Thursday, February 01, 2007

in which kathleen parker cares more for a horse than for her fellow humans

Kathleen Parker is at it again. There are many wingnuts who can annoy, but for some reason Parker really crawls up my ass. While I feel for an animal that must be destroyed (I was raised rural and it brings it home), the idea that Barbaro was some sort of national symbol is just poppycock. He won one, that's one big race. He might have won more, but he broke down. A stallion with a gimpy back leg can't mount a mare. People who both loved him and stood to profit from him labored to save his life. They couldn't. That's sad, but final. Then KP has to try her hand at modern mythmaking.

"It was a catastrophic injury that would have resulted in most horses being euthanized on the spot. But Barbaro was special, not least in his ability to inspire humans." Well, in 1872, it would have resulted in most horses being euthanized on the spot, but equine medical treatment has made a few strides in the intervening decades. It's also worth pointing out that Barbaro's owners anticipated millions in stud fees, so they probably weren't going to walk out onto the track with a single-action revolver and put him down right then and there.

"How is it that in a time of terror and war, so many could become so emotionally invested in a horse? Maybe the better question is, how could they not?" Now, this is a woman who thought that Fallujah should be glassed over with a nuclear weapon after three mercernaries were killed and their bodies burned and hung on a bridge. Therefore, a better question might be, "How could someone so eager for death and suffering ever become emotionally invested in any creature?" I'm surprised she didn't Tivo the footage of Barbaro breaking down and watch it over and over, just for grins and giggles. What sort of twisted individual can view millions of people who never did a thing to her as targets and then not only get weepy over a horse, but somehow link the destruction of said horse to her own childhood disappointment? "I didn't get my pony either."


For her piece de resistance Parker tries to link Barbaro to Jane Fonda and John Kerry. She calls Barbaro "an utterly neutral reservoir of hope, beauty and determination." Yeah, and you know why we could project ourselves onto him like that, Kathleen? Because he was a frackin' horse! I swear, if Freud was still alive, this column would make him spooge in his drawers.

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