The Kentucky Deathby brings together thousands. Dressed to the nines. A plethora of over priced dresses accompanied by gaudy hats and a mint julep in every hand. Such is the uniform of empty souls who ignorantly cheer on animals painfully exerting themselves. These hypocrites have every insinuation of prestige but no class at all. Their frolicking and enjoying of their libations reminds me not of a pleasurable social gathering but a disguised type of purgatory. Where the egos in attendance reveal their own pitiful shortcomings by outwardly expressing their lack of humanity toward innocent beings in a legal but sinful way. In an altered reality, where horse could over power man, one would revile in watching the likeness run around a track while being beat with a whip. Deemed the “Sport of Kings” by the British aristocracy and royalty this is nothing more than an insecure attempt to assume control over another being to entertain the nonexistent souls of the audience. We idiotically wave our tickets, cheering on for those two minutes with hopes of pocketing winnings. We disregard truth to experience brief anticipation. The rush of having picked a winning or losing horse is just another reason to celebrate with alcohol, regardless. We are a culture inebriated on denial. A mockery well explored in Hollywood’s ,The Hunger Games. Like voyeurs in a bubble with an awareness of the external truths, we refuse to turn away. Eyes glued to the “game” unable to disengage. No matter if causing pain or death, we watch to feed our urge to feel satisfied.
Our “modern” celebrity obsessed culture is only concerned with marquee names: Jordan, Armstrong, Bryant, Barbaro, Beckham and Woods. These “heros” mislead by drawing attention to arenas of life that are inconsequential to human relevance. As seen in any Hall of Fame, an ego mausoleum with no purpose then to embed legacy. Places such as this hold remnants of memorabilia that serve no purpose for greater humanity. Place cards of false pretension and unbridled ego until the next superstar comes along. For every child that buys a Bryant jersey, there are millions of broken dreams trying to obtain the sense of celebrity accomplishment. For the Barbaro monument statue at Churchill Downs, there are thousands of unsung equine lives that have been taken due to harsh demands we put on them as a culture. We have become so ingrained with this false ideal that we loose sight of the importance of actual lives at steak (pun intended).
Barbaro was famous for winning the Kentucky Derby in 2007 but it wasn’t as publicized as his fall two weeks later at the Preakness that shattered his leg. For months it was plastered over magazines, newspapers, TV and websites as onlookers tuned into the drama like a soap opera episode awaiting the news to see if he would make it. Alas, he shared the fate of thousands of other race horses before him and was euthanized.
Now for the toll. 800 dead. 3,500 injured. I am not talking about wartime causalities. These numbers represent the violence of an American pastime called horse racing. Don’t be fooled. From the animals perspective there is nothing sweet about a business that forces earning ones right to live… over and over and over. Horses that cannot make the cut either suffer from their own excursion or a slaughter sentence. Not one equine, no matter unknown or famous, ever escapes this fate. Let me tell you about Ferdinand. When the champion, whose credentials included winning the Kentucky Derby, was no longer useful as a stud became a notable meal to the Japanese.
No other sport contributes the same amount of deaths and cruelty yet we keep perpetuating it by attending races, hosting and attending race day parties and choosing to celebrate the lie of this egocentric sport. We believe its okay to subject others into cruelty. You may disagree as you are not the accomplice but only the "innocent" spectator but think about this… is it okay if we witness an old lady cornered in an alley getting robbed and keep walking. Turn a blind eye. You had nothing to do it with it, so why is it “my” problem? That attitude is the exact problem with society. It’s everyone’s problem. Do you believe in free-will? It our choice whether or not support this. Is your own identity so lost at sea with the rest or is it that you the lack a sense of self, compassion or just plain common sense?
Have you changed your tune? Are you ready to stop this is? Well you can by ending any patronizing to race tracks, lobby against new tracks from being built, sharing information about the truth of using animals for entertainment (ie. Horse racing, Dog racing, Circus, Zoos) and when possible donate to reputable sanctuaries that rescue these amazing athletes so they can be saved from a gruesome fate.