Why would there be such a website, I'm thinking? Seems kind of fishy to me.
It's run by an Ocala newspaper. I don't think it's a joke, and not sure why it'd be "fishy" - FL makes it pretty easy to dig up information on people who have been arrested/booked for something. There was a huge issue a few years ago w/ a horse show announcer - pretty sure it was "discovered" on a website just like this.
This is no laughing matter. I'm horrified that people find humor in this.
This is a man who sustained serious brain injury. His life is obviously in deep disarray, probably with a pile-up of alienated friends and family who've tried but failed to help him.
(Also, HIV isn't the death sentence it once was. The US finally lifted the inhumane, discriminatory restrictions which banned HIV+ people from visiting the US for 22 years. Let's not slide back into cooties mode, okay?)
You know I agree that this is sad, most especially for the poor individual who brought the charges. But as far as the topic not being appropriate for this venue, well, that I'm not so sure of.
This individual has over the years consistently promoted himself (and been promoted by the higher-ups) as the "face" of eventing (and from a PR persepctive rightly so--he's attractive, well-spoken, humorous, and rode a big black stallion, doesn't get easier for the mainstream media than that, LOL). Then with all the main stream publicity following his accident, he truly became the public face of eventing. In addition, his ad is at the top of the forum. As I have warned for years, as a quasi member of the horse media, there is a price to be paid for wanting to be a star. This is it.
About a decade or more ago Mark Todd was embroiled in a scandal in the UK. Big flashy headlines in mainstream newspapers and magazines over there, paparazzi following him, sordid interviews with supposed lovers, drug dealers, etc. I said then, back on the USEA BB, that if we push our sport in to the mainstream, such as it is in Europe, these are the kinds of things we should expect from time to time.
And looky here.
I'm as sorry as I can be for all involved, truly, but there is no way this isn't a relevant, pertinent topic.
i agree phoenix farm. he is an individual who portrays himself as a role model to not just kids but adults who are involved in this sport. if you put yourself out there you need to me ready to deal with the consequences when you choose conduct yourselves in a manner that is not worthy of the admiration. you need to be held accountable for your consequences. just beacause he is a public figure does not give him the righ to anonymity that others are not privy to.