OpEd: Interior chief let down horses

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RGJ.com, August 18. 2013, Steven Rose

Jewell receives blessing of Salazar. The tradition continues

Jewell receives blessing of Salazar. The tradition continues

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell said she would look at the National Academy of Sciences’ two-year study of the Bureau of Land Management’s wild horse program and make changes to improve it.

This is the program that cost the BLM $1.2 million. It was labeled “an expensive failure” that did not meet any of its goals. So, what has Jewell and her team at the BLM done? Nothing, just like her predecessor. Her spokesperson stated that “there is no timeline for changes.” So, guess what they did next?

They have scheduled ongoing wild-horse roundups, ignoring all of the facts in the study that they asked for — so let the abuse and killing begin again. Their arrogance and ignorance is offensive to the millions of us who are trying to save these icons of America.

They continue to spend $77 million per year for this failed program that keeps 49,000 wild horses in pens — and yearly ask for increases of about $2 million.

No one in the BLM cares about our horses or is held accountable for the deplorable handling of this program. There are now more wild horses in BLM pens than there are on the open range, where they belong.

Why? That’s an easy one. Because it is more important to them to sell cattle-grazing leases, more than 15,000 of them, oil-drilling leases and mining leases for the cash.

Yes, it is the land of the dollar bill and they think more of the money than they do about the humane treatment of our wild horses. They have come up with every excuse in the book to continue to remove them.

The latest quotes are, “They are starving due to the drought” and, “They are a public safety issue” and, “There is no room for them on the ranges.”

Pure and simple lies. Nevada on its own has more than 70 million acres of land. If you gave every wild horse out there 20 acres of land, they would only be using about 1 million acres — but there is no room, right?

In Carson City, we could put a few on the hundreds of acres right next to the BLM office, where they park the more than 100 cars and trucks for the 70 people that work there. Oops, my mistake; we had 11 horses there, and they rounded them up due to “public safety.”

They are still going to use helicopters and quads and shock prods to gather them and don’t care if a few dozen die along the way.

Thousands of horses have died while under their “care” and no one is listening or caring about how unethical the BLM is, how they bend every rule and do not follow the federal law from The Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro act of 1971.

Wild Horse Annie got helicopters banned and now the government has butchered the law and is about to start butchering the horses once again.

It is just more of the same and Jewell is ignoring it and has just become another person turning a blind eye on a inhumane program handled by irresponsible government dictators.

Steven Rose is a Vietnam veteran and businessman who lives in Carson City.

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AUTHOR: Jerry Finch
20 Comments
  • Arlene

    Maybe she meant that the BLM is a Failure, because it is the Truth !!!!!!! She must have mixed up the Truth, like they always do anyway at the BLM !!!!! hard to believe something that cost 1.2 million filled with experts of the highest caliber are a fail?????? Oh wait a minute , then there is THE HUGH Fail The BLM !!!!

    August 19, 2013
  • Suzanne Dunham

    Sally Jewell…..another loser for wildlife and horses!!!!!!

    August 19, 2013
  • susan carter

    Time to hand horse management over to horse advocates.
    The ‘cow’ boys time is up. Sally Jewell should go back to REI and camping gear for week-enders. The present BLM is only destroying the land and the horses.

    August 19, 2013
  • Arlene

    IT IS A SHAME THAT Sally Jewell is not what the Mustangs need in their corner, She is a Huge Fail for them……………………Sure wish REP Raul Grijalva would have gotten this appt…..I am sold on him, he has been more then a friend to Our Mustangs !!!!!!!! For Many , many Years …………

    August 19, 2013
  • Jan Schultz

    It is exactly what you said – PURE AND SIMPLE LIES!

    All to hide the money and land is simply being transferred from the coffers of the public trust to the greedy hands of civil servants to do with as they see fit.

    August 19, 2013
  • Joyce Good

    Isn’t it time to march on Washington?? There are enough people that would go. Why can we have a million horse march!!! Time we stood our ground and show the people of America we mean business. How can they ignore you ?? That would bring in the press!! Oh yea this would be for all those wanta be politicians living off of the people to do something and stop this ! Like their free trade and lots of millions they leave Washington with. We pay for the kids to go to college we pay for all there traveling around !

    August 19, 2013
    • LNorman

      There was a protest in DC few years ago. Police hovered over the protestors and they were banned from Dept of Interior Bldg steps. There were not enough people at this protest. It is amazing that 50 yrs ago, before social media, that so many marched on Washington (took less than 8wks to organize that march!) for freedom and jobs but not enough people will stand up for the vanishing wild horses whether in DC or at a roundup. 500-1000 people need to go to a roundup and block the trap pens, have the media there for protection, and make a stand against injustice. People might get arrested. So what, we will raise bail. Civil disobedience is the only path to change any injustice.

      August 30, 2013
      • Arlene

        Dear LNorman, I believe you are correct , we need to unite and go there to DC….. we have tried all other methods, i also believe we should have done this 10 yrs ago…………….

        August 31, 2013
  • Myra

    And the horses plea falls on deaf ears again :(

    August 19, 2013
  • Kathleen Hayden

    Until the courts and our elected officials enforce the laws the rogue agencies will continue to “culturally cleanse” our wildlife treasures of wild horse and burro herds. The guv has no jurisdiction to manage herd animals OFF of our cultural landscapes. Capture, adoption and sales constitutes conversion of public resources and violation of the public wildlife trust, ESA special status species, NEPA, FLPMA, NHPA sec 106, and Free Roaming wild horse and burro Act. The waste, fraud and abuse of taxpayer dollars has been approved by Senator Feinsteins Appropriation committee. USFWS is responsible for violations of the Endangered Species Act. All elected officials have an oath to uphold the nations laws….our wildlife laws date back to the Magna Carta. HOW many of your elected representatives are aware of the wild horse and burro TAX SUPPORTED INDUSTRY????

    August 19, 2013
    • LNorman

      Amen. They are ALL criminals and this is a Kleptocracy not Democracy. They are stealing our horses, poisoning our land, air, water, killing all native wildlife for pursuit of their private profits leaving NOTHING for future generations.

      August 30, 2013
  • Sue

    Who’s got the wire cutters?

    August 19, 2013
    • Arlene

      Dear Sue !!!!I will purchase as many as we need !!!!!!

      August 19, 2013
  • Rhonda Lanier

    I don’t want her “to look at it” I want her to actually do something about it. President Obama, got just what he wanted in appointing her: another female appointed, and someone who will continue in the same cruel, irresponsible, heartless way Ken Salazar did. Obama has sold his soul to Big Oil as far as I am concerned. God in heaven I just hope we have any wildlife left at all when this man has to vacate the White House. What a legacy he is leaving for his children.

    August 19, 2013
  • Sharon Jacobs-Salinas

    Sally Jewell let us all down and the wild ones! She’s a clone of Salazar!

    August 19, 2013
  • Nancy B

    It’s obvious none of “them” give a damn about the wild horses. And recent events over the weekend further prove they really can’t even get away with pretending to give a damn anymore. I’ve read so many comments from many sources, ideas from cutting the fence to literally blocking the trucks from crossing the border, and protests. Why isn’t this on the national news? What’s it going to take to stop all of this insanity and cruelty?! I can write and share about how sad I am, how I’ve cried, lost sleep, how discouraged I am, the new and very sad-sad-sad shame I feel for even being part of the same human race that so callously and systematically destroy all that is good in our (our???) county. And the new disgust I feel that American Indians, for a few lousy bucks, are slaughtering the very animals that up until now were considered sacred! And a strange sense of shame that some of the blood running through my veins is that of American Indian. I feel utterly helpless, unable to do anything more than make phone calls with pleas falling on deaf ears. This whole situation is sickening, feels hopeless. I know it’s not about how I feel. It’s about the horses. Soon the wild horses and burros will all be gone. And for what? Cattle grazing permits? Mining? Yep, selfish, greedy SOBs couldn’t care less about the horses and burros on public land, or any land for that matter. Public land… what does that even mean anymore?

    One thing we should all do, regardless of our personal dining preferences is to STOP EATING BEEF! Yep stop supporting and encouraging the cattle industry. Eliminate their need for welfare grazing permits on “public” land.

    August 19, 2013
    • Arlene

      Dear Nancy B , there isnt a one of us who doesnt feel as you do, the mustangs represent everything i thought about America, their PRIDE , MAGNIFICENCE , POWER, COURAGE, THEY ARE VIRTUALLY FILLED WITH THE REAL VALUES THAT MAKE ME SWELL WITH PRIDE AND TAKE MY BREATH AWAY… I also have lost many nites Sleep worrying about the Mustangs…….

      August 20, 2013
  • Monika Courtney

    The course of the schemes continue. The workshop in Reno, the deplorable conditions of holding while they pretend they apply humane animal husbandry standards, and appease the increasing national outrage with a Delphi style workshop… the constant deception while we pay for the hell the animals must endure at the hands of BLM. It is time for a revolution, America must wake up. We get fracked to sickosphere, the disregard for all of us and our future generations speak volumes. Perhaps boycott REI ? BLM has mocked the public for decades. The current administration… what have they done for the horses ever ? Empty promises while he was a Senator. This country is doomed with lies and hypocrits who mock all of us and abuse our horses. I have seen the neglect at PVC two weeks ago. It’s real, yet they tell you they do things on the books… just which one ? There is no guideline for holding. Holding resembles feedlots. Horses have not even basic foot care. No salt licks or minerals. $ 78 million per year for this farce program. 47 % to holding… in which the animals are reduced to rocks. The haste in which BLM conducts more “emergency” round ups yet Jewells is all silent on all and any of this mess, should tell you we are just flushed down the toilet of ignorance. It’s time for a change, and it will require every one of us to take it to higher people, to draw awareness and expose the schemes, whether they want to see them or not.

    August 20, 2013
    • LNorman

      Yup America is one big giant hypocrite with the nerve to pretend to be such an upstanding world citizen. Other countries are standing up against their corrupt governments but we are complacent and continue to pay our taxes enabling our corrupt government to destroy whatever they want.

      August 30, 2013