My point was not the justice or injustice of feudalism but the relevance of the samurai as a military class. In effect there was no need of a military class in the Edo period which was really only from 1598 onward not several hundred years but less than three hundred (1878) if one were to be exact. When the imperial edict proscribing the wearing of swords was issued.
Of course samurai rode horses during the Edo period. They paraded back and forth from Edo to whatever province they came from on a regular basis because the Bakufu required the Daimyo to attend the capitol where their families were literally held hostage. Their saddles were made more for comfort than for security of seat in battle. Make no mistake the Tokugawa were cruel and paranoid masters. In many ways the Edo period was more cruel than the sengoku period. The samurai as effete and useless as they became later in that period, did not ride to war, did not fight much at all in fact. Ergo as a class were ineffectual and unnecessary. In times of peace, a man of war is shunned. The romantic notion of the proud warrior portrayed in popular folklore was in fact largely a myth. In the latter part of the Edo period, the samurai were mostly up to their eyebrows in debt to the rice merchants, having presold their stipends well beyond the next harvest. The 250 years of peace which was the Edo period, were not kind to the samurai at all. So you tell me.... when did the samurai cease to be the warrior class? (when the wounds that they received at the battle of Sekigahara healed)
All good police states need a lot of feet on the ground, and the samurai quickly adapted from soldiers to security forces...a soldier is a soldier no matter what you call them, they also became the civil servants who ran the country including police, fire, tax collection etc. They were able to keep the country under control rather bloodlessly right up to the end...and despite being called the "peacefull" period there was a lot of rebellion, riots, civil unrest, criminal gangs, etc...even a large war....they were not exactly hippies!! "ineffectual and unnecessary" I dont think so...they just changed with the times.