It sounds like the beginning of a bad joke. A horse walks into a nightclub…
But that’s exactly what happened at Mokai Lounge in South Beach on Thursday night, and the Internet is outraged.
A video of the incident — which starts out with a bikini clad woman riding bareback on a white horse through the crowded venue — has been making the rounds like wildfire. The animal is surrounded by clubgoers and suddenly drops to the ground and then bucks, throwing the woman off. People gasp and scream, and the horse looks terrified, attempting to bite someone. Then the video stops.
A Yelp user with the handle Tori S. posted a complaint on the club’s page: “Last night a horse was brought into this club and used as entertainment. I was happy to see the horse kicking the party goers. How disgusting. A night club is NOT a place for animals!”
Chimed in fellow Yelp user Laura D.: “DONT GO HERE. They promote ANIMAL ABUSE. They had a horse inside their packed night club struggling to get out. Their owner needs to be charged.”
Miami Beach community activist Michael DeFilippi shared the video on his Facebook page, imploring his friends to do the same: “ANIMAL ABUSE PLEASE SHARE! Mokai Lounge Miami Beach. Shocking footage of a horse in a horrible situation. This club should be stripped of their license to operate. Please share this video and contact animal groups who can help!”
A change.org petition entitled, “Miami Beach Police: Take action for animal abuse in Miami night club Mokai,” was quickly set up by a concerned citizen named Laura Sosa.
“People go to night clubs to have a good time, enjoy drinks with friends, dance and party,” the petition reads. “This environment is by no means a place for ANY animal or wildlife. A video of Miami nightclub, Mokai, showed a horse being ridden by a female employee and restrained by party goers in a struggle to run off. This is not only a danger to everybody in the night club, but the horses well being and safety. In the video you can see the horse stumbling and collapsing probably due to a floor wet from alcohol, stress from people capacity and music/lights. The question remains as to WHY a horse was let into the doors of Mokai in the first place, but the answer remains the same, ACTION MUST BE TAKEN for letting this happen.”
As of Friday morning it had 262 signatures out of the 500 needed. It asks you to email Miami Beach’s City manager at JimmyMorales@miamibeachfl.gov and ask him to revoke the club’s license.
Miami Beach police have responded and confirm that there is an investigation.
“Last night MBPD was made aware of this incident at Mokai. We are very concerned over the allegations,” reads a Tweet from the department. “As such, we have launched a joint investigation with @MiamiBeachNews Code Enforcement.”
This is not the first we’ve heard of a horse in a club.
Back in Studio 54’s heyday, Bianca Jagger rode a similar looking horse inside the wild NYC club in May 1977 for her birthday celebration.
“It was a beautiful white horse that reminded me of mine,” Jagger wrote in a letter to UK’s Financial Times in 2015 to set the record straight. “I made the foolish decision to get on it for a few minutes … No doubt you will agree with me that it is one thing to, on the spur of the moment, to get on a horse in a nightclub, but it is quite another to ride in on one. As an environmentalist and an animal rights defender I find the insinuation that I would ride a horse into a nightclub offensive … I hope that you can understand the difference between ‘coming in’ on a horse and getting on one.”