SHELBYVILLE, TN – All American Walking Horse Alliance Spokesperson Clant M. Seay questioned the accuracy of a portion of an article appearing in The Tennessean newspaper on August 21, 2014 regarding the Celebration’s “VAC” Veterinary Advisory Committee.
FORMER SENATOR JOSEPH TYDINGS (D-MD) AND CLANT M. SEAY, SPOKESPERSON, ALL AMERICAN WALKING HORSE ALLIANCE AT HISTORIC WALK ON WASHINGTON
ALL AMERICAN WALKING HORSE ALLIANCE SPOKESPERSON COMMENT:
Mr. Wilson, the All American Walking Horse Alliance, organizers of the historic “Walk On Washington” on June 18, 2014, respectfully take exception to that part of your story where you say, “Veterinarians with no ties to the walking horse industry will inspect horses after they compete in their respective categories.” Mr. Wilson, the head Vet Dr. Jerry H. Johnson has been associated with the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration since 1972 according to his CV. He states that he “Officiated” at the
JERRY H. JOHNSON, DVM – TOM BLANKENSHIP’S GO TO VET
Celebration for several years in the 1970s whatever “Officiated” means. He needs to explain what he did at that time. The “VAC” Spokesperson Mr. Tom Blankenship is a sore Big Lick aficionado of approximately 25 years. The “VAC” is costing the Celebration about $250,000.00 and it is not clear how much of that, if any, that Mr. Blankenshp is being paid. In 2006, Mr. Tom Blankenship was entrusted to lead a $600,000.00+ campaign to eliminate the “Scar Rule” and redefine “Soring” at the behest of the sore Big Lick interests. Mr. Blankenship enlisted Dr. Jerry H. Johnson in that effort. Mr. Blankenship has now resurfaced as the Spokesperson for a three person Celebration “VAC” Veterinary Advisory Committee. Sir, your readers have the right to know the truth – and it is definitely not true that “VAC” Head Vet Dr. Jerry H. Johnson nor “VAC” Spokesperson Tom Blankenship
have no ties to the Tennessee Walking Horse business. To the contrary, these two gentlemen appear to be highly paid to do the bidding of the “Big Lick Big Lie” stained Tennessee Walking Horse Celebration chaired by David L. Howard of Shelbyville. Mr. Wilson, I respectfully suggest you owe it to your readers to please get the other side of this story, and question Dr. Johnson on what he “officiated” over at the Celebration during the 1970s? And please ask Mr. Blankenship to please come clean on how all those moving parts fit together on the “VAC” PR gimmick to try and make the public believe that the Tennessee Walking Horse is being adequately protected which it is not. It is a fact that the Celebration’s owned S.H.O. W. HIO is presently being decertified by the USDA for violating the Horse Protection Act. “
Sincerely, Clant M. Seay, Spokesperson, All American Working Horse Alliance.
THE TENNESSEAN ARTICLE BY BRIAN WILSON
“Celebration begins with new evaluations for soring
As the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration opens its first night session on Thursday night, select horses taking part in the competition will be examined for signs of soring and abuse by a newly formed inspection committee.
The third-party Veterinary Advisory Committee began inspecting show horses when the Celebration opened on Wednesday in Shelbyville and will continue doing so until the event concludes on Aug. 30.
The committee’s veterinarians will evaluate horses based on the recommendations the committee gave Celebration officials before the competition started. The annual event has been plagued by accusations that the competing horses were victims of soring, or injuring their legs on purpose to make them step higher and longer.
Veterinarians with no ties to the walking horse industry will inspect horses after they compete in their respective categories, according to the recommendations approved by Celebration officials.
Those evaluations will now include blood testing and digital X-rays.
Show horses also will have to pass federal and local inspections already in place at previous events.
Those competing in a championship class are required to stay at Celebration grounds 48 hours before their event.”
It’s always good to get both sides of the story.