A video of a Northern Irish horse carriage driver’s homophobic and racist rant in New York City has stunned viewers.
It shows a carriage horse driver taunting a small group of female animal rights activists, including senior and African-American volunteers, with racist and homophobic slurs.
The women say they were peacefully handing out flyers during New York’s Pride weekend on 23 June, protesting the New York horse carriage industry which employs are large majority of Irish people.
He says: ‘Are you still bribing the politicians you [expletive]?’
He describes the women as a ‘fucking dyke convention’, and proceeds to call one of the African-American women a racist slur.
Tennis legend and lesbian Martina Navratilova one of the many who have written to City Council speaker Christine Quinn claiming the incident shows the industry needs an overhaul, the Belfast Telegraph reports.
Navratilova said the abuse directed at the women is proof ‘that everything about the industry is stuck in the 19th century’.
Quinn, who is a likely Democrat nominee for mayor, quickly condemned the horse carriage driver.
She said: ‘The behavior depicted in this video is reprehensible and unacceptable from anyone, and is especially unbefitting of an industry the City Council has made sure treats its animals humanely.’
Stephen Malone, a spokesman for the Horse and Carriage Association, told the Irish Voice that it was ‘definitely a bad moment for us without a doubt.’
However Malone said the driver, who has reportedly worked in the same job for 20 years, was provoked.
He said: ‘It needs to be brought to everyone’s attention the thousands of hours of harassment that is focused on us every Saturday and Sunday.’
According to Malone, the driver has now been disciplined.
Watch the video, which contains strong language, here: