If you’re a reasonable, decent, sentient person paying even half-assed attention to the credible and relentless news cycle regarding Roy Moore’s predilection for preying on underage girls, you will not be voting for him in Alabama’s special election for a senator today. The candidate arrived at the polls on horseback hoping to impress anyone and everyone else. But if you are one of those people whose moral standards could be swayed by a theatrical tableau of vintage Americana—but, like, Western iconography, as opposed to Southern, for some reason—allow me to point out that he seems to suck at riding a horse.
Granted, my decades of riding experience were almost exclusively English style, but I’m not sure you need highly specific equestrian bona fides to recognize that Sassy, Moore’s steed, is not all that well managed in this clip:
A looser rein is to be expected with a Western style of ride but a little less slack—see how far wide he has to swing his hands to navigate the assembled press?—would give the dishonorable judge the increased control this particular situation demands. Beyond that, his failure to steady himself using his seat (sorry to draw your attention there) or even the stirrups, cause him to rely on the reins to stay upright every time Sassy lunges forward. In the simplest terms: Pressure on the reins communicates to a horse that she should slow down or stop while pressure from the rider’s legs communicates that the horse should go or speed up. So while Moore is trying to ride away from the polling place, he’s also jerking his horse in the mouth, giving the animal conflicting signals and acting like a real asshole.