Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Winter's worst sights

A winter day in New York City is also a day for wearing buttons: one showing "FUR" with a diagonal line through it, and one about saving the carriage horses. (Who in his/her right mind needs a ride in a carriage drawn by a horse . . . in New York City . . . on a frigid January day? Beyond that, who ever needs such a ride?)

The furs were out there in force -- on women who would have been just as warm in layers and cloth coats. One woman at a museum looked to be wearing her big sister's fur coat, it was that voluminous and long. Another wore a high, rounded fur hat as she chatted with friends.

(My courage deserted me: I couldn't think of an effective way to talk to these fur-wearing women about what their garments cost the animals who originally wore the fur, without being screamed at or hit. So what does a coward do? she frowns, glowers, hisses inside . . .)

And the poor dear carriage horses. While their muffled-up drivers looked straight ahead, the horses made their way along the streets, looking to me like miserable slaves who had absolutely no escape till death -- a fate some of them have already experienced prematurely. What temperature does it take to let them stay off the streets for a day? Who looks out for the horses' welfare?

If I had $1 million -- or billion? -- I'd close down the cruel anachronism of "horse drawn cabs" and put all the horses now involuntarily involved out to pasture. I can picture them now, running free in green meadows.

Which prompts this question: what would you do first for animals if you had unlimited funds? What one thing would you do to make a positive difference?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What comes to mind first is the media. I would buy television stations showing, on prime time, the use and abuse of the creatures sharing our planet by the hands of humans. This would include the much watched cooking shows. They would have to film what actually takes place from beginning to end the meal in which they so proudly display beginning with the slaughter of the animal to be cooked right down to the added parsley presentation. CJ