The Myth of the “Non-Racing” Death

The most recent Golden Gate Stewards Minutes report the euthanasia of a horse, Montana Sunset, on March 23 for “Equine Herpes Virus Neurotrophic Strain” – whatever that is. Of course, nothing new about another dead racehorse, but I thought this a good opportunity to (again) point out the deception of the “non-racing” death.

Growing up, I was taught that roughly 620,000 soldiers died during the American Civil War. That’s a fairly well-known number because it has often been said that it matches (or almost matches) the fatality-count from all other U.S. wars combined. But what most don’t realize is that roughly two-thirds of those soldiers died of disease. With that knowledge, when have you ever heard someone try to make the case that those deaths were in any way less significant, or more to the point, could somehow be disassociated from the war itself? Doesn’t happen – nor, obviously, should it.

As the above clearly shows, time, place, circumstances, and context matter. So, too, with the Montana Sunsets of the racing world. In other words, they’re not allowed to absolve themselves here, to write this off as an unfortunate event that could have happened anywhere. Every death in the horseracing industry is by the horseracing industry – every one of them, whether it comes via snapped leg, ruptured ligament, cardiac collapse, pulmonary hemorrhage, or “Equine Herpes Virus.” And that’s that.

4 Comments

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  1. Blatant animal abuse! ! ! The sport of Kings is a falacy!! Stop this cruelty, they should not die for a $2 bet… Such an atrocity!!

  2. I may be wrong but I think that Equine Herpes Virus is contagious, the place should be shut down so it doesn’t spread. The horses should be in quarantine because it can be fatal.

  3. The Therobreds people are just trying to cover their butts. That is why the are not doing autopsies on any of the horses. They are jjust giving excuses because they do not want to know the truth.on what is killing these million dollar horses

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