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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s pledge to take the city’s iconic horse-drawn carriages off the streets is facing increased opposition, according to the Associated Press. Recent support for the horse carriages from many quarters has changed the mayor’s timetable on his ban promise from immediate to year-end.

Actor Liam Neeson, in a recent op-ed piece in the New York Times, wrote that the carriage horses appear happy and well cared for. “It has been my experience, always, that horses much like humans are at their happiest and healthiest when working,” Neeson wrote. His comments earned him the attentions of a gang of animal rights protesters outside his home.

Also, some city unions—usually on the Mayor’s side—broke with him on the subject, fearing tourism losses.

Two thirds of city residents are in favor of keeping  the horse carriages, at least in Central Park, according to recent poll.

And last week, the city’s print media—New York Times, Daily News, New Yorker—came out in sympathy for the horse-drawn carriages. “Let the horses and carriages alone,” said the Times in an editorial.

Click for more details in Jonathan Lemire’s AP article.

Posted April 25, 2014

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