Monty Roberts Dupes News Media

John Dolan

There’s a horse trainer named Monty Roberts who seemingly took the United States by storm a couple of years ago. He’s a best-selling author of his book “The Man Who Listens to Horses”, the tale of his tortured childhood, his prowess with horses, his recognition by the Queen of England. Great story telling.

After the book was published by Random House, it was everywhere and so was Monty Roberts, on television, on radio, crying his tales of childhood abuses at the hands of his father, giving fancy training demonstrations called “Join-Up” using the “language of Equus”, along with other long-known methods that only he, it seems, could promote in his uniquely charismatic manner. He became the latest cult figure to the masses of horse people around the world. His book is translated in a slew of languages and he still makes jaunts to the Queen’s hangout. Monty Roberts became in many people’s eyes the savior of all horses from various abuses and misguided training methods. He made it sound as if no other trainer on the face of the earth ever promoted good will and common sense to equines.

Then from the bowels of his past, came family members with their own tales of Monty’s childhood. These tales weren’t so dramatic: no abuse at the hands of his father, no complicity by a lax mother, no great film career or friendship with James Dean. Little by little they whittled down Monty’s great manhood to a series of lies, deceits and abuses, not to him, but by him.

But where was the news media? Why didn’t Random House or another large entity publish “Horse Whispers & Lies”, the book that counters Monty Roberts’ own? Where were the television cameras, the top reporters from NBC’s “Dateline”? Where was the Los Angeles Times? Only “Horse & Rider” magazine and TIME had the gumption to publish an article unfavorable to him – although it must be said that TIME’s article was a mere shadow of revelations to come. Why was no one interviewing the scores of people who spoke against Monty Roberts?

Monty Roberts’ public relations person did an amazingly good job getting him to be seen and heard around the world. The truth, however, had no public relations person, so the media just ignored the controversy that’s been brewing for well over a year. The media has ignored the three major lawsuits surrounding Monty Roberts. And, since one of the lawsuits against him has been settled out of court, and another on its way to the same conclusion, it only ensures that the public will never know the extent of the evidence against him. One other lawsuit that this author knows of remains outstanding until March of next year. I will not place any bets on the winner but will only say that Monty Roberts is rich and the plaintiffs are poor. Who do you think has more funds to hire top notch lawyers who will do everything in their power to protect Monty Roberts’ bad name?

Where are the news honchos protecting the public’s right to know? They’re still kneeling at the altar of the man who only thinks he listens to horses.