Friday, November 5, 2010

Car or Calèche?

Strolling through Old Montréal, which is not so old after all, you would not expect to see horses pulling carriages, often loaded with tourists beyond the limit. You especially would not expect that in 2010 a calèche driver would go so far as to sponsor them with a t-shirt! Cars are harmful to the environment just as much as the carriages are harmful to the horses, but even more so… If the horses were free to choose, they certainly would not be working in the traffic for 9 hours a day or more and live in miserable conditions. Unfortunately they are slaves to an industry whose sole interest is to exploit them for profit.
Many would debate that this is natural for the horses, it’s what they were meant for... it’s their job. The truth is that humans have decided that this be their job and it’s up to us humans to give them back their true nature...their freedom.
Horses in Montréal are “luckier” than their colleagues in NYC or Rome, as the industry here is not so institutionalized, but also thanks to the activism of Anne Streeter and Jean LeMarquand, who have fought endlessly for twenty years to improve their quality of life. We will finish off what they started. All animals should have the right to be free.