I’ve had lots of emails and comments about
Karen Sussman, president of International Society for Protection of Mustangs and Burros. since her tragic loss of so many horses in the Western South Dakota blizzard last month.
I’d like to remind all of you that Karen was not responsible for the blizzard and that this is a time to be compassionate toward her. She is in GRIEVING. Consider the 5 stages to loss before you fill Social Media with seething criticism about her. 1) Denial and Isolation. 2) Anger 3) Bargaining 4) Depression and last 5) Acceptance. All of us hear about the loss of horses and other innocent animals about every minute of the day. We feel the pain of loss when we hear our FB friends suffer the heart break of losing a beloved companion. We are able to be compassionate because we’ve been through it and we know how much it hurts. Most of us have never been or will ever have to feel the magnitude of loss Karen has just gone through. Please consider how devastating this loss is to Karen before you set about demonizing her. As an advocate for the welfare of animals I am opposed to breeding until sensible, sustainable and humane solutions for unwanted and homeless animals both domestic and wild has been resolved. This process of raising consciousness for the masses when it comes to anything getting close to their pocket books will be on going. I’ve been advised that many of you have the expertise to manage Karen’s herds better than she does. I certainly couldn’t but….. I wouldn’t take it on. Just managing this (what some refer to as a) controversial film has been enough for me! I’m not perfect, Karen isn’t and neither are any of you. We all have different reasons we love and different ways of showing it. Some of us do it by indulging, others through food, some believe in tough love , some are touchy, feeley and so on. Karen has her reasons and her way of being in love with her horses and she does understand the magnitude of responsibility she has. Sometimes we all get into situations that are really hard to get out of without doing more harm than good. I think Karen is in one of those complex situations and frankly so am I in a different arena of life. Poor planning – or anything else you may believe to be true about her please give her some time to go through the GRIEVING process. Be prepared to offer her help and advice when she’s ready but don’t force the issue. Right now – consider what stage of losing loved ones” she’s in. Who thinks it’s a good idea to reserve your stone throwing for those of malicious intent?