they are. Just as we don’t all agree on how to train a horse, yes? In order to be strong we don’t have to all agree. By believeing we need to be in total agreement we limit our own ability to connect and be strong! But soon enough I think we discover where we actually do find agreement and it is there we increase our potential impact exponentially.
So I stand by not worrying about finding complete agreement within ourselves as a group beyond the need to present a united front on any issues that arise that do unite us. In between times we live and let live. Our portal and publications will not censor involvement, but be as inclusive as possible to set a tone, establish a trend and create a strong deeply rooted foundation. Will we have differences? You bet. And those will be fodder for our individual Pages and Forums. It’s kind of like family, we may not always like what a member of it is doing, but we’ll stand by them when it comes to the important stuff. No one of your organizations can create this consortium – but a “United Nations” of participant organizations and individuals can. Much like the array of people who just came together at the IEC! I’m on board to help you should you like. I’m already doing as much as I can without much help – but we will all be much more effective when we pool some of our outreach efforts.