Marking time

Marking time in January 2008

Saturday 26 January 2008

Romanian horse ban

In case you missed it: A post to the Transylvanian horseman blog encourages people to lobby the President of Romania to change a law recently imposed. The law prohibits horsedrawn vehicles on National Highways.

Yet in its race to modernize, the Romanian government has decided that tradition, and those millions who cling to it, are expendable. One of the most damaging laws recently enacted (Article 71 of the Highway Code) forbids horse-drawn vehicles from travelling on “national highways”. These are the regular roads between towns, not Interstates, Motorways or Autobahns, and run through one village after another. Often they are the roads used by farmers to access their fields, to get to market, to reach nearby woodland. It is a law that persecutes the majority of Romania’s population, an ill-conceived law more in character with former Communist dictator Nicolae Ceausescu than with modern Europe. Apparently the urban bureaucrats in Bucharest failed to consider that in many areas of the country the main road connecting the local towns and villages is the ONLY road available, and therefore, was designated as a national highway during the Communist era. They failed to see that, beyond the congested environs of Bucharest, many “national highways” are relatively quiet and safe for animal-drawn traffic to use. Some “national highways” are not even surfaced with asphalt or concrete. [from Transylvanian horseman].
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