Putting the Reins on the Rodeo
Another dedicated activist, Kiley Blackman, the founder
of Animal Defenders of Westchester (ADW), a grassroots group with
approximately 50 people on its mailing list, persevered until she got the
Bronx International Championship Rodeo canceled.
"It was canceled after its third time here," said Kiley,
who contacted the event's sponsors and local politicians, wrote letters to
the editor of area papers, and held high-profile demonstrations. "The
politicians originally blew me off," remarked Kiley. "I persisted to a
degree that I surprised even myself–because I am a pessimist, and they were
clearly 'married' to this rodeo."
Her diligence paid off just when she was starting to
lose hope. "I had asked John Dudley [the district manager] of Community
Board Three [which governs the district the rodeo was in] for a formal
meeting to show video, implements, etc., and we were in the process of
arranging it. I had faxed in a request, as per his direction. After a few
weeks, he called me at my job with the good news; I almost started crying
Kiley and other members of ADW are now using a similar
strategy to convince NBC Channel 4 to stop broadcasting bull riding.
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