Misconceptions of horse slaughter

Texas representatives should have said "Naay" to House Bill 1324.

What most people are unaware of is that there are only two plants left in the United States, and both are here in our great state of Texas. These plants are foreign-owned. Did I say, "French- and Belgian-owned?" Last year, these plants slaughtered 42,312 horses brought to them by "killer buyers." These plants made more than $40 million slaughtering our American horses.

Rep. Betty Brown of Kaufman County, where one of the plants is located, authored this bill. A major misconception held by Brown and others is that the slaughter houses only slaughter old, sick and crippled horses. The is just not true. Ninety-two percent of the horses that are sent to slaughter are in good to excellent condition. I have been to the auctions where the killer buyers go to make their slaughter purchases. They want to buy the horses that will bring them a good price. I don't think old, skinny and sick fall into that category.

A French horsemeat buyer was quoted as saying: "I only buy American meat, which is red and firm. In butchering terms, we call it `well-structured,' the best you can get. Out of a thousand animals, only the American ones are really worth buying. But they don't eat horsemeat in America. They raise horses for foreigners."

If HB 1324 passes through the Texas Senate, it will be a sad day for Texas and the United States, for it is out of step with the beliefs and principles of the vast majority of Americans.

Julie Caramante, Pearland