At the March 6 meeting of Wilmington’s City Council, both Autumn Butler and Craig Kittner publicly added their voices to the opposition of the horse carriage trade.
Autumn referenced the clip-clopping of horses’ hooves on city streets, a sound that was for her, and many others, a charming reminder of days gone by. But looking more deeply into the reality of what walking on pavement does to the horses, Autumn changed her mind about what the clip-clop of horse-drawn carriages represent.
It is a sound from the past, which has been revealed for what it is—a cruel practice.
As Autumn explained, when it comes to historic charm, Wilmington is in no short supply. Let’s hope that the city leaders respond to this compelling argument and come to recognize that there is no reason to continue this archaic mode of transportation. See a video of Autumn’s full remarks here.
Craig shared a story about being knocked down by a horse as a child, underscoring the fact that his thinking about horses then came from TV shows and movies, which portrayed them as loyal servants for people instead of what they really are: large animals with their own minds and a strong startle reflex.
He also reiterated how fortunate Wilmington has been so far, in terms of avoiding serious injuries to humans and horses. Other cities, he noted, have not been so lucky, and have had incidents where people have been hurt and carriages horses have been put down due to the extent of injuries suffered.
These animals are not designed to be on a hard surface all day.
Craig’s comments can be heard in their entirety here.
Thank you to both Autumn and Craig for speaking out! Wilmington today is at a crossroads. We can either entrench ourselves more deeply into the past by increasing the number of horse-drawn carriages on our streets, as has been proposed. Or we can look wisely and humanely to the future and phase out these relics. Let us encourage our leaders to choose the latter.
Please help by joining our Resist Horse-Drawn Carriages in Wilmington group on Facebook.