Editor’s Note: This Letter to the Editor is in response to Santa Monica resident Marcy Winograd’s efforts to end pony ride operation at the Main Street Farmers Markets on Sundays.
To those of us who believe that forcing animals into servitude is ethically indefensible, Marcy Winograd is a hero. As are those city councilors who recognized that there are many family-friendly activities that don’t involve animal exploitation. Being tethered to turnstiles or spending days in pens is no quality of life for animals.
It is inconceivable for us to imagine being confined in one cramped place for our entire lives. The very essence of freedom is being able to come and go as we please, deciding when and what to eat, hanging out with people we like and avoiding those we don’t, choosing and courting our mates and deciding whether or not to have children. In fact, the denial of these liberties is used as punishment for the criminals in our society. Yet animals used for entertainment, who have committed no crimes, are denied all of these fundamental choices.
Animals want and deserve to live their lives as nature designed and pursue their own pleasures and pastimes.
It’s heartening to learn that Ms. Winograd is defending her right to free speech by taking her case to the Court of Appeals. Attempting to stifle her voice is a chilling slippery slope indeed.
Senior Writer/PETA Foundation