Okay, this may show up twice, so if it does I apologize. I wrote this and scheduled it for posting at 1:00 a.m. but it hasn't shown up.
Most of you are aware of my rantings about the ridiculous court decision in Connecticut that horses as a species are "inherently vicious animals, with a tendency to do mischief and bite." The whole thing goes back to 2006, when a father put his two year old son up against a horse's face, despite signs warning "do not pet or feed the horses". So, even though it was his fault, being a responsible parent he sued the farmer. The CT Superior Court, which first heard the case, rightly tossed it out, saying the father was responsible for his son's injuries. So the father appealed, and somehow convinced the Appellate Court that not only was the horse who bit his son vicious, but all horses are. The farmer, CT Horse Council, and CT Farm Bureau appealed to the CT Supreme Court, who heard the case in September, but has not issued a ruling. If the decision is not overturned, horses will be classified the same as wild animals kept in zoos in CT (the only state where horses will be declared "vicious". That means horses in CT will be uninsurable, and will basically disappear from the state. Luckily, Governor Malloy has finally done something right. He's introduced a bill in the legislature which will declare that "domesticated horses, ponies, donkeys, and mules ARE NOT inherently vicious". If the bill passes, and no one can see why it won't (unless the lawyers, seeing a chance for more money disappearing, get their hands on it), it will nullify any adverse court decision.
What does this have to do with horses in the Old West, you ask? Simply this. Horses have been humankind's partners for centuries. Without the horse, the West would never have been settled, and the Native Americans like the Comanches would never have become one of the world's greatest cavalries. It's a sad state of affairs that our society has come to when horses, which have served us so nobly, can be declared "vicious".