Letters & Opinion, Sounding Off

Danger – Runaway Meat

Image of Rochelle Gonzales
Rochelle Gonzales

SO we have yet another collision involving animals that have left people injured, and I’m guessing that once again, no one will be held accountable.

Thanks to a stray horse, seven people are left injured, and who is to blame? We might never know!

Man, I tell you, Lucians are really complacent and easy to abuse, you know.

How many more lives are supposed to be scarred – or lost — in such a senseless manner before action is taken?

This issue involving cows and horses that are free to roam the streets causing havoc is particularly enraging to me because unlike violence and freak accidents, this one problem is COMPLETELY avoidable if: 1. Owners of said animals maintain their animals correctly and 2. Law enforcers do what they are paid to do — enforce the law.

I still cannot forget the time when I witnessed (in what was seemingly slow motion but in actuality, a split second) a black calf write-off a Subaru Forester. A calf!

It was night and the driver was not even speeding but the creature just bolted onto the dark road near Caribbean Cinemas, giving the driver (who was transporting her elderly mother, daughter and niece) no time to even think of braking.

Of course, this incident was only one case out of hundreds, but they all have the same conclusion: the vehicle owners all had to fend for themselves because, of course, no one ever comes forward to claim their animal, so who are they going to claim damages from, the cow?

Now here is where I begin to scratch my head. The rogue cows and horses which have caused many a collision and have even caused loss of life have no owners at all. Yet, if a cheeky individual was to go to any of these trouble spots, namely the Choc roundabout and the highway in Cul-De-Sac, and attempt to load a calf or two onto his pickup truck, his arms would be hacked off by a protective owner before said driver could even pull up his handbrakes.

Now, knowing this — and yes, this is common knowledge that the farmers who own said horses and cows are fiercely protective of their livestock – why, oh why, hasn’t the law used this knowledge to their advantage in a bid to curb these deadly collisions?

By law, livestock that are left to graze in open spaces must be branded and also tied to prevent them from venturing onto the streets, so rightly, anyone found breaking said laws should face the consequences, right?

So how do law enforcers go about doing their job when no one wants to claim responsibility? Hit them where it hurts the most — their pockets.

If I may lend a suggestion, why can’t authorities make a clean sweep of the hotspots mentioned above by removing the animals that are not branded and tied, hold on to them for a certain amount of time — say a week or two — and if no one comes forth to claim them, cull them.

And in the case where they are claimed, slap a fine on the careless owner so they he/she will think thrice before leaving animals loose to endanger human lives.

This has gone way past ridiculous now and, like I said earlier, it literally is as easy as fencing or tying your animals properly, as well as for law enforcement to do their job diligently. In this case, that’s all it takes to avoid these deadly collisions and save lives.

Now I know there are some who will say that the police have better things to do with their time and resources. But I can guarantee you who think that way that you will only believe that until it is the vehicle you or your loved ones are travelling in hurtling head-on into the gut of a one-tonne bull.

Oh, I almost forgot to mention the little fact that these animals also chase pedestrians…yes, the cows, especially near the cinema are known to chase cinema goers who are heading to the venue by foot.

Basically, these usually gentle giants, while they serve their own purpose to the farmers, have been proven to be a nuisance to pretty much everyone else who comes into contact with them. Well, at least while they are alive and it is high time that this problem is seen to.

Otherwise, although I’m not inciting theft and violence, I wouldn’t be surprised if fed-up people start taking those animals for consumption. After all, “they have no owners”, right?

In the event that this starts to go down, I don’t eat red meat, but I know a few who do, so don’t be stingy.

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