The 4th race at Finger Lakes yesterday afternoon was 10-year-old Futurazo’s 85th in a “career” that began when George Bush was still president. It was also his last – “pulled up at 1/4 pole, euthanized on track” (Gaming Commission).

And so Racing consumes another. But before we move on to the next, please take a moment to contemplate the suffering, the anguish, that this pathetic creature was made to endure over his ten short (long) years on the planet. In addition to the obvious – the whipping, the drugging, the buying and selling – there were the privations: an innately free-roaming animal confined to a dark, dinky, dusty stall for 23 hours a day or more; a naturally social being kept utterly socially isolated. No herd for comfort and security. No family for love and affection. Heartbreaking.

So the next time you read about one of these deaths (and the wait won’t be long), think about what came before. The kill, in fact, is but the final cruelty, the shattered leg or failed heart one last bit of pain in a life defined by it.

This is horseracing.

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