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who's gonna ride dr. cosa's wild horses?

judge wopner

TRIBE Member
In February of this year a Horse belonging to the Toronto Police Force was killed in a hit and run incident. His name was Brigadeir.

Alot of media attention surrounded the killing of this horse. I guess people really love horses that much.

Its understandable, for some odd reason riding horses reminds me of all that is noble and mighty of colonial Britian, how men in horses once rode into battle and how little girls the world over have often been drawn to horses.

To be honest I dont really like horses any more than say giraffes or dogs. They are large and beautiful animals true, and they have proven to be among man's best friends along with dogs, and come to think of it, a giraffe kind of resembles a horse but with a really long neck. Science is fun.

Ive eaten horse before and i dont remember thinking it was all that great. Ive seen horse on the menu at a restaurant recently. I often wondered if horse meat tasted really good, rivaling beef and veal, would people be as upset that one was killed 'in the line of duty".

Its never nice to see an animal killed. especially when that animal was serving the public good as part of our police force's mounted unit. Many said this story was especially tragic becasue the horse had no choice in this risky line of work, or his resulting fate.

this struck a chord with me, because most animals we eat had precious little to say about it until it was too late.

I always found it odd, especially here in north america the kind of reverence we hold for certain animals not because of their material value but because of their beauty. No celebreties get air time trying to free cows from farms, or stop the clubbing of racoons. No, its about seals and whales, and dolphins.

I remember a waiter in costa rica telling me they had dolphin on the menu and before anyone could make a sad face he said "but dont worry its not the nice dolphin, its the ugly ones with spots on their head". As if to assuage us. (It worked, and the dolphin was delicious)

But back to our Horse-friend Brigadier. A service was held in his honour, the mayor attended admidst all the pomp and circumstance of a diplomat killed in action. Strangers were said to have gathered outside by the hundreds tearfully wondering who could kill such a beautiful animal.

Its hard to fully understand people's sorrow when our society exerts so much effort to efficiently kill and cook the tasty animals while protecting the pretty ones.

Its not fun saying you dont understand why people seem so upset when an aminal is killed helping the police force. Reason and logic lack the emotional texure to make what Im saying truly relevant.

I came across this quote a while back from one of my favourite writers, Dr. Leo Buscaglia who specialized not in psychology or relationships but simply Love:

"I know for certain that we never lose the people we love, even to death. They continue to participate in every act, thought and decision we make. Their love leaves an indelible imprint in our memories. We find comfort in knowing that our lives have been enriched by having shared their love.
Though some day we all have to part with those we love, they are not lost. We are always better for having loved. In this way, love transcends even death."

by Leo Buscaglia, Ph.D.

those are moving words, and they dont directly relate to the death of a Horse so much as they remind me that we reside in emotional bodies that often defy the practical and linear logic of one mans meandering. i just thought itd be a nice quote to put in a story....

mabey the people who shed tears over the death of the police horse really did feel that sad, or perhaps it reminded them of their own horses or pet's death. i guess any time we stop and think about life and death in a way beyond the reasonable or rational is a healthy thing. it reminds us of our mortality.

I think deep down we feel a tiny degree of guilt for our treatment of animals and how readily we consume them. Mabey thats why we so publically mourned a horse named Brigadier tragically killed in the line of action. Mabey not.

But thats the beauty of life, you never really know for sure, so until then, mabey ill try and eat more fish and remind myself that not everyone sees a horse as a less flavourful version of a cow.

dr. cosa MD
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