Heat Meeting Response
After rereading attached announcement from the city of Charleston, I’m reluctant to participate in this meeting for several reasons.
- The outcome of the meeting is already stated in the meeting announcement. The only question is how much limitations will be increased. This is already a done deal.
- The outcome will be determined based on what other cities do. What about the things we do and have done that no other city does? Taking the temperature of each animal after each tour, the return of every animal to the barn after every tour, and the years of records inspected by the city all support our heat protocol system. This is a proven system with a proven record and its effectiveness should be the determining factor in any decision to change it.
- The makeup of this group is unacceptable. What can local residents and a local meteorologist offer in the way of expert advice on the ability of the animals to work in the heat? All they can offer are opinions when there are years of records available that validate our position. Considering the stated goal, methodology, and makeup of this group, I have little to offer.
- The inclusion of the CAS in this group is unacceptable. Elmore denies wanting to ban carriages, yet the CAS has publicly supported such a ban and encouraged others to do so. In their recent newspaper ad, Mr. Elmore identifies heat and load weight as problems that must be addressed. Until he produces evidence to support his charges, I do not want to engage him. The CAS has `pronounced me guilty until proven innocent. I have hard evidence that supports my position and believe that my detractors must provide the same.
- The exclusion of the veterinarian who treats and cares for my animals. Citing a conflict of interest Mr. Riccio has excluded her participation. Like any doctor, veterinarians take a professional oath. The implication that my veterinarian, the person most familiar with my animals, their care, and their treatment, is lacking in the ethical standards of her profession is repugnant. If conflict of interest is of concern to the city remember the CAS, publicly advocates a carriage ban and is the recipient of significant contributions from anti-carriage advocates. This certainly reaches some level of conflict of interest.
- Mob rule seems to be the order or the day. In the old west, a group of drunken cowboys would decide that a prisoner was guilty, ignore the law, and hang him. This committee as described in the city announcement sounds like a 21st century lynch mob, already having decided to hang us, and invited us to the discussion of “how high”.