When discussing wrongdoing in the dressage world, there always seems to be this one argument: “But what about endurance horses? They suffer much more!”
Yes, the number of dead horses in endurance make me shudder, too. Also the dead racehorses. Or that about 40% of horses bred in Poland go into meat production (and many of them end up in long transports to Italy). I guess we could make this a long list.
There is greater suffering in the world than the suffering of the grand prix dressage horses. Absolutely. But that doesn’t mean we can’t talk about other problems or point out other injustice. That a bigger suffering exists doesn’t diminish the lesser suffering.
Then we could not talk about any of our “first world problems” anymore, quite frankly, because in this world, millions of beings suffer unimaginably. That there is a greater suffering should not keep us from speaking up against other grievances. Everyone of us does what we can, in the areas that we are passionate about. Some people expose the living conditions of animals in meat production, some travel to the Jemen to drill wells. I’m passionate about dressage and my interest is that dressage horses don’t have to suffer because of human ambition. It might not be the most worthy cause on the planet. But it’s where I want to make a difference.
So please, if someone is making an effort to discuss a problem, don’t kill the discussion with the “But what about…?” argument and acknowledge that want to make the world a better place in their own way. You can choose yours.