According to Keeundra Hatley Smith in an Instagram post, a stallion named Black Lives Matter died unexpectedly during a procedure to prepare him for races. The Hatleys, from Oak Cliff, Texas, said were unsuccessful in their attempts to get help but were suspicious of the staff in charge of looking after BLM. However, there’s no evidence the hospital did anything.
“We took our horse BLM an hour away to a VET for a small, common procedure to be done that would collect sperm for future reproduction and to also have him castrated so that he can perform without raging hormones and have better success during races,” read the caption of the video.
They said they dropped BLM off healthy but when they came back to pick him up he was unresponsive. They also noticed a camera in the stall where BLM was kept. One staff member in the video said the camera is supposed to have 30-day footage. Yet, when the Hatley’s asked for the footage, the staff member at the front desk told them, “We are not here for your social media needs,” and hung up the phone.
Read about the Hatley’s from CBS News:
“The horse and the name has really set a tone for what’s going on in the world and people have to hear it,” Gregory Hatley said. “No matter, everywhere you go, now social media.”
“We have this love for the horse world and we’ve been involved in it, you know, ever since we was kids,” Charles Edward Hatley said.
“It started in 1961 when we was children right here in Dallas, Texas,” [James] Hatley Jr. said. “We started racing horse in 1963.” They all continue the legacy of their father and mother.
“My daddy was a trailblazer; we followed in his footsteps,” Hatley Jr. said. “When we started racing horses. When we went to the track we were the only Black people there.”
“We lost our dad in ‘06, we lost our mom in ‘08. We hadn’t run a horse competitively since 1990,” Hatley Jr. said. The brothers could remember going to the track back then with their dad and experiencing racism.
“We’d go to the race tracks, it’d be 500 to 600 white people and we’d be the only Blacks there and they’d cheat us so bad,” Gregory Hatley said.
Their parents overcoming the odds inspired them to come back 31 years later and race in 2021. “Everything we’ve accomplished, we’ve had to fight for,” Hatley said.
Per the video, there was no documentation of any post-operative care for BLM. The Hatley’s said they requested the horse to be shipped to a pathologist for an autopsy.
“It’s been a hard couple of days! But this is proof that Black people AND THIER PETS are neglected in all aspects of the medical fields. My children loved him and knew exactly what his name stood for. Now it’s gone! We will get justice for you big fella, you won your race. A longer video is on my story,” Keuundra said in the video’s caption.
It’s unclear if the Hatley’s will take legal action against the hospital , where BLM had his procedure. We are still awaiting the results from the autopsy. Hopefully, the outcome isn’t what some of us suspect (they neglected the horse because of his name). But would you be surprised? The words “Black lives matter” stir up something vicious in people these days.