THETA, TN – Santa Claus came to Theta last night and sitting under the Christmas tree this morning was a package with a large red bow on it. Nephew Eugene came up to eat some collard greens and cornbread. After dinner, we opened the package and there was a Note inside along with an impressive bunch of papers.
The Note read:
From: Santa Claus
To: All The Horses, and Pat Stout – c/o Billy Go Boy
“Rudolph, Donner, Vixen, Blitzen all the elves and I stand with Pat Stout and all the people who voted For Passage of HR 1518/S1406, Prevent All Soring Tactics Act” to help The Horses. S. Claus
A Letter From Pat Stout’s Attorney
Dear TWHBEA Members,
Pat Stout gave you an opportunity to be heard and express your opinion on HR 1518, Prevent All Soring Tactics Act. The inspiration for the Poll question was provided by former TWHBEA President Tracy Boyd’s May 27, 2013 public statement describing the problem – “It is the soring”. Boyd referenced it as a “black cloud” and a “stigma” hanging over the breed. Boyd said, “I, along with six other members of the Executive Committee, voted to support H.R. 1518, better known as the Whitfield Amendment.”
Here is the “YES” or “NO” question which Boyd’s courageous stand inspired:
Shortly after the Celebration, Pat Stout and I contacted Executive Director Tracy Boyd about obtaining the TWHBEA member list for Pat to use in polling the membership to learn the opinion of the members, “YES” or “NO” regarding passage of the HR 1518 legislation. On September 10, 2013, Rick Clardy, upon being authorized to do so by Executive Director Boyd, provided the membership list to Pat Stout. Arrangements were then made to retain the services of Greg Cook, CPA to count the votes, and for Modern Postcard of Carlsbad, California to handle the production and mailing of the postcard ballots. None of any of this has cost TWHBEA a dime. On September 20, 2013, Pat Stout from her Cookeville, Tennessee home mailed about 6,950 postcards to eligible to vote TWHBEA members and asked you to please vote “YES” or “NO” on the HR 1518/S1406, Prevent All Soring Tactics Act, to remove the chains from the Tennessee Walking Show Horses, eliminate the corrupt HIO system and making horse soring a federal felony.
The following Monday, Sep. 23, 2013, the postcards started arriving earlier than expected. An uproar over the Poll developed when TWHBEA President Loyd Black refused to allow Pat Stout to explain the Poll to the membership. All TWHBEA had to do was post a disclaimer on its website/Facebok, allow Pat to explain the Poll on the website/Facebook, and the matter could have proceeded without little or no controversy.
Executive Director Tracy Boyd knows that I called for Mr. Black the day the postcards arrived early, and left messages for him to call me, but I never heard from him. Lloyd Black displayed a total lack of leadership, and then abruptly resigned before the Poll votes were counted. The votes were counted on October 16, 2013, and you voted in a landslide 63% For Passage of HR 1518/S1406 with an impressive 26% of the eligible members participating.
In my opinion, Pat Stout is a heroine and a “profile in courage”. I suggest that each of please thank Pat for what she did for the future of the Tennessee Walking Horse and its breed registry. I also think Tracy Boyd should be commended for his helpfulness in assisting in bringing the HR 1518 Poll to fruition. For too long at TWHBEA, the soring has been ignored and things have been swept under the rug. TWHBEA’s current depressed financial circumstances reflect that. As Executive Director Tracy Boyd correctly said it is simply the soring and the public’s correct perception of it that is costing the breed its future possibilities.
I want all TWHBEA members to know that on behalf of Pat Stout that I was available to the leadership at any time to answer questions regarding the Poll. None of the leaders contacted me to take advantage of that offer. Pat Stout and I appeared before the Executive Committee meeting and an assembled “lynch mob” on September 26, 2013. To the extent possible that you can deal with a “lynch mob”, Pat and I answered questions regarding the Poll. Following the Executive Committee Meeting, I discovered an apparent conspiracy plot against Pat Stout which attempted to railroad her for allowing you to have a vote on the HR 1518 legislation. The plot led back to Celebration Chair David L. Howard’s Big Lick cabal through its operative Performance Committee member Tom Kakassy and other obviously conflicted and biased TWHBEA Committee members. I protested and objected to these actions, and I made the public aware of them and identified the alleged participants and conspirators.
Pat Stout and I then reappeared before the Executive Committee on October 27, 2013 after Mr. Cook had provided an October 22, 2013 letter advising the Pat Stout Poll had done nothing whatsoever to imperil the corporation’s non-profit tax exempt status as a Sec. 501(c)(5) corporation. Mr. Cook went further and said in describing Stout’s Polling Initiative (it) ‘seemed reasonable and ordinary (perhaps even necessary after the May meeting). As a Member-Elected Director and Board-Elected Vice President in charge of a Standing Committee with a seat on the Executive Committee, not only did she appear to be invested with the authority to communicate information from the membership to the Executive Committee and Full Board, it was my impression that is her first duty’. Mr. Cook’s letter and my email letters to the Executive Committee setting out the alleged conspirators against Pat Stout and my objections and objections for the Executive Committee to referring the matter to the Enforcement Committee with no Complaint being filed and fee paid were all made part of the record of the October Executive Committee Meeting.
I suggested at that October meeting that all matters regarding Pat Stout be dropped because she had done absolutely nothing wrong. The Executive Committee met again in November and for some strange reason it refused to approve the minutes of the October meeting.
On December 5, the Executive Committee, on whose watch the HR 1518 Poll took place, heard a report from the Enforcement Committee, and then its members finally unanimously agreed to dismiss all matters against Pat Stout noting that the Executive Committee did not know about the Poll in advance and didn’t officially approve it.
I watched the video that Mr. Bob Roach made of the TWHBEA Annual Members Meeting on December 6. The discussion regarding the HR 1518 Poll dominated the session. I observed the heated comments of the members, and I was especially moved by one lady at the meeting who said she “didn’t think things should be shrouded in secrecy”. I totally agree with that lady. Tracy Boyd knows, and I want all of you to know that on September 23, 2013, when the first postcard arrived, I called President Black and Mr. Black didn’t return my call. Loyd Black is the sole reason for the confusion and secrecy regarding the HR 1518 Poll.
In my opinion, Mr. Black was the willing or unwitting tool of Celebration Chairman David L. Howard and his sore Big Lick crowd in Shelbyville. Upon being questioned by Joyce Moyer, Mr. Black admitted he did not write the letter posted under his name sent to the TWHBEA membership on September 25, 2013 attempting to dissuade members from voting in the Poll. Although Loyd Black didn’t show Big Lick, he made some bizarre statement that he would, but his health wouldn’t allow him, too. In my opinion, Loyd Black was anything but a friend to the Sound Horse. Following my attempts to reach Mr. Black, I repeatedly offered to meet with unbiased representatives of TWHBEA to answer questions about the Poll. To this day, none of those offers have been accepted. I am still willing to do that if there is an interest in doing so.
I observed at the Annual Directors meeting on December 7, 2013, a gentleman, a new Director from Texas, make a Motion that the matter regarding Pat Stout be referred back to the Enforcement Committee. His Motion was improper in that discipline matters cannot go to Enforcement Committee until a written Complaint has been filed, a filing fee paid, and the Executive Committee reviews same, then refers it to the Enforcement Committee. It was also improper because the Executive Committee had already ruled on the Pat Stout matter and as such, it cannot be revisited. It was further improper because the new President apparently did not have knowledge of the rules of the corporation or was not advised of them or did not want to know that they existed when he improperly entertained the Texas director’s Motion. The improper Motion was then approved by the Board of Directors. I realized that the new Texas Director who made the Motion most likely wanted further information on the Poll results. I also agreed with the lady who said things “shouldn’t be shrouded in secrecy”.
Both were my reasons for requesting Mr. Greg Cook, CPA, Cook and Co. of Arab, Alabama, to please tabulate the votes in the HR 1518/S1406 Opinion Poll, State by State, Canada and Overseas, and provide a breakdown on State and Region to me. The Director from Texas might be interested to learn that the Lone Star State of Texas which elected him also voted 78% FOR PASSAGE of HR 1518, with 22% of the eligible Texas members participating.
I also specifically asked Mr. Cook to re-examine each Postcard ballot he counted for authenticity and to please verify that the name on each Postcard ballot matched the member name on the TWHBEA member list that Executive Director Tracy Boyd provided Pat Stout on September 10, 2013. This was the list that Modern Postcard of Carlsbad, California used to have a USPS approved mailing list prepared from which the Postcards were produced and mailed to approximately 6,950 voting eligible TWHBEA members in the United States and throughout the world.
Mr. Cook has complied with my request on behalf of Pat Stout, and I am pleased to release the Poll Results and Greg Cook’s “Details Request On Opinion Poll Breakdown by State and Region” to the world for all to see so any “shroud of secrecy” is dispelled as to how the Postcard ballots were generated, mailed, received, verified and counted, and to settle any issues if ballots from non members were counted. According to Mr. Cook, there were none received to count.
I believe these State and Region tabulations are highly informative, and they show a clear mandate from the TWHBEA members throughout the United States and the world that they strongly favor removing the pads and chains from the Tennessee Walking Show Horse to stop the soring abuse and remove the stigma which limits the breed from any future growth. The results of this Poll will be made available to all Congressmen and U.S. Senators along with media outlets
Clant M. Seay,
Attorney for Pat Stout
I have an idea that my friend Billy Go Boy may have some commentary on Mr.Cook’s detailed breakdown by State, Region and International.”
Radar and I wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holiday Season!