I've never really been a big fan of horse racing. Might be something to do with the fact my Grandad had a gambling problem and used to waste his money on horses and pokies. And he never looked happy doing so either.
But as I've learnt more, I've found that the culture around Melbourne Cup has two main problems. 1. Death of horses. 2. Waste.
1. If you want to learn more about horse deaths and the issues, I would highly recommend reading this 2020 report https://horseracingkills.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/Deathwatch2020.pdf
It is very clear about the impact that racing has on animals.
2. In relation to waste, there are a few issues. Firstly, the fashion industry, with Melbourne cup fashions. People could be wearing second hand, or re-wearing outfits etc. The same goes for fascinators. And there is also a problem with the ethics around the making of those clothes. Secondly, the food waste from the leftover of the Melbourne cup always looks dreadful. With this year being the exception, around the country, lunches with single use plates and cutlery are served, food and beverages at the Melbourne cup itself also ends up as litter on the ground, and the food waste from making the items is also a big contributer.
So all in all, I'm not a big fan of the day. I think the culture needs to change. But I said the same about Halloween a few days ago. I feel like with every celebration that we normally have, I get a little bit cranky with the culture of waste at celebrations. And maybe it just makes me 'not a very fun person.'