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Eventing Nation booted from covering Event in Unionville, PA

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    Originally posted by Virginia Horse Mom View Post


    She’s now the Managing Director for Eventing with USEF actually. Apparently USEF was looped in on communications that came from EN and Leslie Wylie though, as well as Rob Burk with USEA.

    It’s an interesting connection between EN and Jenni Autry for sure though.
    Good catch, thanks.

    Comment


      Here is the EN article when she got the job.

      https://eventingnation.com/jenni-aut...r-of-eventing/

      Comment


        Nancy Jaffer just published this... it’s an interesting read.

        Some pretty nice words from Jimmy Wofford about Denis Glaccum are included in it.

        http://nancyjaffer.com/its-all-about...denis-glaccum/

        Comment


          Originally posted by Virginia Horse Mom View Post
          I certainly agree EN has been made a scapegoat. But... they seem to have continued digging for multiple days now.

          Many folks have unflattering things to say about Denis. And if you read the email from Mr. Walker to both he and Rob Burk on September 14... the tone towards Denis is very polite, but definitely not what I would call friendly.
          I disagree that EN was made a scapegoat. They made themselves a "scapegoat" and continue to do so.

          I don't know Denis from Adam, but I doubt VERY much this was all a subtle maneuver/excuse from the landowner to get out from the lease. The landowner could (and did) revoke the lease when he felt like it, and he seems to have felt like it because of the implied insults to his family by EN. If there was bad blood with Denis, he could have done so at any point over the last 20 years. I don't believe in that level of coincidence.

          Comment


            Originally posted by fordtraktor View Post

            I disagree that EN was made a scapegoat. They made themselves a "scapegoat" and continue to do so.

            I don't know Denis from Adam, but I doubt VERY much this was all a subtle maneuver/excuse from the landowner to get out from the lease. The landowner could (and did) revoke the lease when he felt like it, and he seems to have felt like it because of the implied insults to his family by EN. If there was bad blood with Denis, he could have done so at any point over the last 20 years. I don't believe in that level of coincidence.
            Oh - I CERTAINLY agree with you that the landowner wasn’t looking for an out with respect to the lease with Plantation Field Equestrian Events (of which Denis is apparently President). Nope... this clearly seems to be directly a result of the approach taken by multiple folks when it came to concerns about the name of the venue.

            I don’t know Denis either personally... but he is described as a quite outspoken personality. I only meant to concede the point that the combination of personalities involved on both sides of this situation was probably a significant contributing factor in terms of how ugly it got.

            On a side note... Nancy Jaffer just put out a really nice article on Dennis Glaccum’s LONG history with respect to US Eventing for anyone who is curious. I thought it was a good read, and I would link if I could... but when I tried my post went to that sad unapproved place where posts go to die sometimes...

            Comment


              https://nancyjaffer.com/author/njaffer/

              Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.
              Alfred A. Montapert

              Comment


                pluvinel - Thx!

                Comment


                  https://eventingnation.com/helen-cas...y-cant-see-us/

                  I don’t want to invalidate any of Helen’s concerns but here is a link to her essay, it’s still there! The header contains links to all of the other essays as well

                  Comment


                    HelenC Thank you so much for sharing, and so disappointed that they have not given you the courtesy of a response. Those were two very eloquently written emails, with grace and tact.

                    I am also genuinely discouraged, and angry, to hear of your experience in MA -- so I also apologize. There is absolutely no excuse If you are still in MA and ever need a riding buddy at a social distance, I'm right outside of Boston as well.

                    No one will blame you for the loss of PF. Hope your guy heals ASAP and hope to see you out and about at events next year!!
                    AETERNUM VALE, INVICTUS - 7/10/2012

                    Comment


                      If I were the landowner, I would also be more offended if they started referring to it as P***** Field, instead of just calling it the Unionville Event or something. The P***** is clearly pointing out that the word is so offensive that it shall not be uttered. Every other instance of words not spelled out this way are generally extremely offensive words.

                      Plus, just as N***** is now "the N word" would that make P**** the P word? Would we be eventing at Pee Field?

                      Comment


                        Originally posted by Xanthoria View Post
                        "they felt the name “Plantation” was insensitive to people of color." - it is. And peoples who have not been enslaved can never understand that pain. The only right response is to accept the pain and do what you can to listen and respond appropriately. Ditching the word "plantation" is such a tiny gesture - it is the very least they could do. If anyone throws their toys out of the pram over this... wow...
                        Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Words can hurt even when the pain is NOT visible. EN addressed a word, which in the grand scheme of life, is small, yet with consequences. On the hard things in life, one often stands alone. Racism is like the dust on the fridge, out of sight, out of mind-be the cloth to wipe it off.
                        Bethe Mounce
                        Head Trainer, AmeriCan Romance Equestrian
                        https://www.facebook.com/AmericanRomanceEquestrian
                        Brentwood CA

                        Comment


                          Originally posted by pluvinel

                          This is not about racism....this is about what a landowner can do with his land. If someone has a political agenda, they can pontificate from their own $multi-million property.

                          If I were the landowner, going along for 20 years.....minding my own business.....and this s***t hit the internet, you can bet I would cancel the contract so fast your head would spin.

                          Given the BS being spouted on the internet, the event going on this weekend is lucky that it was allowed to continue.
                          I see we have differences when it comes to words and their differing meanings based on life experiences. Not gonna hash this out. Stated my thoughts, my opinion. Not interested in being "right."
                          Bethe Mounce
                          Head Trainer, AmeriCan Romance Equestrian
                          https://www.facebook.com/AmericanRomanceEquestrian
                          Brentwood CA

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by pluvinel

                            This is not about racism....this is about what a landowner can do with his land. If someone has a political agenda, they can pontificate from their own $multi-million property.

                            If I were the landowner, going along for 20 years.....minding my own business.....and this s***t hit the internet, you can bet I would cancel the contract so fast your head would spin.

                            Given the BS being spouted on the internet, the event going on this weekend is lucky that it was allowed to continue.
                            ^^^ This ^^^

                            Which makes the timing of multiple aspects of this story (as well as a number of communications that apparently went back and forth between a few key people in the days immediately preceding the event...) truly a head scratcher.

                            Comment


                              A little be of a rehash. But I thought it was interesting to line up these communications in chronological order. And in the context of what we know so far about the communications that led to the lease termination.

                              Originally posted by TotB View Post
                              Well I guess the truth is coming out.

                              "However, in a letter to Eventing Nation dated Sept. 13 and signed by Rob Burk that The Horse received from a lawyer, Burk stated, “For your information, the USEA will be making clear moves to remove the use of the word plantation from our media, marketing and communications. Those moves will be made after we have been able to go through the proper channels and notify all involved with the competition and important stakeholders.”

                              "The Horse was told that this was the final straw that caused Plantation Field owner Cuyler Walker to terminate the lease."

                              https://patha.org/statement-from-use...ntation-field/
                              (Might just be pointless semantics - but if the Sep. 13th "letter" was the final straw that led Mr. Walker to cancel the lease the next day, then it must have been an email rather than a letter. A letter would be unlikely to reach anyone on the same day, especially a Sunday.)

                              So according to this account, although the "letter" was addressed to EN, somehow Mr. Walker saw it, or became aware of it, on or before noon on Monday (possibly less than 24 hours after it was sent).

                              The email below that terminated the lease was sent at 12:55 pm, Monday the 14th. It is a reply to an email from Rob Burk/USEA that the time stamp indicates came in about 45 minutes before. We don't have the content of that email.

                              So, if these facts are as they seem, according to accounts made public so far ... [feel free to correct errors, add facts ...]

                              - Communications about the name 'Plantation' had been going on since June between EN, PFEE, USEA, and who knows who else.

                              - At some point there was a PFEE board meeting in which EN participated. EN's remarks urging a name change left several board members feeling highly offended. Some felt that they were threatened with more pressure from a broader media base if they did not change the name.

                              - Other communications/actions that we do not know would also have occurred.
                              Upshot: PFEE was not changing the name. The USEA considered calling it "Unionville" as does the FEI.

                              Then:

                              - Rob Burk sent the Sunday Sep. 13th email to EN (per the quote above).

                              - Mr. Walker became aware of that email on Sunday or Monday morning, according to The Horse article.

                              - At some point there was a communication from Rob Burk that the USEA would use "P***" for 'Plantation', and both Mr. Walker and EN were aware of that as well.

                              - As we see in the email image below, at about noon on Monday, Burk sent an email to Mr. Walker with the subject "Time to talk?" at 12:08 pm Monday Sep. 14th, but we don't know the content. We also don't know if it was part of a longer email chain, or when that chain would have begun.

                              - Mr Walker replied 45 minutes later with clearly deeply injured feelings, terminating the lease and addressing his remarks to Denis Glaccum, who is copied on the reply.


                              I have added some pointers to things in the image below that, IMO, may provide clues to help cast light on Mr. Walker's reaction. Again IMO, the additional context that has gradually leaked out makes it look like less of a sudden knee-jerk reaction than it seemed at first. The pressure had been building for some time, and so had the resistance.

                              Although the email from Cuyler Walker is a reply to Rob Burk/USEA, copying Denis Glaccum and another person, the remarks are addressed directly to Denis Glaccum. Not that it matters, they were all on the email. But Mr. Walker did not address the remarks to Rob Burk who he was replying to, although obviously he intended that Burk would see them.

                              From the beginning I have thought that it was telling that Mr. Walker attributed the "smear campaign" to "the media", without naming any particular media organization. Now we know that since June he had been hearing from *both* EN *and* the USEA regarding their coverage of the event.

                              Click image for larger version

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                              With a caveat that I feel a bit stalker-ish and creepy about posting these private emails like this. But this is the thread that is trying to figure out what happened to this fixture in the sport and which parties should assume accountability. Readers/eventers are working out what they feel their response should be to the facts - if we ever have a complete picture of the facts, of course.

                              One thing that stands out to me is the sentiment "I would never have allowed any of you on the property". He's generalizing the blame, obviously. But more importantly, whatever good times, people met, bonding experiences and charitable benefit occurred over the last 20 years, he would give it all up to have never been exposed to whatever has been said to him, whatever discussions have been had, about the 'Plantation' name of his farm.

                              I'm sure there is much more to know, and we may or may not ever have the complete story.

                              Comment


                                Originally posted by OverandOnward View Post
                                A little be of a rehash. But I thought it was interesting to line up these communications in chronological order. And in the context of what we know so far about the communications that led to the lease termination.



                                (Might just be pointless semantics - but if the Sep. 13th "letter" was the final straw that led Mr. Walker to cancel the lease the next day, then it must have been an email rather than a letter. A letter would be unlikely to reach anyone on the same day, especially a Sunday.)

                                So according to this account, although the "letter" was addressed to EN, somehow Mr. Walker saw it, or became aware of it, on or before noon on Monday (possibly less than 24 hours after it was sent).

                                The email below that terminated the lease was sent at 12:55 pm, Monday the 14th. It is a reply to an email from Rob Burk/USEA that the time stamp indicates came in about 45 minutes before. We don't have the content of that email.

                                So, if these facts are as they seem, according to accounts made public so far ... [feel free to correct errors, add facts ...]

                                - Communications about the name 'Plantation' had been going on since June between EN, PFEE, USEA, and who knows who else.

                                - At some point there was a PFEE board meeting in which EN participated. EN's remarks urging a name change left several board members feeling highly offended. Some felt that they were threatened with more pressure from a broader media base if they did not change the name.

                                - Other communications/actions that we do not know would also have occurred.
                                Upshot: PFEE was not changing the name. The USEA considered calling it "Unionville" as does the FEI.

                                Then:

                                - Rob Burk sent the Sunday Sep. 13th email to EN (per the quote above).

                                - Mr. Walker became aware of that email on Sunday or Monday morning, according to The Horse article.

                                - At some point there was a communication from Rob Burk that the USEA would use "P***" for 'Plantation', and both Mr. Walker and EN were aware of that as well.

                                - As we see in the email image below, at about noon on Monday, Burk sent an email to Mr. Walker with the subject "Time to talk?" at 12:08 pm Monday Sep. 14th, but we don't know the content. We also don't know if it was part of a longer email chain, or when that chain would have begun.

                                - Mr Walker replied 45 minutes later with clearly deeply injured feelings, terminating the lease and addressing his remarks to Denis Glaccum, who is copied on the reply.


                                I have added some pointers to things in the image below that, IMO, may provide clues to help cast light on Mr. Walker's reaction. Again IMO, the additional context that has gradually leaked out makes it look like less of a sudden knee-jerk reaction than it seemed at first. The pressure had been building for some time, and so had the resistance.

                                Although the email from Cuyler Walker is a reply to Rob Burk/USEA, copying Denis Glaccum and another person, the remarks are addressed directly to Denis Glaccum. Not that it matters, they were all on the email. But Mr. Walker did not address the remarks to Rob Burk who he was replying to, although obviously he intended that Burk would see them.

                                From the beginning I have thought that it was telling that Mr. Walker attributed the "smear campaign" to "the media", without naming any particular media organization. Now we know that since June he had been hearing from *both* EN *and* the USEA regarding their coverage of the event.

                                Click image for larger version  Name:	PlantationFields-USEA-edit-2020-09-16.jpg Views:	0 Size:	20.1 KB ID:	10733846



















                                With a caveat that I feel a bit stalker-ish and creepy about posting these private emails like this. But this is the thread that is trying to figure out what happened to this fixture in the sport and which parties should assume accountability. Readers/eventers are working out what they feel their response should be to the facts - if we ever have a complete picture of the facts, of course.

                                One thing that stands out to me is the sentiment "I would never have allowed any of you on the property". He's generalizing the blame, obviously. But more importantly, whatever good times, people met, bonding experiences and charitable benefit occurred over the last 20 years, he would give it all up to have never been exposed to whatever has been said to him, whatever discussions have been had, about the 'Plantation' name of his farm.

                                I'm sure there is much more to know, and we may or may not ever have the complete story.
                                THIS ^^^^^ is why a landowner would not want to have anything to do with this debacle.

                                This is private property. Assuming he has complied with the land use contract, the land owner does not need to justify what he does with his land.....to anyone.....and certainly not to publicly date this on the internet.
                                Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.
                                Alfred A. Montapert

                                Comment


                                  Originally posted by pluvinel
                                  It is not about words.....it is about property rights.
                                  As I keep saying.....My Barn -- My Rules.

                                  EN thought they could pressure a land owner.....to take action on land they did not own. Er...no.

                                  If I were this landowner, and this s***t hit the internet.....you can bet the contract would have been cancelled like yesterday.
                                  On the one hand, despite my strong reservations about the name in the current environment, I do understand this perspective. I'd probably be just as angry and defensive - but I also hope I'd be open enough to take a long head-clearing walk and then work to better understand what the other side was saying, and why. Ideally - it's always easier to idealize when one is not on the spot at present.

                                  On the other hand, MBMR is the micro, inside-the-bubble view. It's only as big as the property itself. It excludes a larger world of people. That's ok - unless one has intentionally opened up a national-scale venue that is now living in the big, macro world.

                                  The host invited the guests, so the host is assuming the greater part of the burden of having them. When the host invites so many people in from everywhere, the host joins the hospitality industry. That's just reality. Think of what the average hotel manager puts up with from guests. The adaptations and adjustments for all of the personal quirks they bring, including their perceptions. But the hotel invited them, so it's up to the hotel to deal with it.

                                  A look at how hotels package and market their product is an interesting view of the guests they want to attract. To grow an event, we have to think about that, too.

                                  So yes - we have to do well by the landowners and treat them with the utmost gratitude and respect. But realistically the LO has to opt in as well. Otherwise it won't work. We have to work with the LO's, and we have to be sure they understand (as best possible) what is coming and be willing to deal with it. There is only so much we can do to cushion the rough edges.

                                  If a LO has limitations and restrictions, then using the land means scaling back accordingly to keep the LO comfortable. It would seem that in this case there was a collision between the ambition of growing the event against accommodating the preferences of the LO.

                                  Welcoming and accommodating a broad scale of guests is not about property rights. It is about words and perceptions. The host invited them, and by doing that, the host opted in.

                                  If the host wants to stand on property rights and personal whims, scale it back to a population of guests that will be more comfortable for the host.

                                  It looks more and more as if this could have been handled much better and the LO treated with more consideration. But we don't know the whole story. In the end, the problem is still the same - the name as it is right now doesn't resonate cleanly on a large scale, and risks alienating some of the very people the event claims that it would like to have as guests. That's a conflict with MBMR. So there has to be a decision about which direction the event will go, how openly welcoming it will be to which audience, if it can be resurrected at all.

                                  Comment


                                    Originally posted by pluvinel View Post

                                    THIS ^^^^^ is why a landowner would not want to have anything to do with this debacle.

                                    This is private property. Assuming he has complied with the land use contract, the land owner does not need to justify what he does with his land.....to anyone.....and certainly not to publicly date this on the internet.
                                    And THAT is why it is beginning to look as if the preferences of the LO are not aligned with the ambition of growing the event to such a large-scale audience, both attending and following from a distance.

                                    Unless a way could be found to accommodate those larger sensibilities and still satisfy the LO's understandable wish to acknowledge the history of the land. Somehow the conversation didn't seem to go in that direction. From the fragments we know.

                                    Comment


                                      Originally posted by OverandOnward View Post

                                      On the one hand, despite my strong reservations about the name in the current environment, I do understand this perspective. I'd probably be just as angry and defensive - but I also hope I'd be open enough to take a long head-clearing walk and then work to better understand what the other side was saying, and why. Ideally - it's always easier to idealize when one is not on the spot at present.

                                      On the other hand, MBMR is the micro, inside-the-bubble view. It's only as big as the property itself. It excludes a larger world of people. That's ok - unless one has intentionally opened up a national-scale venue that is now living in the big, macro world.

                                      The host invited the guests, so the host is assuming the greater part of the burden of having them. When the host invites so many people in from everywhere, the host joins the hospitality industry. That's just reality. Think of what the average hotel manager puts up with from guests. The adaptations and adjustments for all of the personal quirks they bring, including their perceptions. But the hotel invited them, so it's up to the hotel to deal with it.

                                      A look at how hotels package and market their product is an interesting view of the guests they want to attract. To grow an event, we have to think about that, too.

                                      So yes - we have to do well by the landowners and treat them with the utmost gratitude and respect. But realistically the LO has to opt in as well. Otherwise it won't work. We have to work with the LO's, and we have to be sure they understand (as best possible) what is coming and be willing to deal with it. There is only so much we can do to cushion the rough edges.

                                      If a LO has limitations and restrictions, then using the land means scaling back accordingly to keep the LO comfortable. It would seem that in this case there was a collision between the ambition of growing the event against accommodating the preferences of the LO.

                                      Welcoming and accommodating a broad scale of guests is not about property rights. It is about words and perceptions. The host invited them, and by doing that, the host opted in.

                                      If the host wants to stand on property rights and personal whims, scale it back to a population of guests that will be more comfortable for the host.

                                      It looks more and more as if this could have been handled much better and the LO treated with more consideration. But we don't know the whole story. In the end, the problem is still the same - the name as it is right now doesn't resonate cleanly on a large scale, and risks alienating some of the very people the event claims that it would like to have as guests. That's a conflict with MBMR. So there has to be a decision about which direction the event will go, how openly welcoming it will be to which audience, if it can be resurrected at all.
                                      Huh????

                                      The "host" (landowner) did not invite people on his land. He allowed people on his land. He did not sign on to be Hilton of Unionville.

                                      The people who ride on his property are his GUESTS who are allowed on someone's property thru the good graces of the owner. Guests owe the host the courtesy of considerate and polite behavior.

                                      Or perhaps having consideration and being polite are outdated concepts these days.

                                      Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.
                                      Alfred A. Montapert

                                      Comment


                                        Originally posted by OverandOnward View Post

                                        And THAT is why it is beginning to look as if the preferences of the LO are not aligned with the ambition of growing the event to such a large-scale audience, both attending and following from a distance.

                                        Unless a way could be found to accommodate those larger sensibilities and still satisfy the LO's understandable wish to acknowledge the history of the land. Somehow the conversation didn't seem to go in that direction. From the fragments we know.
                                        Then perhaps USEA needs to think about spending $$$$ to buy their own properties upon which they can choose to run whatever events they want and not rely on the good will of land owners.
                                        Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.
                                        Alfred A. Montapert

                                        Comment


                                          I want to know what prompted all of this. Some are saying that EN decided to choose this as an attempt to be seen as "woke", and that they never discussed it with any POC. Some of those same people said it would be different if it had been a black person going to the event organizers themselves and saying they felt hurt by it. But I thought I read in the EN article that they did have several people bring up this issue to them.

                                          If there were several POC that initiated all of this by going to EN and the USEA saying, hey, this name really bothers us, is there something we can do about it, would that have been better? Because for all we know, that could have happened.

                                          I think it's interesting that people are trying to make this into a "land owner has the right to do what he wants with his property" argument. No one, including EN, has said that he doesn't. He has every right to take away access to his property because he doesn't want to be involved in this. That really isn't the issue. I think he could have tried to do something different, but I don't completely fault him for that. It IS his land.

                                          The more info comes out, the more it looks like it was handled badly on all sides. I still think the sentiment behind it was solid, there appears to be a decent amount of people bothered by the name, or not wanting the name associated with the sport (like we really need more impressions that all equestrian sports are only for rich white people), and it could have been a productive conversation involving everyone. If it came down to it though, I would side with EN and the USEA simply because they are trying to do the right thing. It was an attempt at a step in the right direction. Change won't come easily or immediately though. I mean, God, look at the push back just on here about the possibility of the name changing. Not really any easy answers on this.

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