Mar 10, 2010

Have You Heard the One About the "Campaign" to Encourage Dressage Riders to Wear Helmets?

I write "campaign" primarily because it seems like a big show, a way to capitalize on the events du jour.  If you haven't heard, Heather Blitz, a professional dressage rider, has issued a call to action.  A call for all dressage riders to wear their helmets when riding.  So, you think, this is great!  What's your beef, BunnyRider?  Well, since you asked....

Initially, I was charmed by her zeal.  What better way to promote wearing a helmet than to have a premier, professional dressage rider wear hers while on the circuit in Florida?  Ahhhh...but it's actually not that cut-and-dry.  Let's put aside my inclinations to simply roll my eyes when hearing about her campaign.  Oh look, Ma, a rider who rarely wore a helmet previously is now calling on everyone to wear one.  You know, because of the tragedy.  Then, I realized that was just being ridiculous.  I can't expect people to change if I ridicule them for doing so.  She deserves congratulations, right?  Well, no actually.  All it seems that Heather has managed to do is capitalize on Courtney's accident to raise her profile through this campaign-sham.  You may think all is hunky-dory if you simply looked at her facebook fan page with this photo of her in a helmet displayed prominently.  You might think that she is as good as her word.  Especially when you glance over at her horse's fan page, with the photos posted of her warm-up ride at the Palm Beach Derby.  Yep.  Helmet, check.  Oops...but if you click to view all of the photos from her warm-up ride, you'll find this little gem.  If I am not mistaken (and I don't think I am) it is a photo of Heather swapping out her helmet for her top hat.  You know, for the actual showing part of the day.  I guess her little helmet-wearing campaign doesn't extend to showing.  Just warm-ups and schooling.  Talk about really going out on a limb for something you believe in.

I call this a major FAIL.

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