Animals are not “ours”

Published 25 April 2024

A brief glimpse into the terror and trauma animals regularly experience

Horses bolting through the streets of London, smeared in blood – a sight some onlookers initially thought must be a film shoot.

Our public spaces are so carefully sanitised of the endless violence perpetrated against animals, that when a rare moment of truth explodes into the general consciousness, it’s very telling how that experience is framed.

An outpouring of support and concern from well-meaning people, have called for the horses to be retired to a loving sanctuary, where they can live out their days in peace. As members of the Household Cavalry (British Army) they have ‘served their country” and deserve to rest.

At the local race track, many other horses are forced to race and hurdle, where a broken leg will result in a bullet to the head behind a flimsy screen, lest the public be ‘inconvenienced’. This reality is so common that punters will cheerfully continue sipping champagne and placing bets on the next victims.

In restaurants and homes throughout the world, a holocaust of violence is presented upon plates and in cups, the contents an abstraction of body parts and secretions from animals who lived in terror and anguish for most of their short, miserable lives. Unlike the horses running through the London streets, these animals’ very existence will be carefully hidden and obfuscated behind a veil of polite agreement that it is a necessary evil.

Bear witness to the fear and desperation for freedom these horses have shown us. Think of the billions of animals desperate for that same freedom and don’t look away this time.

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