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CARRIAGE HORSES
Letters & Editorials

CARRIAGE -HORSE BILL BALANCES HUMANE AND BUSINESS INTERESTS; PATHETIC ANIMALS

April 29, 1992

To the Editor:

You report April 15 that the New York City Council's Transportation
Committee voted 7 to 1 to expand the hours and areas in which carriage
horses may operate. Except for Kathryn Freed, the dissenter, the
committee shows ignorance on the subject.

The Manhattan carriage horse trade is in a 19th-century business in a
20th-century atmosphere of greedy and insensitive owners and drivers. No
amount of fancy harness can conceal the fatigue, soreness and look of
discomfort of these pathetic animals.

I see these carriage horse drivers every day. Most of them pass red
lights at busy intersections. Many drive with their backs to the road to
talk to the customers. Some of them even hand over the reins to a child
without watching the road, still talking to the customers. Angry
motorists competing for space deliberately pass perilously close to the
horse trying to get around or past it.

Last week on 11th Avenue, I saw a driver urge his horse west on the
sidewalk on an eastbound street. It was awful to see the horse struggling
to squeeze onto the narrow sidewalk.

I urge Mayor David N. Dinkins not to sign the bill if the Council
approves it May 14.

SUSAN SMPADIAN
New York

The writer is a taxi owner-driver.

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