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DEADLY (HUMAN) RACE: Animal rights protesters chain themselves together on San Francisco racetrack

In 2020, more than 20 horses died on the Golden Gate Fields, causing Berkeley city council and mayor to request a special investigation.

RICK HURD: Four people chained themselves together and lay down on the racetrack at Golden Gate Fields on Thursday, demanding that the track be shut down over recent horse deaths and forcing the day’s races to be canceled… Seventeen people from a Berkeley-based group called “Direct Action Everywhere (DxE)” held blue-and-gold placards as they gathered near the entrance to the racetrack at Interstate 80 and Gilman Street. Four others found their way onto the track and lay down in what a press release from the activists described as “heavily-weighted PVC pipes”.

The protest started around noon. The banner and placards outside the track read, “Shut Down Golden Gate Fields,” and the protesters chanted, “It’s not entertainment,” and “There’s no excuse for animal abuse.” The four who went onto the track were identified by 33-year-old Almira Tanner, the group’s lead organizer, as Jamie Cron, Omar Aicardi, Rocky Chau and Rachel Ziegler. As of 3:30 p.m., the four chained protesters were still on the track along with police, who arrived shortly after the protest began… Tanner said the four people on the track were prepared to be arrested, but as of 4 p.m., authorities had not announced any arrests with the protesters still on the track…

In 2020, more than 20 horses died on the track, causing Berkeley city council and Mayor Jesse Arreguín to request a special investigation on behalf of Berkeley residents. The California Horse Racing Board’s website listed four of the deaths as training related, with the fifth labeled as “other”. That meant the horse’s death did not occur during racing or training… “These beautiful animals live lives of exploitation and abuse for the sake of profit,” Chau said in a statement released by the group. “Then they’re killed for the same reason. The public is increasingly aware of the reality of this barbaric industry and is demanding that we leave it in the past.” The protest caused Golden Gate Fields to cancel all the day’s races…

A Berkeley police cruiser and a paramedic truck from the Berkeley Fire Department were stationed a block away from the protests, and Golden Gate Fields placed three security officers at the entrance where the 17 protesters stood and chanted… During the protests, a track worker pulled over his car and threw two eggs at the larger group of protesters gathered outside the facility. He then charged the group, yelling about workers’ livelihoods. Track security grabbed him and escorted him back to his car. Other people screamed obscenities at the protesters. SOURCE…


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