Column: Tribes support New Mexico horse slaughtering plant

Columnist on the use of horse meat in Indian Country:
The most ironic argument against a slaughterhouse for unwanted horses is that the noble animal is a western icon, a star in the Taming of the West. Somebody needs to read more history. To pioneers, the army and Indian tribes, horses were transportation. When a horse was used up, it was eaten: Meat's meat.

Comanches, Apaches and other warriors slid to the side of a running horse and fired, using the horse as shield. It was considered extraordinary horsemanship, not mistreatment. And while they prized their horses, tribes ate horse and mule as readily as cattle and bison. And still do. To this day, when a reservation family needs the meat and money's short, I'm told, a horse fills the bill. My husband has eaten horse stew as a guest on the Navajo Reservation on several occasions. (Tastes like beef, he says.)

So when advocates insist that in our society eating horsemeat is just not done, they might remember that American society includes people who do eat horses. Which is why several tribes side with the American Quarter Horse Association, some livestock associations and some horse rescue groups in supporting domestic slaughter of horses as a more humane solution than shipping them to Mexico.

Get the Story:
Sherry Robinson: They shoot horses, don't they? (The Farmington Daily Times 5/14)

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Oglala Sioux Tribe explores opening of horse slaughtering plant (4/18)
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