Irish-Operated Carriage Horses -- A Stroll in the Park or Slave Labor?

Antrim-born actor Liam Neeson is calling upon fledgling New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio to step back from hizzoner's commitment to ban carriage horses from the streets of the city.

Photo by Victoria Pickering, Creative Commons license

The carriage trade has, for well more than a century, been largely an Irish franchise, and Neeson has issued his most stinging critique of what he suggests is De Blasio's hypocrisy on the issue, threatening the livelihoods of hundreds of working class carriage drivers and stable hands. You can read more about it in Irish Central.

My question to everyone: Are horses ill used as they pull these colorful carriages around Manhattan's Central Park, or are they treated with the respect and care they deserve?

Tags: Horses, Labor, New York, United States

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Religion and slavery - the perfect match!  Your cruel argument, Judith, was used to support slavery.  If you believe your god gave you two feet, use them!  A horse is not created for you to use.  He evolved.  Sentimental Irish love to say how the Irish LOOOOVE horses.  Prove it!  Stop forcing them to drag carriages through New York City's exhaust fumes, noise, and dangers.  We Irish need to be more compassionate and less sickeningly sentimental!

Gael,

Didn't the book of Genesis say that God gave man dominion over all the animals of earth?  

Do you really think horses don't understand work and being useful?  

You can see an occasional rig with horse in Dublin and Limerick and elsewhere in Ireland. In some cases, the owner is going grocery shopping, and in other cases these are for hire by tourists.  In some cultures, still today, men pull carts (rickshaws) as their only means to make a living.  It is what they know and what they want to do.  There are also bike and auto rickshaws more commonly in use now.  

If you want to see horses being abused look to the parades such as the Rose Parade where high-spirited horses are heavily sedated to keep them in control.  You can see them drooling and lathered into a deep sweat doing their tricks just to amuse the masses.

I really think you have this one way wrong.

Your response is based on a fallacy.  The fact that other types of exploitation are common, does not excuse THIS abuse of horses. And NO, no god gave anyone the right to enslave the other animals. Yours is another example of religion promoting the abuse of the other animals.  Don't support bullies!  Or is being Irish an excuse to hurt others?

If horses can be "enslaved", then they are people. If they are people, we must immediately extend full voting rights to them.

Like human babies?  Can't we be kind to those who are NOT human?  Is that so impossible for you?

A doctor went to school because he wanted to be a doctor.  Leave your god out of it!  Humans are enslaving horses in terrible, abusive, neglectful, and dangerous conditions.  How can you pretend that his cruel treatment is voluntary?  And yes, I would tell a priest to stop preaching, if he is teaching the same heartless message of dominion and abuse you have offered us here!

It's a good thing his honor wasn't elected Mayor of Bird in Hand, PA. He'd be puttin all the Amish farmers out of work! There is even evidence of a lack of romance in in this "newbe" mayor's heart, must be he and his she never took the ride in the park like millions of everyday Americans. The Parade Committee should put an image of himself at the reins of a carriage in the parade.
Blackthorn

Set up animal welfare inspections and resume the business. This is nothing but a silly feel-good measure designed to curry favor with De Blasio's little political pets. What next? Ban the keeping of all pets because NYC doesn't have enough green space for them to run free 12 hours a day?

Mr Neeson will be on Jimmy Fallon tonight and the subject of the horse and carriage business and his defense and support of this noble profession will be discussed. In my prior post I implied there is a "real story behind the story". The link below explains Mr de Blasio's connection to (NYCLASS) who have wanted this land the stables reside on for quite some time. I hope this read enlightens you .. Tommy D

http://www.frontpagemag.com/2014/dgreenfield/liam-neeson-blasts-bil...

Lots of overseers in the cotton fields, and slave holders in the U.S. were also Irish.  Should all Irish people, including those of us with compassion and ethics, also have upheld the "rights" of these cruel men?  NO! The slavery of the horses used to pull carriages is abomnible! Pointing out that most of the men responsible for abusing these horses are Irish makes me feel deeply ashamed!  Irish with ethics speak out against injustice - EVEN when it's profits fill the pockets of other Irish people! 

Well, there are loonies on this web site, too. Horses are not held in slavery any more than any other work animal is. Loony is loony, though, and loonies will insist on trying to get others to subscribe to their delusions. Horses are horses, not humans. If using horses to pull carts is "slavery", then horses must be given the right to vote. It's that simple.

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