Letter to the Editor

This is one awesome letter — please everyone, write letters to your editors!

The Pryor Wild Horse roundup was quite alarming and troublesome.  It was horrible to see old wild horses and their complete bands taken from their home, like Conquistador, Grumpy, Trigger, Shane and others vital to this historic and unique Spanish herd’s blood line.  It was heart wrenching to see Floyd, an exceptionally rare blue roan, who was beaten in the face, and who should be returned to the Pryor Mountains to live forever.  Then, there was Cloud, the stallion made famous by a PBS series, so courageously snaking his mares backwards into the corrals trying to rescue his family, so sadly torn from him.  But, who are these wild horses really?  A little fact not well known is that the Pryor Wild Mustangs truly belong to the Crow Tribe.  They are their “Crow Ponies”.  They always have been.  They always will be, and the Crows deserve to be heard with regard to these majestic famous wild horses that are a stunning part of their cultural heritage.  In truth, the BLM should listen to the Crows, for there is no one more deserving than they, who courageously fought to save their own lands, and who rode these spectacular Crow Ponies into many hunting quests and many battles.  Truly, it can be said that the ancestry of the Apsáalooke Nation lives on, deep in the hearts of their very own “Crow Ponies”. 

Carl & Laura
Billings, Montana



16 Responses to “Letter to the Editor”

  1. Janet Ferguson Says:

    P.S. I sent a gargantuan letter to the Edwin S. Grosvenor, Editor-in-Chief, American Heritage Magazine on the big story!

  2. Marilyn Wargo Says:

    Yes, letter sections are very popular, I read them to catch up with what I may have missed. Mar

  3. Suzanne Moore Says:

    I subscribe to several national horse magazines. They are going to hear from me, believe me.

  4. Elizabeth Turton Weston Says:

    Such a beautiful letter, hope it’s circulated amoungst all the appropriate sources as yet another plea.

  5. Nora Morbeck Says:

    Hi —

    I found this list for snail mail addresses to different news organizations.


    I’ve tried to contact on-line news groups by e-mail, and they just say “Thanks for writing.” Maybe sending a physical letter might get more attention.

    It seems like the news has been over-covering certain stories, like health care, the economic crisis, and Michael Jackson, the music video awards and Kanye being called a “jackass” by Obama. But hardly a peep about the wild horse round ups — which is an actual social issue.

    Why is that? Not to sound too paranoid, but it seems that agencies like the BLM really take advantage of media distraction and push an agenda while the media isn’t paying attention.

    Even PBS hasn’t run a story. Come on, the new Cloud program is slated to run later in the month of PBS — and the News Hour can’t look at its own network’s programming?!

    I guess I don’t get it …

    • Janet Ferguson Says:

      You are so right. It seems ridiculous, doesn’t it??? I have sent a gnarly letter to ASPCA, my state humane society, and it will go to every member of the subcommittee in the senate who will be marking up this bill. Our media is more into bytes than animal rights!!
      P.S. When you email the congress, they ask you to pick what topic you are writing on — I always look for anything except “animal rights.” Choose Interior/Forestry, or choose “Other”. This is far greater a problem than simply animal rights, I feel. (just a thought)

      • Roxy Says:

        Agree – I pick Energy or Natural Resources or Other.

        Just though tof this, I’m going to send several to the same person under every possibly related item to pick from.

    • Suzanne Moore Says:

      I find it incredible that not even PBS has had a report about this. Can they possibly run the Cloud program without a single comment about what has happened to these horses since it was filmed? Unbelievable!

  6. Morgan Williams Says:

    Are the Crow a Sovereign Nation? Does that help any Indian Nation in America with the fight to save Mustangs or any wildlife?

    I had been in contact with a Lakota man in North Dakota. There is a group rescuing and resurrecting the native Lakota horse.

  7. jo bunny Says:

    The Wild Horse was & still is an integral part of Native American Culture. Great Plains Indians admired & respected these beautiful creatures. There are many Native songs & poems dedicated to their beauty, their grace, & their bravery. They made beautiful wood carvings in the image of their fallen horse brethren, weaved beautiful blankets & garments depicting their heroic horses in battle, & created exquisite saddle blankets, head gear, & adornments for their cherished partners. Many Native American Nations bred horses, treating these animals with great respect & honor. The Crow, the Shoshone, the Comanche, the Nez Perce were just some of the tribes who became excellent breeders of these horses, & who developed one of the first truly American breeds of horse, the Appaloosa. Indeed, horses were & remain a significant piece of Native American History & Culture.
    Sadly, however, is how our American Government has tried to destroy the spirit of the Great Native Nations by destroying their horses. In 1874, over 1400 Comanche horses were rounded up by the US Calvary, shot, & left to die in the desert outside of Palo Duro Canyon. This senseless & cruel slaughter was meant to bend their spirit & send a message of the immense capability of brutality of the Calvary. As the US government continued its push to destroy the spirit of defiance of tribes, so did it continue its attempts at taking away their freedom, the horse. As more & more tribes were removed from the land, so were their horses. Native Americans were rounded up, relocated, & left horseless on reservations in remote areas.
    In 2003, Mary & Carrie Dann, Western Shoshone Indians, awoke to find heavily armed BLM agents rounding up their herd of over 800 horses, with claims that the sisters were illegally allowing their wild horses to graze on government lands. The government stated that the sisters & the Western Shoshone Tribe lost their rights to their land in the mid to late 1800s, in a treaty which gave rights to the United States in the Nevada Territory, a treaty which the Shoshone Nation refused to accept. Even today, Carrie Dann is a key figure in her nation’s political & legal battle to retain ancestral rights & to protect the values & heritage of the Western Shoshone Nation.
    There is a so much value in listening to the voices of the Native American tribes. We should take note of these stories, & do something NOW to stop our government before they totally eradicate wild horses from our lands, before they destroy what is left of our American heritage history, & culture. Even Congress, in the Wild Horse Act of 1971, declared “that the wild free-roaming horses & burros are living symbols of the historic & pioneer spirit of the West, that they contribute to the diversity of life forms within the Nation & enrich the lives of the American people.” All Americans, Native & non-Native alike, should join forces to stop the removal of these precious wild horses from our lands & work together for their protection….for our children, our children’s children, & for all future generations. Let’s work together to return the status & of the Wild Horse back to what it once was, one of honor, grace, beauty, courage, & respect. We owe it to these horses, to our peoples, & to our lands.

  8. Nora Morbeck Says:

    As an aside … the Animal Spirit Dance (a healing ceremony) is being revived. It incorporates many dancers embodying the spirit of wild animals — buffalo, bears, deer, cougars, wolves — and all of these animals are led into the dance by none other than … HORSES!

    Horses are the carriers of our spirits and dreams, traditionally speaking. How ironic that so many wild horses are now in captivity. What does this say about about the freedom of our spirits and dreams to move freely through the world?

    • Roxy Says:

      How about our personal freedoms also, not just spirits and dreams, but our actual constitution.

      What is happing to the horse, removal of freedoms – Sound anything like the Patriot Act? Keeping observers away? Where are the 33,000 captive horses? From what I’ve seen they are being kept in camps just like during the holocaust.

      The roundup is even holocust like, with the freezebranding.

      The secret killing minutes? What to do with the carcus?

      Us next?

      Less grueome, more positive action – If I understand correctly, everytime you open a PBS show or blog site on the internet it moves that item up the list. Lets keep Cloud at the top of every list on PBS!

      Also, write a blog everytime as you see necessary, or the pro BLM and anti wild horse commenters will take over – these blogs are where I really started to understand this whole issue.

      • Nora Morbeck Says:

        Roxy, you are so right.

        As far as the “no observers” thing goes … My letter to the BLM advisory board included comments about the denial of access to Elyse Gardner, the Humane Observer for the Pryor round up, as well as calling for government transparency, in general. There needs to be less government favoring of special interests, like cattle grazers, mining, and so on. More focus on protecting wild horses in their natural environment.

        I also brought up questions about why lamed horses weren’t being treated. Why is it that foot sore/lamed horses in the round up corrals weren’t given bute? It’s a fairly benign, standard treatment for imflamation. No responsible horse owner or vet would refuse to treat a horse with bute. So, what’s up with that? (I suspect it has something to do with chemicals in horse meat shipped to Europe, but I didn’t include that part in my e-mail, as it sounds a bit conspiracy theory… but in my heart, I don’t think I”m too far off the mark…)

        I like the idea of clicking as many times on the Cloud program as possible. I wouldn’t have thought of that. Thanks for sharing!

        What a great group of folks we’ve got here!

  9. Elvira Janz Says:

    BLM should leave the wild horses alone. All the wild horses and foals that were rounded up should be returned. The 10 year old wild horses and older also should be allowed to go back on the mountains. Who gives BLM the right to destroy historical and genetically enriched horses from the Pryor Mountains/near by areas? Why does BLM feel they have right to play God and judges over the lives of these beloved animals? They should release the 33,000 wild horses and leAve them alone.

    They’ve already taken their spirt, away. Greed, The real reasons are greed, uraniam and cattle. I love cows and they should have space to feed, but the wild horses shouldn’t be rounded up with helicopters and other devises. Shame on you BLM. RETURN ALL THE WILD HORSES BACK ON THEIR LAND. THESE ANIMALS ARE INNOCENT, VOICELESS AND DEFENSELESS.

    Cloud showed his power and strength. He tried to protect his family but BLM took most of them, away. He didn’t want to leave without HIS FAMILY/HERD THAT BLM HAD STOLEN. He fought to go back and get them. Cloud showed more compassion, love and loyalty than anyone that was involved in this inhumane and cruel round up.


    Elvira Janz/Animal Advocate/Author/Writer


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