today authorized the release of the following statement:
Dear Tennessee Walking Horse Industry:
First, let me thank the thousands of people who have supported and encouraged me over the past month. I believe that each of you and our great horse will soon be free from the bondage that has been endured for many decades. We have the greatest horse on earth and it will begin to thrive and flourish in the near future.
I have been made aware that a meeting and conspiracy to attempt to discredit me and physically cause harm to me took place yesterday, and after Thursday’s press conference things have become much more heated. Therefore, my wife and I have left Middle Tennessee to an undisclosed and protected location.
We are safe and in good hands. This will be my last public communication for an extended period of time. For right now, I must disappear. I am releasing this communication to Billy Go Boy, because Billy Go Boy can be trusted.
Attempts have already been made to hack into my email, and Facebook, and I have deactivated my Facebook account. Due to today’s technology and the ability to trace IP addresses, I will not be emailing or contacting anyone through internet means. You can trust that if a public statement comes through Billy Go Boy from me, then it is from me.
For the many people who sent private messages of encouragement, your messages are now safe and secure, and your names will not be revealed. Each of you still has the ability to step forward either publicly, or privately to the proper authorities with the information you have and I encourage you to do so.
Now is the time. Now is your time. The following list of individuals have proven to me they can be trusted and if you are willing to come forward I suggest you contact the following people:
The Humane Society of the United States – 855-667-6746 855-NO-SORING
Heidi Hall, The Tennessean – [email protected]
Roy Exum, The Chattanoogan – [email protected]
For the TWHBEA Members, International Board, and Executive Committee: Many of you are already aware of the existing plan for the sore horse takeover of TWHBEA in December. Please help stop this. Please check the history, make informed decisions, and most importantly VOTE! This is your right!
The leaders from decades ago will attempt to return, introduce alternative legislation to the PAST Act, and recreate a different version of the National Horse Show Commission. THEY MUST BE STOPPED and I believe if our people rise up together WE can keep this bondage from being perpetuated.
For the non-member TWH people. Join TWHBEA and rally behind the oldest and largest entity within this industry and you will have a vote! You have an opportunity right now to step up and help. You have said you want change, then put your money where your mouth is! This is the most critical time in Tennessee Walking Horse history.
For the breeders: begin breeding for sound, flat shod, and natural Tennessee Walking Horses now. Fall breeding is upon us, and it will take nearly three years for a vast number of horses that will be sought after to be produced, and ready to enter proper natural horsemanship training programs.
For the trainers who truly want to do the right thing: begin learning natural horsemanship training methods today. Contact people like Monty Roberts, Pat Parelli, and others or contact HSUS about their new program to help if you truly desire to remain a Tennessee Walking Horse trainer and want to do right, and sleep well at night.
For the veterinarians: Stop providing numbing agents to those who sore horses. Stop injecting horses legs to cover up the soring conspiracy. You have an ethical responsibility as members of AAEP, and AVMA to uphold, and you have an opportunity to do the right thing.
For the farriers: Please learn new methods of shoeing horses and help eliminate the horrid practice pressure shoeing that continues. You can shoe the horses properly, and become a part of the solution.
For the owners: Please do not continue to turn a blind eye. Winning at all costs will only bring you sorrow, pain, and despair in the long run. Do the right thing. Instruct your trainers to stop soring your horses, and if you find out or know they are then move the horses to proven sound horse trainers. The trainers sore horses because you help put them in this position. If you only care about winning and do not truly care about this breed, THEN LEAVE.
For the darkness, and those who continue to perpetuate it: YOU WILL FAIL, and I believe this with ABSOLUTE CERTAINTY. You have held our horse and people hostage for far too long, and your time is OVER. The dark cloud will be removed, and THE LIGHT WILL SHINE THROUGH! No matter how hard you try GOOD will overcome EVIL. That is a proven fact in this world, and the Tennessee Walking Horse shall soon be FREE!
God bless each of you. I pray that your hearts will be changed as mine has, and I hope that doing what is right will be placed upon your heart so heavily that your eyes are opened to the REAL TRUTH. For those who want to make the most difference, please step forward publicly and help lead our people. We need more brave leaders like the members of the TWHBEA Executive Committee and International Board that have publicly supported the PAST Act.
Long live the sound and natural Tennessee Walking Horse,
Irby comes from a life long “Big Lick” orientation. He served as President of TWHBEA from December 2010 through November 2012. During his time of service, Irby analyzed the issues facing the walking horse business and concluded that reform was needed in order for the Tennessee Walking Horse breed to survive. Irby supports HR 1518 PAST ACT which would amend the Horse Protection Act. It would eliminate the pads and chains that are presently used when exhibiting the “Big Lick” horse. Irby’s believes that the breed must distance itself from the soring stigma which has resulted in the Tennessee Walking Horse from being cast out from the other breeds, and its presently dire economic condition which have resulted from historically low numbers of horses being registered.
THE FUTURE OF THE TENNESSEE WALKING HORSE