In January 2015, six of Baltimore’s arabbers — the men who sell produce around the city from horse-drawn carts — were arrested and charged with animal abuse; 14 of their horses were seized. More than a year later, the city has dropped all charges against the men, but some are worried that the incident marked the beginning of the end for one of Baltimore’s traditions.
The Sun reported that during the trial the city’s expert witness testified that there wasn’t actually anything wrong with the horses. Even so, the 14 animals have long since been adopted from the animal rescue charity where they were sent last year.
The national news media loves writing about the arabbers; I suppose they serve as a useful symbol of Baltimore’s quirky, anachronistic side. But they’re also people who love their animals and are trying to make a living; this case has made that more difficult for them. As Dan Rodricks wrote in the Sun this weekend, “Instead of seeing arabbers as walking anachronisms or public nuisances, we should find a safe, sustainable way to maintain and celebrate their existence, see that the horses are treated well, and that the arabbers are able to make a decent living selling fresh fruit and vegetables around the city.”
Latest posts by Rachel Monroe (see all)
- The Effect of a Dilapidated Home on a Baltimore Block - September 19, 2017
- The Ku Klux Klan Is Apparently Still Alive and Well in Maryland - August 24, 2017
- Baltimore May Be Getting a Professional Soccer Team - September 16, 2016