Author Topic: Protests of calf roping ignore its roots in ranching, veteran contestant says  (Read 206 times)

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Online Elderberry

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Houston Chronicle by Shelby Webb March 8, 2019

With a quick nod, Adam Gray’s world blurs into motion.

A 250-pound calf shoots out of a metal gate with Gray and his horse, Tux, close on its heels. When Tux thrusts forward with his back legs, Gray swings a stiff rope loop out of his right hand, hoping to catch calf No. 95 by the neck. On this Thursday night, he misses. His loop narrows and falls onto the dirt as thousands in NRG Stadium groan in sympathy.

If Gray had his way, the rope would catch and force the calf to spin around. Gray would jump off Tux, throw the calf to the ground and hitch three of its legs together in a knot strong enough to last three seconds.

Welcome to tie-down roping, a decades-old rodeo sport that, in recent years, has become a target for picket lines and petitions by animal rights groups. A handful of protesters in Houston have lined the entrance of the Livestock Show & Rodeo for the past several years, taking aim at the sport with signs reading “real men don’t hurt babies,” and “calves hate rodeo.”

Klay Rutherford, a spokesperson for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA, said the sport is nothing more than glorified animal abuse. Calves can break legs, tear ligaments, hemorrhage or even die in these events, he said.

“It’s not a sport if there are unwilling participants,” Rutherford said. “Rodeos celebrate a pathetic side of this wild west when bored men had nothing better to do than abuse their livestock in the evenings.”

That impression is far from the truth, according to Gray and Catherine Schultz, Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo’s managing director of sports and event presentations. Calf roping has long been necessary on ranches where the nearest pen to quarantine an animal may be several thousand acres away.

“It really started as proper care for livestock out on big ranches,” Schutlz said. “It’s tying the calf, making sure it’s in proper health, that there’s nothing that we need to doctor and then letting it go back into its herd.”

More: https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Protests-of-calf-roping-ignore-its-roots-in-13682142.php
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Offline thackney

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We are part of rodeo, with our daughter competing.  Also we have helped put on other youth and adult rodeos.

I know several people who keep calves because their kids compete.  They really limit the amount of full tie-down roping practice.  It is hard on the calves.  Break-away roping is more common in the youth, even team roping is not as hard on the calves.
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Offline Sanguine

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I have wondered when "they" would come for rodeos.  Way too tough and manly for these times.
Cui bono?

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Online roamer_1

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That impression is far from the truth, according to Gray and Catherine Schultz, Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo’s managing director of sports and event presentations. Calf roping has long been necessary on ranches where the nearest pen to quarantine an animal may be several thousand acres away.


He's sure right about that. *FAR* from the truth.

Offline Smokin Joe

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We are part of rodeo, with our daughter competing.  Also we have helped put on other youth and adult rodeos.

I know several people who keep calves because their kids compete.  They really limit the amount of full tie-down roping practice.  It is hard on the calves.  Break-away roping is more common in the youth, even team roping is not as hard on the calves.
Keeping in mind the roots of the practice, it is no where as hard as being branded, castrated, and having the horns burnt off, the processes it was meant to facilitate on the open range.
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Offline thackney

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Keeping in mind the roots of the practice, it is no where as hard as being branded, castrated, and having the horns burnt off, the processes it was meant to facilitate on the open range.

Very true, but unlike life for a roping calf, they only have to do that once.
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Offline Smokin Joe

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Very true, but unlike life for a roping calf, they only have to do that once.
Man, considering what else happens, once is enough for the little critters...
How God must weep at humans' folly! Stand fast! God knows what he is doing!
Seventeen Techniques for Truth Suppression
And I looked, and rose up, and said unto the nobles, and to the rulers, and to the rest of the people, Be not ye afraid of them: remember the Lord, which is great and terrible, and fight for your brethren, your sons, and your daughters, your wives, and your houses. Nehemiah 4:14 (KJV)

About the only "Big" Liberals don't revile is "Big Government"

Online roamer_1

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Very true, but unlike life for a roping calf, they only have to do that once.

Well sorta. Not the roping part. About any time you've got to work on em, it's gonna be a matter of of roping em and getting em down. You don't have the convenience of a squeeze chute out on the range.

And that might be quite a bit over an injury that requires multiple applications, even if you do get em to a set up stock pen.

Offline thackney

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Well sorta. Not the roping part. About any time you've got to work on em, it's gonna be a matter of of roping em and getting em down. You don't have the convenience of a squeeze chute out on the range.

And that might be quite a bit over an injury that requires multiple applications, even if you do get em to a set up stock pen.

Fair enough, cheers
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