Greek-born musician Tommy Lee asks Greece to end donkey rides in Santorini 2

Athens born Mötley Crüe musician Tommy Lee has called for an end to donkeys and mule rides in Santorini, sending a letter to the Greek government to officially cease the practice of using the animals as “taxi rides.”

“I’m honored to have been born in Athens, and wherever I tour with Mötley Crüe, I proudly proclaim my Greek heritage,” writes Lee. “But there’s an issue souring the reputation of Greece that I hope you’ll help resolve: the sickening abuse of broken-down donkeys and mules made to lug tourists up steep hills on Santorini.”

In a letter to Greek parliament member Mavroudis Voridis, who is the Minister for Agricultural Development and Food, Lee notes that during a trip to Santorini, he witnessed many donkeys and mules struggling with weight and luggage, which he claims, “still haunts me.”

“I was especially angry to learn that a law passed just a few years ago to help the donkeys, isn’t being enforced,” Lee says in the letter, “Tourists pile on to struggling donkeys, who are forced to carry humans up and down the 500 steps from the port to Firá’s old town several times a day.”

Greek-born musician Tommy Lee asks Greece to end donkey rides in Santorini 3
*Tommy Lee asks Greek government to end donkey rides

Read the full letter, via PETA, below.

Dear Minister Voridis,

I’m honored to have been born in Athens, and wherever I tour with Mötley Crüe, I proudly proclaim my Greek heritage. But there’s an issue souring the reputation of Greece that I hope you’ll help resolve: the sickening abuse of broken-down donkeys and mules made to lug tourists up steep hills on Santorini. I visited the island this summer on a yacht trip—we docked there for two days, and I refused to ride a donkey up to the city center.

I just saw this story about it on CNN and decided to join my friends at PETA in trying to stop this cruelty. I was especially angry to learn that a law passed just a few years ago to help the donkeys isn’t being enforced. Tourists should take Santorini’s cool cable car! Instead, they pile on to struggling donkeys, who are forced to carry humans up and down the 500 steps from the port to Firá’s old town several times a day. Ill-fitting saddles cause inflamed wounds that often go untreated. Animals have no protection from the scorching Greek sun and are only rarely granted short breaks. They’re even denied food and water. The video footage of these suffering animals haunts me.

I understand that you have the power to stop this cruelty and make Santorini hospitable to both tourists and animals. Please put an immediate end to the old-school cruelty of “animal taxis.” I look forward to your response. Thanks for your time and consideration.

Sincerely,

Tommy Lee”


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