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LETTERS: Banning carriage rides in Chicago does the horses no favors

Carriage driver Rich Capalbo and his horse "Fredo" turn onto Chicago Ave. from Michigan Ave., on March 30, 2011. l Sun-Times Library

I’m a long-time horse owner. I’ve been reading that Chicago Ald. Brendan Reilly plans to introduce legislation to ban carriage horse rides from city streets. If Ald. Reilly cares about people and horses, he should drop that idea. Besides the obvious loss of jobs such a ban would result in, it also would not help the horses.

A horse without a job is usually a horse without a home and someone to care for him. What does the alderman think will happen to those horses? If he believes the animal-rights lie that they will go to a sanctuary to live happily ever after, then he should do a little research into the horse industry in this country. There are more horses than there are homes, and adding more out-of-work horses will only exacerbate the situation. Homeless horses end up at auction, and most get picked up by kill buyers.

The alderman should also defer to experienced horsemen to “speak” for the horses. The Horsemen’s Council of Illinois has already weighed in to say the temperature restrictions being sought — for when a carriage horse could be worked — were ridiculous. Why would anyone listen to a bunch of noisy, clueless activists ? Try using facts instead of feelings when creating new regulations.

Barbara Steever, Barto, Pennsylvania

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An alternative to a Palestinian vote

In a Sun-Times opinion piece this past weekend, Sheena Anne Arackal suggested that “it is time for the Palestinians to demand the right to vote in the state that has ruled them for over half a century.”

Why not another alternative? Why shouldn’t Palestinians reaccept Jordanian citizenship, which they rejected in 1988? Jordan is part of the historic territory of Palestine. Jewish residency was banned there in 1922, and for all intents and purposes it became the Arab state in Palestine. Why establish a second Arab state in Palestine?

Confederation or self-autonomy under Jordanian tutelage would solve all problems: no Arab need move, internal municipal matters will be overseen by themselves and all foreign elements would be the responsibility of the Kingdom.

The Palestine Liberation Organization and its terror group, Fatah, were established in 1964, before there were any “settlements” or a so-called “occupation,” which appeared in 1967. Obviously, they did not want their own country, but rather to deny Jews their own. Let them prove self-governing capability first.

Yisrael Medad, Shiloh, Israel

Going backward on “organic” agriculture

The Trump administration ruled on Friday that animals raised for food under the “USDA Organic” label need not be treated any less cruelly than those in conventional farming. The decision reverses years of U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, which held that the “organic” label should impose minimal ethical, health, and environmental standards. For the animals, this included adequate space, light, and access to the outdoors.

Under the Trump administration, this will no longer be the case. “Organic” farm operations will be allowed to cram laying hens five to a small wire cage that tears out their feathers and to grind or suffocate millions of male chicks at birth because they don’t lay eggs. Mother pigs will spend their miserable lives in tight metal crates, as their babies are torn from them and mutilated with no anesthesia. And dairy cows will continue to cry for their babies torn from them at birth, so we can drink their milk.

Caring consumers opting for “organic” animal products, to reduce their role in subsidizing these abuses, will now have no choice but to switch to plant-based foods, including the widely available nut- and grain-based meats, milks, cheeses, and ice creams.

Claude Prescott, West Town