Why we're here

We are taking a stand against horse slaughter returning to the US and are striving to stop the transportation of horses to other countries for slaughter. Some of us are working in those other countries as well.

We are taking this stance as Pagans and Heathens, at a time when it seems some have decided that eating slaughtered horse meat in ritual is somehow cool, edgy and "ancestral." Therefore we want to show that that minority does not represent all of the Pagan and Heathen communities. Many of us worship Horse Deities, many of us are horse people who may see our horses as sacred charges who we care for to honor these Deities. Not by killing but by striving to give them good lives.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

That Pagans Ate Horses Thing... Again!

In midst of the on going battle, the publicity of the European horse meat findings and the Oklahoma horse slaughter laws and following year which saw a new rise in US horses being slaughtered. Medievalist.net published a post about how Christians reviled horse meat as "pagan food."   This link has been going around the Pagan and Heathen social networks, often without real commentary from those posting it.

Fortunately, many comments I've seen (but it might have to do with the sort of people I choose to associate with and actually pay attention to) have been "well, yeah, whatever, I have plenty of reason to not eat horse meat all the same, thank you." (okay, not all are so politely put)  However, the people Lysippe has posted about before, well, eat this sort of thing up and are promoting this post as an excuse to start bringing up eating horse meat as a ancient Heathen practice and promote horse slaughter.Some others fall in between, mostly I think because for growing number of people horses are ideas, not animals. Maybe they even saw one once, but the fact that these are living beings who humans have had an interrelationships with for tens of thousands of years is just not real to them.

The Medieval.net post is, of course, specific to Anglo-Saxon England, of course. While I have some knowledge of Norse and Germanic practices, and there does seem to have been a good deal of horse eating there, I have a stronger background in the Celtic cultures. There is evidence of horse eating among the Pre-Christian Celts as well, although it is sparse and seems to have only been during specific rituals, not as part of the regular diet. It also is often in conjunction with ritual dog eating. (see for example, Miranda Green, Celtic Myths, University of Texas Press, 1993, pg. 61) I don't see a lot of people calling for the return of eating dogs to prove how Pagan they are.  Of course, our Pagan ancestors also did human sacrifice and took heads. There are just simply things we don't need to bring back.

There's a serious disconnect with the concept of eating horse meat as a sacred act and horse slaughter that those who are all happy about horse killing are not getting. Namely the sacred part. Our relationship with the horse has changed, we no longer depend on them, the way these people are thinking of killing them is far closer to Slaughterhouse Sue than the ancients would have. To kill a horse during the Iron Age would have meant killing a lifeline. It would not  have been taken lightly.

Even when these would be horse "sacrificers" talk about doing it themselves (because they don't understand the laws being discussed, to begin with) they show this great disconnect. In a friend's FB post awhile back one such person was going on about how "as soon as it was legal" he was going to buy a horse and kill "it." He actually made it quite clear, he wasn't going to have anything else to do with the horse. He'd just buy "it" and kill "it." Disassociated and cowardly.  But then others who know that the law is about slaughterhouses, about strangers running horses through chutes, cutting them up while they're still alive and awake, where they don't have too actually see it done, feel that that's just dandy way to get their "sacred meat." 

If you really want to honor the our ancestors' relationship with horses, you need to start with the actual relationship.  You need to start with caring for the animal, communicating with him or her. We need to start by creating the sacred relationship.Honor the Horse Goddesses by taking care of the horses. And there is no reason to move towards killing the animal to prove anything. But until an actual sacred bond is made, if you want to make an excuse to joyfully kill someone's pet that you bought with a lie, the remember that deep down some of us really want to bring back headhunting.

If eating someone's pet doesn't trigger any ethical response in you, do consider that you'll be eating a poisoned pet. We all routinely give medications which permanently make our horses unsafe for human consumption. Some of us who prefer to use more natural methods will at least sometimes opt for those poisons just for this reason. But most horse owners do not look for alternatives, anyway, the odds are high. You're looking at huge increase in cancer risk as well as an incurable blood disease. All so you can feel speshul.

Honestly, I wish I could be more eloquent on this, more persuasive, but the fact that there are people having a fucking happy dance over the idea of killing horses as some sort of proof of their Pagan status make me sick and furious beyond words. Literally beyond words. I'm not any happier seeing Christians use this ancient history to further revile us...and the two together are some sort of sick joke. So any Pagan posting on this and not taking a strong stand that we do not want to bring horse eating back is beneath contempt to me as well. Our horses are being tortured, if you don't stand against it, you're a part of their suffering.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Oklahoma slaughter bills and British Lasagna

I've been bad about maintaining this, so I assume that most of you have other, better sources, and know about the uproar in Britain and Ireland and then several other European countries with horse meat found in various "beef" products, including in fancy steakhouses, fast food restaurants, packaged products and more packaged products and schools. 'Bute tainted meat at that (face it, you eat horse meat you ARE eating the extremely dangerous drug).

Meanwhile, Oklahoma is well on it's way to bringing horse slaughter back to the US. To bring not only torture and hell for horses, not only 'bute tainted food to those who either deserve it or are unwittingly eating what they think is beef, but also crime, poverty and pollution to their neighborhoods.

I have been signing petitions, written letters and called the OK Gov's office.   I hope you are too.  You can find out more at Shut down Oklahoma Horse Slaughter Bills SB375 & HB1999.

Of course, we desperately need to get the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act going. But first, it appears, we need to get a new bill STARTED. Since the 2011 bill died this January, I have been unable to find anything about it. Write your Reps., tell them we want it and we want it DONE this time!  We can't keep fighting this a state at a time, we need to get this finished once and for all on the national level. Then there is no recourse, no way these money grubbing scumbags can push through.  And, yeah, if they do go ahead in OK, then I'll  rejoice at the financial disaster it will be for them because of their cruel shortsightedness.