"Selling used up horses"....sounds like blasphemy...do you not know that all animals (yes, humans are animals) have a Life Force? We are not talking about machines! We don't even talk about the cattle we eat with such irreverence. Let's see.....how many of my neighbors would like to eat horse meat; how many of your neighbors would eat horse meat? "...horses that deserve pampering"; do you consider food, shelter and possibly some health care as pampering? Guess all those Baby Boomers on Medicare are just plain pampered! So, why not toss them some of the used up horsemeat; or better, invite those people on welfare to just throw their used up dogs and cats in the oven...save on food stamps! If your intention was to get feedback, for that you have succeeded; if your intention was to present an intelligent argument for and against horse slaughter...then first of all you are not even in the game and second of all, there will never be an intelligent argument for horse slaughter....my regrets to your publisher.
There's not much to say that hasn't already been said in the above comments. As a former long term employee, my observation is that it's both inexplicable and shameful the way that Mansch and Nealon routinely treat employees. I can't count how many times I heard one of them utter "They've gotta go." Then they would start a campaign to create a hostile and unbearable work environment for that individual. The organization has lost many solid hard working employees due to the two of them. The quality of patient care has suffered as a result, as has the reputation of the organization in the professional community. The mission of Partnership Health Center is too important to let these issues go unaddressed. Kudos for covering this story and to the brave folks putting themselves on the line to make some positive change happen.
How tiresome are these self-indulgent, conscience-driven pieces coming from proponents of (fill in the blank with some manner of exploitation) who search their souls for a moment, examine ramifications beyond themselves in brief passing, then do exactly what benefits them. (In addition to this one, I recall one defending the illegal construction of a visitor center in Wilderness and another about living with the threat of predators after building a house in their habitat).
This writer had an epiphany when she learned about CAFOs--but it was a self-serving epiphany filled with convenient rationalizations. "My desire to understand the life cycle of an animal" - The life cycle? This pig's mom was intentionally bred for profit, and Ms. Bell prematurely ended his life! "...his job on earth was nearly complete." Sadly, these words simply reflect the speciesist attitude that defines the status quo bottom line: treated well or treated badly, animals are nothing more than commodities for human use and consumption. Their "job" is to fulfill our desires.
"It wasn't easy, but I decided to be present at his slaughter." How good of Ms. Bell to make this sacrifice after betraying his affection. "I thanked both him and Elton..." Gag. Perhaps worst of all, "the respect he deserved." Given the choice, what do you suppose Eddie would have rather had--thanks, respect, and a bullet--or to continue living? Why is it so hard for some to understand that sentient animals--all of us--value our lives?
Look, I agree that the pig lived a good life. But "socially responsible meat" exists in the self-delusions of speciesists who won't admit that they're dominated by mere appetite and willing to kill for it. Philosopher Theodor Adorno said, "Auschwitz begins wherever someone looks at a slaughterhouse and thinks: they're only animals." That goes for when the knacker's truck rolls up, too.
As a vegetarian for 26 years (as well as a biologist for 45 years), I would like to thank Lori Bell for writing her story. Allow me to explain.
The last meat I ate was a turkey (Tom) who I had raised from a chick. I, too, thought that if I was going to continue to eat meat I should be absolutely involved in the animal's life and to honor that life, as Lori did with Eddie. I took one step further and did the slaughter as well as the cleaning - after thanking Tom for being our turkey. Problem was I could not do it again and so I put off killing Jerry for Christmas dinner, deciding to wait till Easter. Two weeks before Easter Jerry (now Geraldine) laid an egg and that was all the excuse I needed not to kill her. She lived to be an old bird and gave me delicious eggs every season, naturally. She loved strawberries.
Humans evolved as meat eaters and many other primates eat meat. I do not. I am so far beyond even thinking about it and there is so much nutritious non-meat available that there is no need to eat any critter. At 68 years of age, I am healthy without meat or meds.
So to Lori I say, you are doing it the right way. To others I say, unless you raise it the way Lori did and are involved in its killing it, go veggie. 7 billion humans (and their domestic dogs and cats) eating meat is decimating life on this planet. It is time to acknowledge this.
Wow, Did Sue Wallis ghost write this for you. You either published exaggerated numbers or out falsehoods through out this article. Pure propaganda for a crime ridden industry. You even outright lie about the connection Mr. Sappington HAD to Valley meat. he was a employee that was recently fired after posting a video on You tube (now taken off) of him blowing the brains out of a young horse while looking at the camera using colorful language of what he feels about animal welfare people ( yeh , that’s the kind of local citizen I want living down the road from me). The same plant was forced closed last year for sanitation and animal abuse laws while slaughtering cattle, it’s owned by a gentleman that finds pleasure in robbing peoples homes as a side business (recently caught again).
The horse industry in this county does not need slaughter; it needs breed assocs that don’t instigate overbreeding. Its needs people to take the time to be educated in proper training methods of instead thinking that by watching some cowboy they have become horse trainers. Maybe you should note that one of the largest horse industries in the county does not condone horse slaughter and has been in the process of attempting to end it and ban it from its sport in the last 5 years. The TB Horse racing orgs of prominence. But I guess they don’t know anything about horses like you. Get real, get educated and learn your subject before you write about it.
A police officer told me a few years ago in a candid moment, everybody has a breaking point. My thought was ....even if that is so....inside a person's core there are some things they would never do. You cannot truly guess what is in someone's heart. Whether you are a progressive, conservative, or independent...you have to see that for at least a decade our society seems to be removing the glue that holds us together. Tradition is getting thrown out the window and tech and "anything goes" is the replacement. So even if you can't pinpoint the exact cause, there is plenty out there to make people come unglued.
I am in shock that anyone could kill and then have an appetite to eat a beloved animal much less enjoy it. I lost mine just reading about it. But then I haven't eaten any meat in over 20 years spurred by experiences not unlike this. That meat so hardens our hearts means that no matter how good it tastes, it cannot BE good.
There is no humane way to slaughter horses for meat consumption. We don't take our dogs or cats at the end of their lives to shipping facilities where they are crammed into trucks for arduous and stressful transport to slaughter plants where they are then brutally killed and processed while sometimes still alive for people to eat. And all for a measly few extra bucks. Why would we do that to horses? That is not why horses exist. I hear cat meat tastes good too. That is a morally impoverished excuse to eat them. Moreover, creating horse slaughter for profit would insure an industry interest in and lobbying for having a steady supply of horses to kill thus perpetuating the horse over-population problem from all sources.
"... selling used-up horses rather than paying to keep them alive is a logical choice."
It is not a fact that old, "used up" horses go to slaughter. According to the Chicago Tribune, "The horse slaughter industry doesn't "euthanize" old horses — but precisely the opposite: Young and healthy horses are purchased at auction, often by people misrepresenting their intentions, and sold to slaughter plants..." http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-04…
If there are too many horses, it's because too many horses are created by breeders in it for the money. Industries like racing, rodeo, showing, etc. along with irresponsible small-time breeders create and cull with impunity (see Forbes, "Racing Industry Silent About Slaughtered Thoroughbreds" at
80% of Americans oppose horse slaughter, a brutal and bloody business. Check here for graphically-honest descriptions and images
The NM slaughterhouse mentioned in Ari's piece was originally a cattle slaughterhouse; it was shut down by the Feds for heinously inhumane practices. You can read about what one bull endured on his way to death here, in "A Tale of Two Horses" at http://www.othernationsjustice.org/?p=7857
This post that brought more traffic to the Other Nations website than any other. Please read it and learn how you can support the SAFE Act, a bi-partisan effort in both houses of Congress that will end the bloody, inhumane prospect of horse slaughter once and for all.
There's nothing "humane" about being raped, having her offspring kidnapped, exploiting her reproductive system (milking for some) and then being brutally murdered in the prime of her life - all for some "caring" consumer? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKr4HZ7ukSE and http://www.veganvideo.org
Tens of thousands of 4-H and FFA students (and their families) learn this every summer. It's not a bad thing to be more connected to your food chain and the circle of life.
Anyone, be it the press or public or County comissioners can substantiate the claims made here by looking into the exit interviews of any number of PHC alumni. Unless of course the County Human resource dept. has cleaned out the files, and I don't think even they would be that foolish. I have offered my testimony to the Plaintiffs attorneys and know a lot of others that would be glad to do the same. Time to clean house on Mansch, Nealon and Delgadillo! Make this right!
First and foremost, Hal, an issue has to present itself before an allegation can be made. At least an allegation that a hard-working attorney is going to listen to, reduce to writing, file with the court, and pursue action against an entity. I have yet to see an attorney who files frivolous lawsuits on a contingency basis....knowing they don't get paid unless their client does. Seems as though placing you as a mouthpiece for the facility, has mimicked the attitude that created the complaint in the first place: evasive disregard.
I too am a former PHC employee and can attest to the abhorrent working conditions. Great mission - absolutely horrible management. Ms. Mansch, Ms. Nealon and Ms. Delgadillo have created an extremely hostile work environment and if contacted by the plaintiff attorney's will be happy to provide documentation. The employees who continue to work there truly care about the patients and do a great job while being berated regularly. They live in fear that if they so much as even look cross-wise at one of those three, they will lose their job. And yes, Missoula County HR knows all of this and has turned a blind eye and a deaf ear. I applaud the brave individuals who had the courage to stand up to the bullying knowing full well that their lives are going to be made pure hell. I believe there needs to be an independent external investigation of the management of PHC. It will reveal that it is not just a few current and former employees out to try and make a quick buck. Real change needs to be made in the management.
Thanks for the article. Going through Missoula, and found the Hutchins Hostel in a hostel guide, glad I checked to make sure if it was still open. I hope Missoula gets a new hostel soon! There are some of us from the US who frequent hostels as well.
Hell yah!!! Wish I could have made the meeting and been in the lawsuit, but oh well….I really hope eyes are opened & that justice prevails….do you know how awesome that place would have been without Kim & Mary Jane…..we had amazing people that worked there and cared….what a waste that the county never took into account all the good employees that left there because of the poor management….they knew what was going on and chose to look the other way….you can’t tell me that they didn’t know, because upon exit interviews they got an ear full from many of us….lack of respect for hard working, knowledgeable employees were given no acknowledgement….PHC sucked the life right out of us and caused many employees to go into depression and feel unworthy of themselves….once we left there, wow, the lights & life that returned into our spirits was a refresh to live, love & laugh…PHC is a very dark, evil hole to work in that kind of environment….I feel really bad for the patients as they deserved the best care, but because of being such a high volume facility of seeing many in need, they never got the care individuals deserve….if ever you felt like a number, that place is what you were and are….shame on them….
As a former PHC employee, I too can attest to the abusive and exploitative work environment there. I also had the experience of appealing to Human Resources at the County level and getting absolutely no support. I am glad that these lawsuits are moving forward, and I hope that the complaints will be heard by the community. I still believe in the mission of Partnership Health Center, and the organization's leadership needs to be held accountable for their unethical treatment of employees over the past several years.
Didn't realize this article was so old... Talk about journalistic integrity. But if anyone was curious, Kalispell is still doing fine.
Honest and a bit embarrassed,
I believe this is a very sensationalist article. And you guys are capable of such well rounded, meaningful investigative journalism! 50 extremists will not take over Kalispell's local government, nor will they gain any foothold in the Flathead Valley's future. They are a brittle ecosystem of narrow minded individuals, and like all brittle ecosystems, they will fail given any direct pressure.
I believe in the journalistic integrity of The Missoula Independent and as such I believe a retraction of this article is in the best interest of the paper and its readership. Kalispell and the Flathead Valley are directly apart of the Missoula region. As such, I believe there is a lot of room for more honest journalism in this article. This kind of blatantly slanted writing belongs on MSNBC and Fox News, not the news paper my parents raised me on. I know you can do better, I have seen it myself.
Please be more forward thinking in your journalism! The world is full of reactionary people on all sides of any issue. When you write about: "Are "patriots" and white supremacists forming an anti-government alliance in Kalispell?" You are speaking to the same demographic that responds to, "I am formally making you an invitation to ‘come home’ to the Pacific Northwest." Life is much more complex than one sided opinions, regardless of rhetoric.
Brittle communities of like minded people fail just as fast as brittle, narrow minded independent papers. Don't loose the trust of the intelligent readers that you certainly have.
Regarding Partnership: We are glad to have a place to find affordable care for a young friend who has no insurance, but it's true that we've left many, many phone calls and never once had a reply to a message, and it's adversely affected his medical and dental outcome. I asked the young lady at the dental desk if there was a problem with their phones and was told that more calls come in than she can possibly ever return. The employees we've seen have been kind and hardworking... It's obvious that there is a great need for more staff.
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