Speak for the Ponies Essay

Speak for the Ponies Essay

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Hoof beats pounding across the sand. This is the sound of ponies living freely on Assateague Island, which lies in both Virginia and Maryland. Maryland leaves their Assateague ponies in peace and under protection, but Virginia manages their Chincoteague ponies a little differently. However free and wild the ponies may seem, they are the property of the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Department (VFD). The selling of the ponies began in 1925, and the VFD fully acquired the Chincoteague herd in 1947 (Holden). These special ponies are internationally famous due to the release of Marguerite Henry's "Misty of Chincoteague" (Robson). Now, over 3,000 Chincoteague ponies reside in various regions across the United States and other countries and the auction draws over 40,000 people to Chincoteague each year (Frederick) and (Holden). One of the most tragic aspects of the auction is that the most sellable ponies are less than a year old and ripped away from their mothers at the clang of the auctioneer's gavel. The older a pony is the harder is it to sell him. These untamed ponies, sold into domestication and transported away from the only home they now must live forevermore surrounded by strange creatures called humans. The treatment and auctioning of the wild Chincoteague ponies is unethical and inhumane because the ponies are not accustomed to human contact and forced to perform actions against their will.
Four hundred years ago, a Spanish galleon wrecked offshore the barrier islands and seventeen ponies found refuge at Assateague Island. As the surrounding area slowly colonized, these ‘native' ponies on Assateague Island and the ones brought over by colonists intermingled, creating the stout breed that lives on today. Before 1924, th...


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2. "Saltwater cowboys." Christian Science Monitor Aug. 1997: 4. Academic Search Complete. Web. 13 Dec. 2013. .
Source H: “Visit the National Park and see the Wild Ponies”
1. "Visit the National Park and See the Wild Ponies." Assateague Island. Assateague Island National Seashore, 2000. Web. 13 Dec. 2013. .
2. "Assateague Island." Assateague Island National Seashore. Assateague Island, 2000. Web. 13 Dec. 2013. .

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