29 August 2015

Horse Sense

Shortly after taking office, New York City's Mayor Bill De Blasio seemed to make the banning of horse-drawn carriages in Manhattan his primary mandate. As it seems with just about everything these days in the U S of A, there are extremely vocal groups arguing for, groups just as vocal arguing against, and probably a group thousands of times larger than both groups combined who are completely unaware of or apathetic to the cause.

On the issue, I'm not sure where I stand beyond preferring to cease any cruelty to animals if there's any cruelty to be ceased. I'm neither equine rights fanatic nor starry-eyed lover of the iconic horse-drawn carriages of NYC, fondly remembering lusty fondling beneath the blanket in the back of a brougham, driver oblivious to—or jaded and uncaring of—passengers stoking (and stroking) the boilers of libido just a few feet aft. (It does prompt one to wonder what sort of juices might be all over those blankets, and the frequency of laundering. And you thought cheap motel bedspreads lit up under long-wave ultraviolet light.) For me, they're there in the background, a part of the cityscape that has always been; if I ever did ride in one, the experience was so non-important that I don't remember it. But I might miss them, perhaps by proxy for others, since deep down I guess I really don't personally give a shit, horse or other, were they to be gone.

I do remember reading about the horses of New York City some time back, perhaps in the New Yorker magazine, and if memory serves, the piece pronounced the whole thing humane, the stables clean, the staff caring and attentive, the horses, like the people and pets of the city, hardened to and apparently not traumatized by the cacophony about them. On second thought, maybe that was about the horses of the mounted police. And in Time.


Once removed from the streets, will we come to learn that the horses' fate was to be slaughtered and re-purposed into dog food? I suppose, if they are miserable in their lives as carriage slaves, it might be a relatively quick and humane release from their living hell. We can still tell all the little kids and horny lovers that they were transported to farms upstate and are living their remaining years in relaxed bliss, eating five-star oats and hay and banging or being banged by super-hot country fillies and stallions.

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