Letter in local newspaper

18 December 2015: Ok Team! In response to the letter in the Hermanus Times [see below photo], Ed Coombe kindly wrote a response. I think its perfectly worded and covers all aspects. Thank you ED.
{sadly this letter was never published by the paper}

The Editor
Hermanus Times

The response of Robin Perrins, chairperson of the Fisherhaven Ratepayers Association, to Heather Cowell’s letter headed ‘We want the horses to remain, but their welfare and safety are paramount’ refers:
Mr Perrins has ignored the point Heather raised, namely that in a straw poll at the Fisherhaven Ratepayers AGM 24 out of 35 members indicated that they wanted the horses to stay. So, 68.6% of the ratepayers want the horses to stay yet the Chairman of the body that is supposed to represent their interest uses space in your paper to speak on behalf of the Executive Management Team (EMT) of the OSM, defending and justifying their decision that the horses should be relocated! We have to ask, ‘Since when was he mandated to speak on behalf of the EMT?’ And, ‘Can he be persuaded to listen to those he represents?’
The rest of his reply is mainly about miscellaneous accidents involving horses that have no direct relevance to the situation in Fisherhaven and the issue under discussion. Accidents happen everywhere. Nobody wants them to happen and for this reason those who want the horses to stay want to see appropriate measures, many of which Heather lists, that will prevent them – which is exactly what is done wherever cars are moving. Pedestrians are at far greater risk than horses in Fisherhaven and the possibility of liability suits must be infinitely greater, yet it would be absurd to ban them from the streets!
Making decisions on the basis of ‘what might happen’ is a dead-end street that makes life moribund. Rather, let us be thankful for the rich gifts of this beautiful place, one of which is a loose herd of free roaming horses, untamed yet peaceful, which have lived alongside people for several decades without any known incidents.
If we take steps to tame the people there is reason to believe that all will be well.
Ed Coombe.hermanus times letter

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