Horseracing: Where Beating an Animal is Perfectly Legal (Video Attached)

This is horseracing…

5-year-old Forgetthefantasy’s run in the 8th Sunday afternoon at Parx was described thus by Equibase: “FORGETTHEFANTASY…dropped back on the turn, began to bear out nearing the stretch, drifted wider racing into stretch, was put to, what appeared to be, rather excessive and severe right handed whipping nearing the three sixteenths pole, she continued to fall back and then despite dropping back to last, she was again whipped strongly, two times, on her right shoulder, when nearing the wire.”

“…was put to, what appeared to be, rather excessive and severe right handed whipping…then despite dropping back to last, she was again whipped strongly, two times, on her right shoulder, when nearing the wire.”

But, as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words…

The animal abuser, here, was jockey Edwin Rivera, and the fruit of his merciless flogging was $500 for the “connections” – Penny Pearce, Carson Phelps – from which Rivera received his standard jockey pay. Thing is, though, it mattered not a whit whether his horse finished 6th, 7th, 8th, or, as it was, last, for the cut was exactly the same for all four places; in fact, a 5th finish would have garnered but an extra $190.

We at HW believe it pointless to flood Parx or the Racing Commission with angry calls and letters. They simply do not care. Last year, 140 sentient beings were sacrificed at Pennsylvania racetracks. If dead horses don’t rate, an excessively whipped one surely will not. No, instead, we say share the above – and my PA-dead report – far and wide. Educate the masses. Make them understand that the abuse, cruelty, and killing ends when, and only when, the last betting window is forever shuttered.

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  1. Oregon has ruled nonhuman beings do suffer, they do grieve and feel hopelessness. The courts have failed us and law enforcement has used that as a source of justification for their failures. But Wwth the highlight of animal abusie being the sign of human abuse, law enforcement has been directed by FBI to emforce the laws and report back to provide a realistic profile. Violence between our species and others being the indicator of violence against those of our own species.

    The viciousness exhibited by meaninglessly beating a laboring nonhuman is ghastly. The same is true of mercilessly drugging nonhumans to mask injury, speed heart rate, or grow muscles – ghastly.

    What is evident – the vicious and merciless handling does not incur retaliation from the nonhumans. And I find myself on some days, silently encouraging the beaten to rise and kick the sh#t out of its abuser. We hear so much of bullying aNd yet it is accepted, celebrated when it happens to another species. Bullying is also justified when masked as “justified man slaughter” or “any number of brutal retaliations such as war. Our own socieities perpetuate violence when justified as “necessary evil.”.

  2. Well said Jan. I agree with just about everything you say. However, if a racehorse ducks from the whip, throws the rider who is beating that horse, I see it as a defense mechanism and therefore completely justified. Although I would never like to see anybody harmed, I think that a jockey beating a horse gets what they ask for in some circumstances.
    Our human gun laws for example justifies the use of arms in self defense. I see this as the same thing only an animal is involved.
    Anyways, the repeated beating of FORGETTHEFANTASY is blatant animal cruelty, and abuse. It’s absolutely sickening to watch. Nothing justifies this violence against a tired and possibly sore horse in the 21st century.
    There is a group in New York who is trying to ban horse carriages which is a good thing, but it garners so much attention (which it should) while racehorses are getting beaten just miles away. It’s so unjust that racehorses are getting beaten, and the industry finds this acceptable.
    While the New York horse racing industry, and all the thousands of people involved with it, find so much time and money to justify this brutal business, but haven’t spent any resources on implementing whipping rules attests to the lack of caring towards these profit slaves. They simply don’t care unless it’s a number bringing in more wagers, increasing their profits, making money for them.
    This video says it all. It’s a disgusting display of horse cruelty, and so are the horses who are dying every day for this cruelty circus. Again, the facts attest to the heartless people who support this industry. Anybody who is actively involved with this industry, in any capacity, is supporting horse cruelty, abuse, maiming, and death. No question.
    My only wish for today is that I had the money to hire an attorney in the state of New York and press charges of animal abuse and cruelty. These jockeys need their butts hauled into the court system (away from the industry protected commissions) and try it in the court system. There’s no doubt in my mind that any judge or jury watching this video would charge him with animal abuse and cruelty. No doubt. He would have a record which is what is needed for any possible future occurrences, and charges.
    Beyond that, this would set a legal precedent and shock waves through the horse racing industry knowing that jockeys will be brought to justice since the industry does little to prevent such abuse.
    The only organization that would do this is PETA. They got the bull hook banned, and I think they could get the whip banned.
    I contacted key personnel at PETA, sent them the evidence, and I’m just waiting to see if they decide to go forward. That’s the best I can do.
    Thanks to Patrick for posting this. It’s so necessary. It makes my hairs stand on end when I see this video.
    Again, key people in the horse racing industry go silent.

    • Totally agree with you, Gina. I read that article containing the video and it made me physically ill, it was a vicious merciless beating of this poor mare and reminded me of Espinoza on American Pharoah.

      Thank you for bringing this inhumane cruel whipping of FORGETTHEFANTASY to PETA’s attention.

      Patrick has my permission to give you my email address (i’m not into FB). There’s something i’d like to say about my research into whipping but cannot say it here.

  3. CORRECTION: I referred to New York State repeatedly in my post – WRONG. My apologies. I meant to say the state of Pennsylvania where this incident occurred.
    I realize this goes on every day all over tracks in the U.S., but to file a legal complaint would have to be in the jurisdiction where the incident took place which is PA.
    Whatever state it occurs doesn’t lessen the pain, suffering, and cruelty.
    Thank you.

  4. Thank you so much Patrick for exposing the vicious and merciless beating of this defenceless mare, FORGETTHEFANTASY.

    It appears that the two strong hits directed to her shoulder towards the end seems to have been what raised attention. Had it been just the strikes in behind the saddle, I doubt that they’d have been identified as an outrage.

    At the very least, EDWIN RIVERA should be hauled before the civil courts charged with INTENTIONALLY inflicting pain and suffering upon an animal, found guilty and punished severely. Such punishment being in line with what the general public would expect according to community standards. NOT the slaps on the wrist which the racing industry regards as appropriate which clearly displays that it condones this inhumane cruel practice.

    Beating horses with whips in racing is deliberate intent and most certainly not an accident or a mistake.

  5. Thank you Carolyn. I’m so strong on proceeding with civil action. I just have my voice unfortunately not the money needed to carry out such a task.
    I truly believe that Edwin Rivera would be charged with animal cruelty. There’s no doubt in my mind. Equally important is that a legal precedent would be established paving the way for future charges against any jockey that excessively whips a horse.
    Come on folks. We are living in the 21st century. This should not be happening.
    There are so many wealthy people involved in this industry that suddenly go silence when this issue arises both in the past, and the present. They call themselves the “good” folks of horse racing.
    This is not good. This is cruel, and abusive. This is against the law. This industry must stop getting away with illegal activities. These activities all being supported by either casinos, taxpayers, or the wagering public.
    This must stop. Please somebody step forward and help me get this filed.

  6. If horses (or animals) have no feelings, no soul, cannot feel pain or sorrow, then why do the jockeys use a whip to get the horses to respond and run faster? Could it be that horses do feel? DUH you morons!

  7. Anybody who has ever observed some horses in a grassy paddock will see that they have strong social bonds, communicate on a frequent basis, and are sentiment beings.
    Quite frankly Carolyn, I don’t think that the jockeys care about whether they have feelings or not especially when beating a racehorse. If they had any compassion whatsoever they wouldn’t do it.
    I will take that a step further actually.
    Anybody who is actively involved in this business will be required, at some point, to push any feelings they may have aside. In order to participate in this cruelty circus you make conscious choices regarding the well being of the racehorse you are connected with.
    Any compassionate or reasonable person would leave the business, and not support it.
    Being an active participant in horse racing is supporting everything not just some of it which includes breakdowns, maiming, dying, dropping down in claiming races when lame and/or sore, dumping at kill auctions when no longer competitive.
    It doesn’t matter how good your intentions are the fundamental business model is based on the exploitation of a living being for profit. Bottom line.
    People involved in the business tend to obscure the good with the bad when really it’s all bad in the end because it’s the racehorse that pays with their lives.

    • Jockeys are parasites as much as a worm in a horse is a parasite. They are creatures who survive by taking from the horse. They feed their adrenaline addiction and their greed and convince themselves that the horses “love it” and that the industry is a “sport” until they have told themselves that lie enough that they must believe it. They are sick people.

  8. It makes me angry when people mistreat horses (or any animal) whether its for profit or just plain meaness. There is a special place in hell for people like that!!!!

  9. Thank you for posting all of this ,as heartbreaking as it just won’t give up making people notice !
    these animals are disposable..what can we do to change the law????

  10. Thanks Nancy for posting it on Our World Blog, educate, spread the word.
    Rose, there are 3 critical things that can greatly reduce these incidents by cutting off funding to the industry:
    1. Support DECOUPLING.
    2. Cancel the Interstate Horse Racing Act
    3. Don’t wager on or watch horse races

  11. I woke up to the most amazing news this morning. Here’s the link:

    PETA has filed a formal complaint with the District Attorneys office in Pennyslvania against this Edwin Rivera! Yes.
    Thank you PETA!

    Thanks to all who are being a voice for the voiceless.
    Our animals are under siege right now on planet earth.
    We all must realize that in order for us to survive, we must ensure the survival and humane treatment of all living beings.

    Please everybody RT link, spread the word, send in letters to the DA’s office in PA to support this complaint.
    The more they hear our voices, the sooner they will act.
    Let’s hope they act.

    • I’m not the biggest PETA fan (I think their desire for the spotlight, and some of their tactics detract from the message) but I applaud them. They should equally go after horse abuser Penny Pearce. She put the jockey up there. She put a horse out to run just because every horse gets paid at Parx. She’s scum.

      • Totally agree with you Ray. However, my understanding is that under animal cruelty laws it is only the person who commits the physical act of the cruelty upon the animal who can be charged. Where i am, a jockey, when questioned, disclosed that the trainer had given him certain instructions re whipping. Jockey reprimanded, trainer questioned and got a slap on the wrist.

        Oh, it’s such a joke!

    • Welcome to the world of horse racing where unaccountability, non-transparency, the all boys club, doping of racehorses, beating, maiming and killing is business as usual.
      That’s what the “good people” of racing does. They uphold this system of abuse.
      All the while they are getting tons of tax breaks (meaning you and I support it). Check out the Senate meeting in New York. They are putting millions aside in tax relief for NY racetracks to ensure their purse money while a Native American casino is opening close by predicating an overall 40% reduction in racetrack income thereby affecting purses, and may even greatly reduce the number of races run.
      If this happens then it will mean racehorses lives will be saved, but if the Senate had not done this then the entire racetrack network in New York would have shut done. I’ll get my Kleenex out.

  12. -Any whipping makes me sick and angry, but when something like this happens I want 2 minutes alone with the monster so that he’d know what it felt like. There’s a special place in Hell just waiting for the owners, trainers, jockeys, and anyone who mistreats these gorgeous animals.

    • Gorgeous animals they most certainly are!
      What really disturbs me is that some of these horses go out to race when they’re sore, not well, have underlying health issues and just not up to the task. The last thing they need is to be beaten with a whip
      and it’s my belief that whipping contributes to horses breaking down, pushing them beyond their limits.

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