I urge everyone to boycott beef. No I’m not a vegetarian, that’s not the reason. My reason is that our wild horses and burros who usually run free on the range are being eliminated by helicopter roundups by the Bureau of Land Management. After they’re rounded up, they’re penned where there is no grazing, only dirt. In an unnatural division, stallions are penned with stallions, mares with mares, colts and foals are taken from the mother, families are broken up. The horses are auctioned off to the highest bidder, sometimes to known “kill buyers.” A news article recently revealed that almost 1800 horses of an Oregon roundup, were sold to a man who was known by the BLM as a kill buyer. He shipped the horses to Mexico where they were slaughtered. The worst part is, it isn’t the first time for him and there are hundreds more like him.
The 1971 Wild and Free Roaming Horses and Burros Act
For a number of years the cattle ranchers have grazed their cattle on public lands. These lands belong to American citizens, and as such are protected territory for wildlife. Wild horses make their homes on the range, and a law enacted in 1971 says “That Congress finds and declares that wild free-roaming horses and burros are living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West; that they contribute to the diversity of life forms within the Nation and enrich the lives of the American people; and that these horses and burros are fast disappearing from the American scene.” It further states: “It is the policy of Congress that wild free-roaming horses and burros shall be protected from capture, branding, harassment, or death; and to accomplish this they are to be considered in the area where presently found, as an integral part of the natural system of the public lands.”
This law has been amended numerous times, depending on the character of those serving in the government. The following is a list of where those amendments were made: Sections 1332 and 1333 were modified by the Public Rangelands Improvement Act of 1978 (Public Law 95-514); Section 1338 was modified by the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (Public Law 94-579); the Omnibus Parks and Public Lands Management Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-333) added Section 1338a.; and Section 1333 was again modified by the Fiscal Year 2005 Omnibus Appropriations Act (Public Law 108-447)
The fact is that due to amendments and interpretations, the original bill isn’t as solid in its protection of the horses and burros on the range. Each Congress and Senate makes their own determination of how much or how little they want to protect them. That depends to a great extent on their involvement with the powerful cattle ranchers lobby in Washington.
Why Boycott Beef?
If less beef is eaten, the cattle ranchers will soon have difficulty selling enough and will be forced to cut back the size of their herds, instead of increasing them as they are now doing. They will make less money, thereby making the expense or raising them unfeasible. At the same time, you become healthier and the horses and burros have a place to roam as they should have all along. Not only that, but with less demand the price of beef will go down. It’s a win/win all the way around.
Urge Your Friends: Start a Movement!
There are things you can do to help this boycott get rolling. First, talk to your friends and impress upon them that America’s iconic wild horses are being annihilated. Every year more and more are taken off the range, and shipped to stand out in inclement weather in a pen. When they get more than the pen can hold they have an auction. This auction will sell horses to anyone who has the money whether they are known to the BLM as kill buyers or not. They just want them gone. Second, start a movement of people in your community who will show up and protest each time BLM has a roundup. No, you don’t have to get arrested. You can protest with numbers, without violence, letting the media see your concern for the horses. For that matter, if you or your family are connected with media, TV, Magazines, newspapers, etc. or if you know someone who is, get them involved in the movement too. Plaster your fears and concerns in every place you’re allowed with home made posters. Doesn’t have to be professional, but if you can handle the fee, so much the better. DO something to stop this infernal tampering with our wild horse herds.
These are links to my articles about this terrible way of treating our wild horses:
These are sources I’ve used for information for this article: