Why the Long Face?

Blinders , a documentary by gay stand-up comedian Donny Moss, explores the dark side of Central Park's iconic horse and carriage businesses.

BY Lawrence Ferber

March 12 2009 12:00 AM ET

BLInders 03 x390 (publicity) | advocate.com

What do you think his reaction might be?

He's commented on the issue publicly -- he says it's
great for tourists, tourists love it. He gives four-word sound
bites. To me, one of the most interesting angles from a gay
perspective is our [out lesbian] city council speaker,
Christine Quinn, is probably the number 1 reason why the bill
to ban horse-drawn carriages is languishing at City Hall. Right
while I was shooting
Blinders

there was this horrible accident on Central Park South where
this horse named Smoothie was spooked by a drum and went
barreling down the street with the carriage attached and
crashed into a tree and died over a 45-minute period. Another
horse saw what happened and also got spooked and hopped on top
of a Mercedes. When that took place this council member, Tony
Avella, who's now running for mayor, introduced a bill that
would ban horse-drawn carriages altogether. [Quinn] is
absolutely blocking this bill, which has so much support in the
city, but she wields so much power and basically dictates how
other council members are gonna vote and punishes them if they
don't vote her way.

I guess she's one of those rare women who doesn't
love horses.

She's really corrupt.

I found an allegation on a website that your film is
PETA-funded propaganda.

Yeah, that comes up if you Google me. That's [from] a carriage
driver. Of course the industry calls my movie propaganda. In
fact, I have no history in animal protection work at all. I
worked for a drug company and was a comedian before this. But
the industry's spokesperson calls me a "notorious
animal extremist" to reporters. It's ridiculous. The
industry says whatever they want because they know they can get
away with it and they have. They say they retire all their
horses when we know they get slaughtered for meat. I hired a
First Amendment and entertainment law firm to vet every clip in
the film and spent a fortune doing it. I didn't even need
to exaggerate, much less lie. The footage speaks volumes.

Alec Baldwin hosted the film's premiere at the New
York Public Library for the Performing Arts last June.
How did he become involved?

I met him at a party. I gave him a DVD and he called me and
said he just watched it and volunteered to host a screening. He
was so nice, so gracious and helpful, and even called Quinn,
who told him there's simply no support for this bill at City
Hall. What she failed to say is, "There's no support
because I'm blocking it."

Do you feel
Blinders

will resonate particularly with LGBT audiences, and if so in
what way?

As gay people, and I don't mean to sound trite, we know how it
feels to be treated poorly. So I would think they too would
feel obligated to speak up. I didn't go into this thinking I
would be an activist, but now that I know about this, I am.

Tags: Film

AddThis

READER COMMENTS ()

Quantcast