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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

POLL: Should elephants be a part of the circus?

UPDATE 2/19: A zebra from the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus got free in downtown Atlanta this afternoon and was eventually caught between lanes of traffic on the Downtown Connector. Here’s the story: “Circus zebra leads police on wild chase.” PETA has asked for an investigation into the zebra escape.
ELEPHANT LUNCH (Small)

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus elephants dined on fruits and bread in Centennial Olympic Park in 2006. Every time the circus comes to town, it renews the animal welfare discussion. AJC file photo

Two animal rights groups contacted Mayor Kasim Reed this week to ask him to keep elephants away from Atlanta when Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus opens its show at Philips Arena today.

From the AJC story:

Captive Animals Rescue and Enforcement wrote a letter to Reed dated Wednesday with the request. They say the elephant ran amok during a pre-show last week in Columbia, S.C. and endangered about 100 spectators. The organization wrote it “strongly suspect that she was trying to escape from the abuse that commonly takes place backstage at circuses.” People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is similarly concerned.

In the letter, they pointed out an incident that occurred Feb. 6 in Columbia, S.C., when an elephant in Ringling Bros.’ “Zing, Zang, Zoom” show took a wrong turn and knocked down the arena’s prop door. (”Zing, Zang, Zoom” is the show opening in Atlanta today.)

From the Columbia State newspaper:

About 100 spectators on the floor watching the pre-show saw the elephant break through the door toward them and rumble around the performance area, just a few feet away. Most people scurried away quickly, while others thought it was part of the show and stayed put.

No one was hurt in the incident, and the female elephant was quickly enticed back to where she was supposed to be, Drake said.

PETA had recently placed a statue to protest circus elephants in Woodruff Park, too.

Should elephants perform in circuses?

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This question comes up every time the circus comes to town. (There are three circuses in Atlanta this month. Two of them, Ringling and UniverSoul, have elephants and other exotic animals. Big Apple Circus does not.) The debate isn’t limited to elephants, but they’re the apex of it, perhaps because they are so smart, so social and so unusually magnificent. An elephant in the room, literally, is an 8,000 pound signal that you’re experiencing something unique.

“Zing, Zang, Zoom” includes 11 Asian elephants. When I talked with ringmaster Alex Ramon, a relative circus newbie, he said his up-close look at their lives showed him that they know they’re in show business, and they’re used to being pampered: “In order for them to perform this many shows, they can’t be sick, there can’t be malnutrition. I was shocked how well they were taken care of. Ringling Bros. has the money to take care of their animals. … If it’s your personal feeling that animals shouldn’t be performing, that’s your feeling, but that has nothing to do with the care. The care for the elephants is top of the line.”

The circus thrilled me as a kid. I loved the elephants, and the trapeze artists, the horses and the cotton candy. For a 4-year-old, that day held no shortage of spectacle. When I remember it now, I remember joy.

I have clearer memories of Wanda and Winky, the elephants at the Detroit Zoo. White painted elephant tracks on the asphalt led to the exhibit. Their huge habitat was in clear view of visitors, and they were the highlight of many visits over many years.

My most recent elephant experience was in 2008, when I spent several hours in and around the elephant habitat at Zoo Atlanta, detailing how they baby-proofed for a calf they expected to be born in 2009.

Here’s how those stories end:

The Detroit Zoo moved its elephants to a refuge in California in 2005, and has no plans to replace them. It was a proactive decision,  and they offer a  thoughtful, detailed explanation of why they will no longer keep elephants. It comes down to this: even with  modern husbandry techniques that doesn’t involve chains or hooks, and plenty of research into a new habitat, they don’t feel they can provide what Asian elephants need to be healthy and happy. Wanda still lives in California. Winky was euthanized in 2008 at age 56.

Dottie, the pregnant African elephant at Zoo Atlanta, died suddenly in 2008 during a bout of acute pneumonia. She was 26, and in the third trimester of her pregnancy. Elephants Tara and Kelly remain at the zoo.

I’ve never before tallied up the elephants I’ve spent hours and days with, but even as I’m typing this, their fates weigh on me. I understand that it’s amazing to see such larger-than-life creatures in your city, in the heart of such spectacle. I just don’t think I can find joy in it anymore.

What do you think? Should elephants be a part of the circus? Should Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed or other leaders weigh in on elephant appearances in the city? Why or why not?

For instant updates, follow @insideaccess on Twitter.

87 comments Add your comment

sane jane

February 12th, 2010
11:28 am

I won’t make assumptions about their care and feeding, but every time I see an elephant in captivity go crazy and start stomping its handlers, I’m usually rooting for the elephant.

Anybody who thinks elephants in the circus is great fun should spend a part of their life in a cage and be forced to perform for others’ amusement.

sane jane

February 12th, 2010
11:30 am

what an obnoxious and racist thing to say, Unimpressed.

Not to mention completely needless, unwarranted and irrelevant to this story.

I’m embarrassed to be on the same side of this issue with you.

OpinionatedLurker

February 12th, 2010
11:32 am

First off I’m no fan of PETA, but I think the days of using captive elephants for the circus are long past their expiration date. It’s not the 1800’s anymore, and while technology and science have given us the tools to determine what an elephants diet should consist of and how to properly care for them, you can’t replicate their native habitat enough while parading them around from city-to-city. Even the ones at Animal Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort just stand there and sway, which many vets believe is a sign of boredom. On top of that, they just LOOK unhappy. I think we have enough forms of entertainment these days that chaining elephants to anchors and whipping them into positions that they would not naturally do is too far out-of-date.

sane jane

February 12th, 2010
11:38 am

Well said, OL. I’m not a PETA person either, but this just seems unnecessarily cruel.

I don’t think we’re anthropomorphizing them, either – captive elephants truly do look sad.

Every sentient being knows when it’s free and when it’s captive. Patriots should always be on the side of freedom.

Snow

February 12th, 2010
11:48 am

“Anybody who thinks elephants in the circus is great fun should spend a part of their life in a cage and be forced to perform for others’ amusement.”

I do it five days a week. It’s called a cubicle and I perform tricks for my manager.

sane jane

February 12th, 2010
12:05 pm

You and me both, Snow. One more thing we both have in common with elephants in captivity: working for peanuts.

about time

February 12th, 2010
12:15 pm

PETA is not a dirty word. The organization is done much to improve the lives of animals. I’m a big fan of the organization. Back to the Elephants. Elephants do not belong in the circus. Imagine your child being taken from you at a very young age and hauled city to city to stand infront of screaming crowds. it’s sick.

lmno

February 12th, 2010
12:34 pm

Of course they sshouldn’t be in a circus. Dolphins and whales shouldn’t be in tanks at amusement parks.

The only time its acceptible to house wild animals is when their survival depends on it.

Its one thing if the animal’s natural habitat can be immitated. Its another to lock a bear in a small cage for slack jawed yokels to pay a nickel to see.

Rectal Bleeding

February 12th, 2010
12:36 pm

I have the internet if I want to see an elephant, or whale shark, or any large mammal. I know a lot of people that are animal fanatics, but have no problem going to the circus, zoo or aquarium. The larger animals should not be confined for human entertainment. It’s cruel and unhealthy for that animals.

Seriously, what person thinks this is a good idea to keep large mammals captive?

B-MAN

February 12th, 2010
12:51 pm

I suppose that I can safely say I see both sides of the coin. I love the circus, I always have since childhood. I love seeing the human acts as well as the animal performers. I do not in any way condone the unethical treatment of an animal…or human for that matter. That said…I believe that there are two sides to every story. PETA generally, and I am judging them by what I see and read… thrives on sensationalism. I believe in their core values, but their tactics at times make them no better than the organizations and individuals that they target. Performing animals have been a staple of the circus since the 1800’s and perhaps even before then. I see no problem with them continuing to perform along with dogs, goats, tigers, lions or any other animal for that matter…as long as they are treated well and taken care of. I would much rather see them in a circus than to be hunted down and slaughtered for tusks, or what have you. Let me reiterate, there are two sides to every coin Ringling has been accused of ill treatment, and PETA’s tactics leave a lot to be desired. Before people jump on any bandwagon…do your research and check all of the facts. It seems these days that people are just so quick to jump up on a soapbox. I call your attention to the recent lawsuit brought against Ringling Bros, that was found in favor of Ringling…not to say that abuse has not happened, but the plaintiff was clearly paid by animal activist groups and after all of the hoo ha, could not produce enough evidence from any stand point to convict Ringling.

Josh

February 12th, 2010
12:52 pm

There’s not a lot of places in the wild for elephants these days. The circus is another potential environment that allows them to exist with humans. Few of us get a free ride in life, so the fact that they have to perform isn’t in itself a bad thing.

A circus that treats the animals total well being and not just as a product to sell are fine with me. But they need to be very closely regulated and watched.

IjusLuv'em

February 12th, 2010
1:05 pm

I have to say I never gave it much thought until reading this article and everyone’s comments… but I do look forward to seeing the elephants at the circus!

Part of that desire is because I really do LOVE elephants… I can stand and watch them all day at the zoo…and my pulse quickens at the sight of their tricks at the circus… and I’m sorry, seeing them on the Internet isn’t quite the same… they are amazing animals.

After reading the comments, I can certainly understand the points about holding such a large animal captive and carting it around from city to city (I’m sure that wears on the people that have a choice in the matter), and also understand the points about not being able to recreate their natural habitat… but, as it was pointed out… doesn’t EVERY “animal” live in some form of captivity that isn’t a “natural” habitat…

I guess my point is, aren’t there bigger (no pun intended) issues for the Mayor to focus on that impact the lives of humans…leave this battle to the people that attend the circus…just my opinion.

IjusLuv'em

February 12th, 2010
1:10 pm

Great points B-Man & Josh!

lxd

February 12th, 2010
1:26 pm

Animals are NOT here for our entertainment. It’s arrogant of humans to believe otherwise. Zoos (present day) are at least trying to make habitats a little more hospitable for their animals, but circuses are simply barbaric. Circque du Soleil (and no, not Cavallia) would be the only circus this human would consider going to.
And yes, I am a vegetarian and don’t wear leather products. My hypocrisy is real, though, like most people I take medicines and I’m sure I buy products that have been tested on animals. But I try to at least inform people of the brutality of humans who use animals primarily for our entertainment (ex, bullfighting, circuses). It’s the best I can do for now.

Elephant Lover

February 12th, 2010
1:30 pm

The circus has always made me incredibly uncomfortable. I remember being nervous and frightened when I was younger and went with my family. Now that I’m older, I understand a little bit more what makes me feel so uncomfortable– the atmosphere, the lighting (or lack thereof), and the way those animals live.

I absolutely love seeing animals, and I think that people getting to interact with wild and exotic animals is important to educational and conservation efforts.

But zoos that do not do their best to imitate the animals’ natural habitats aren’t widely accepted anymore– we don’t want to see gorillas and tigers in iron cages barely large enough for them to turn around. So why is it acceptable to see them that way in the circus?

Old Monk

February 12th, 2010
1:41 pm

The problem may not be how they are cared for at the circus,its more about how the babies are separated from their mothers and tortured under training. Elephants and many other animals are intelligent and the Mother literally cries when this happens. the baby can be heard pining for its Mother for months.
Further, they are social animals that live in a herd. They can never be happy without all their companions. Circus owners greed has reduced them to the lowest level of decency as this is done not for food, but for pure wealth and nothing else.

Jeanne

February 12th, 2010
2:17 pm

Ringling Brothers Circus has a documented history of animal cruelty towards animals. Go to Google, put in Ringling Brothers Circus and USDA violations. The have paid thousands of dollars in fines. There are numerous videos available of “trainers” beating elephants , some up to 30 minutes while they scream in agony in their leg chains. Great family fun? Think twice. Educate yourself, make the right choices afterwards.

Vagabondking

February 12th, 2010
2:54 pm

Would you want to see a Tasmanian Tiger in the circus? The circus goes to many towns that don’t have zoos. You can’t capture the grandeur of a elephant in a picture, or on the internet. A elephant would bite it’s controller like a dog would, but they aren’t built that way.

Bev

February 12th, 2010
2:56 pm

Elephants are too intelligent and emotional for the lifestyle that comes along with being in the circus! I mean, come on, do you really believe they enjoy being overworked, and traveling in trucks down the interstate? I do not!

Lynnie

February 12th, 2010
3:13 pm

It is cruel to keep an animal in captivity, away from it’s natural environment, contact w/members of their own species. I have NEVER visited to Atlanta Aquarium, have no plans to visit ever…to do so would be endorsing this type unnatural bondage.

Eric Vogel

February 12th, 2010
5:30 pm

Watch what this undercover PETA person finds out.
http://www.ringlingbeatsanimals.com

I did talk to an animal handler for the elephants and she claims all animals are treated humanly and all the animals love performing. She said she would not be there if they were mis-treated and they retire to a sanctuary when they are done performing. She is either lieing or RIngling has the wool pulled over her eyes.

The video is not too graphic. Humane elephant handlers shouldn’t be using picks to move them or tap or smack them if they do something wrong. And watch the un-easyness when they are pushed together tightly.

Eye's wide open

February 12th, 2010
7:48 pm

This is Ringling Bros official statement when asked about the care their Elephants receive:
“Animals at Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® are healthy and well cared for by a team of full-time veterinarians and an animal care staff that works to ensure that the animals have an enriching and safe environment. Protesters make false and distorted allegations about Ringling Bros.”
No one has said that Ringling Bros doesn’t feed their elephants, they have to if they want them to be able to perform in all those shows.
What most of us want to know is why you are beating the hell out of your elephants if they are like family to you?
I would like Ringling to explain these photos of baby elephants tied up with ropes with a bullhook shoved up against their bodies and what about the Hot Shot that they are using on a baby.
Human Equivalent to a circus elephants life is putting a human infant on death row.

animallover

February 12th, 2010
11:53 pm

Thank you for bringing attention to this subject. I saw my first and only RIngling Bros circus when I was 21. I cried the entire time and immediately went back to my college apartment and wrote a letter to Ringling Bros. I not only expressed my disappointment about the inclusion of elephants in their silly act, but also the tigers, and dogs. The dogs ran around in circle in their cages like they were mentally ill (though Ringling claimed they were just so excited that’s why they continuously ran in circles). Tigers were also in cages and being forced to obey with the command of a whipping motion. It’s very pathetic.

I tell everybody my feelings about the circus when they tell me they are taking their kids and the reaction I typically receive is “but my kids like it”. I hate to burst parents’ bubbles, but the world doesn’t revolve around your kid. Go play ball with them outside or plant a garden with them and do something constructive. Please stop supporting the circus. The humans benefit (get money) from animal mistreatment, and I can’t believe the human race continues to allow this to happen.

CitizenMC

February 13th, 2010
1:18 am

Animals are on this earth for the benefit of mankind. As long as the animals are cared for properly and not mistreated, then no free society should enact laws that restrict man’s inherent right to dominate creation for his enjoyment and benefit. PETA is an extremeist organization that advocates for animal rights contrary to common sense, human history, and man’s obvious preeminence over every aspect of the animal kingdom.

Eye's wide open

February 13th, 2010
7:15 am

Citizen MC, you remind me of a child who covers their eyes and says,”you can’t see me.” Just because you cover “Your Eyes” and refuse to look doesn’t mean this abuse doesn’t happen, the rest of us can see through this illusion that Ringling has created Because you don’t like Peta doesn’t mean that the evidence of Ringling beating and torturing these elephants is untrue. Apparently you haven’t read about or seen the pictures that Sammy Haddock who use to be a Ringling elephant trainer has revealed to the Public, if you had you would know how stupid your comments sound.
Elephant’s have been scientifically proven to be “human” in terms of intelligence, emotional family and friendship bonding, nurturing of one another, along with age progression, and expected life span.
So the Human equivalent to the life of a circus elephants is a Human infant growing up on death row in prison.
The most we can hope for when it comes to people like you is that you educate yourself before you open your mouth again.

animals make the circus

February 13th, 2010
7:52 am

It is not about having animals in circus or not but about taking care of them. Animals make the circus more fun and a hit so please don’t go overboard like everything else. Keep it simple. Have fun but take care of animals too.

Eye's wide open

February 13th, 2010
8:12 am

Elephants and tigers can never be domesticated, and it is clear that Ringling can only train these Elephants by beating them with a bullhook starting at the age of two, and they won’t stop this practice because they make big money having them in there shows. But Parents you can stop this abuse now, just don’t take your families to the circus. If Ringling is the Greatest show on earth, they should be able to put on a good show without animals. “Animals make the Circus” if you will look at this website http://www.ringlingbeatsanimals.com you will see what goes on under the big top when the audience isn’t there.

Jeanne

February 13th, 2010
8:19 am

To the posters who still defend elephants in the circus – did you go to Google, type in Ringling Brothers Circus and USDA violations? Thought not. How about you go do that now, and then post your comments.

The Nerd

February 13th, 2010
8:55 am

What are you guys thinking?! You know good and well that animals, including elephants are what makes circuses so great[in addition to a few other groups, including clowns]. And as for PETA, I’m a meat eater, and I’m damn proud of it!

Miriam

February 13th, 2010
5:05 pm

Elephants don’t belong in either zoos or circuses. Both venues have only confined captivity to offer. Elephants are used to living in matriarchal herds and walking miles per day to maintain their health. In circuses they are beaten and electrically shocked to get them to perform and to keep them under control. They are driven mad by this brutality and often go on rampages as a result which, in turn, creates tragedy for people as well as the elephants. Baby elephants are taken away from their mothers by Ringling and “broken” to reduce them to frightened little victims who will do anything they are ordered to do for fear they will be beaten. Anyone who patronizes Ringling’s circus is supporting this abuse. There is no getting around that fact. The people running this show should be criminally prosecuted for violating the Endangered Species Act. Unfortunately, the USDA has been bought off and our courts are full of cowardly judges.

Julie R

February 13th, 2010
5:56 pm

If anyone actually believes that Ringling treats the animals well go to circuses.com and look at the photos and the video of Ringling training the elephants. The baby elephant photos were taken by a former Ringling employee who became disgusted with the way the animals are treated. Does anyone really believe an 8,000 pound elephant would want to stand on it’s head? The elephants are taken from their mothers as tiny babies and then chained and beaten and shocked into submission. Training tools are chains, ropes, bullhooks, and electric shock devices. Just look at the baby elephants expressions in the photos, they look like they want to scream “why are you doing this to me?” Intelligent and beautiful animals are forced to suffer torturous lives so people can enjoy a few hours of entertainment. It is disgusting.

Sarita

February 13th, 2010
6:35 pm

Its a shame that human arrogance has reached new heights of torture and pain especially at Ringling Bros. Ringling Bros known for its torture and pain inflicted to animals, may keep denying but everybody now knows the reality behind the scenes especially after the training video was viewed by many on the internet. Noone can now deny what happens to baby elephants while training.
I pray that every mother sees this video and makes sure that she doesnot take her kids to such a show where God’s creations live and die a life of torture, pain, fear and solitude. May love and peace prevail in every human heart!!!

Eye's wide open

February 13th, 2010
7:35 pm

Parents you must know that by taking your children to the circus you are perpetuating the abuse of these performing animals. Google “Circus Elephant Abuse” and you will be saddened at what you see. Please find another way to introduce your children to animals, zoos are more humane then the circus.
Ringling Statement:
Ringling has never been adjudged to have violated the Animal Welfare Act.
Reality:
Ringling attempts to confuse the issue with legal terminology. Each citation by the USDA is an indication that federal inspectors found that Ringling Bros. is failing to comply with the minimum requirements of the Animal Welfare Act.
In addition to being cited on inspection reports, Ringling has also been warned by the USDA for causing trauma and stress to two baby elephants who suffered painful rope lesions when they were prematurely pulled from their mothers and for improper euthanasia after a caged tiger was shot to death. Ringling also paid a $20,000 penalty to settle USDA charges of failing to provide veterinary care to a sick baby elephant named Kenny who died shortly after he was forced to perform.
Abuse is still abuse whether you are human or animal.

linda b

February 14th, 2010
4:20 am

I don’t believe in circuses or zoos and would never visit either of them. No animal should ever be taken captive and forcefully trained to “entertain” the public.This is not entertainment but down right cruelty.The public should be “aware” that to visit these circuses you are condoning and contributing to the hellish suffering that these majestic creatures have to endure.The governments should step in and ban these horrible places and free the animals. “Boycot Circuses”.

Scott

February 14th, 2010
7:36 am

circus ELEPHANTS are boring!

if the circus would feed californian peta emos to the lions… i would pay for front row tickets!!!

Jim

February 14th, 2010
8:59 am

Yes, yes, and yes – they DO belong in the circus.
And Scott, you are an idiot ~ and Linda needs to get a life.

Eye's wide open

February 14th, 2010
9:22 am

Baby Barack is the first Asian elephant born as a result of artificial insemination at a Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus facility has been pulled from the circus lineup after he became infected with a potentially deadly herpes virus.
The 1-year-old calf, Barack, is being treated for elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV), a disease that has killed several Asian elephants in zoos across the continent in the past three decades. He and his mother were taken off the traveling unit two weeks ago and sent to Ringling’s Center for Elephant Conservation in Polk City. The duo had made a appearance at the Orlando Florida last month during the circus’ “Greatest Show on Earth.” Ringling only has about 6 more years before they have to put this male elephant behind bars, so at one years old they already have this baby elephant out on the road, making money on him while they can.
Folks if Ringling is visiting your town, check your Public Library to see if they are participating in “Reading with Ringling” program, our Public Library’s are handing out Ringling coloring books and free tickets to the circus. Make sure you tell your Libraries about how Ringling treats their animals.

Scott your statement really shows your maturity level, don’t you have to be at least 13 to submit a comment.

Just Get Real!!!

February 15th, 2010
10:18 am

It is truly amazing at how little some people have to do and how POLITICALLY CORRECT they want to force the MAJORITY of us to be!!!

1st and foremost…Elephants have been performing for YEARS! and the treatment, health care, food, etc. they now receive from an organization like Ringling Bros. is TOP OF THE LINE!

2nd…That GOD no rational people take groups such as PETA serious (remember this is the same group that wnated UGA to adopt a “ROBOT” dog when Uga died last year!) Good Lord these people are idiots!!

3rd…Chickens, pigs, cows, etc. are NOT domestic pets!!! They serve as part of the FOOD CHAIN and it that bothers a few nuts at PETA then ask me how much sleep I am going to lose worrying about that!!!

Eye's wide open

February 15th, 2010
10:35 am

Abuse is still abuse whether it is a human or animal.
“Just Get Real” if you look at the pictures and videos of Ringling trainers beating and using a Hot Shot on their Elephants to train them, you will see how immature, stupid and out of touch your comments are.

B-MAN

February 15th, 2010
2:54 pm

WOW…tings is gettin KA RAY ZEE on this blog. Everyone on here has a point…I just find it so interesting at how much has changed in our world in the last 20 or so years…I started going to the circus when I was a small child, about 35 years ago…I don’t think that there was ever any grandstanding or sensationalism about circus animals then…if there was it was such a small group that not enough people found it worthwhile to draw any attention to them. The bottom line is, is there abuse documented within the circus to the animals? Yes there is. Has there been any significant ruling against Ringling that has prompted them to stop or be forced to stop using animals in the circus, nope. So…my suggestion is to allow people to make their own decisions in life…what they want to see, what they want to eat, how they want to entertain themselves. Lord knows that along with the government, special interest groups would love for you to behave the way that they feel you should behave and do what they tell you to do and so on and so on. There is nothing wrong with a child enjoying a circus, or being exposed to a colorful world of music, animals, and fun. It is certainly not like Ringling is holding public animal assaults in ring 2… Everyone has their opinions…and everyone is certainly entitled to feel the way that they feel. I would just prefer to let people make their own decisions on things…live and love life people.

Just Get Real!!!

February 15th, 2010
3:34 pm

“Eye’s wide open”…

Why don’t you just go ahead and post a copy of YOUR PETA membership card for all to see…!!!

If you feel so strong about elephant causes in general why don’t you take a trip to Africa and help with the REAL elephant abuse cause…POACHERS who are hunting the wild elephants for their ivory in countries that our federal government supports through “humanitarian aid”. If we don’t we get accused of not supporting the “poor” third world nations while all the time having the monies and supplies we send over there stolen by the leaders of these countries that support the illegal elephant hunting!!! There you go, here’s a real cause to go do something about!!!

Now leave Ringling Bros. alone and let the folks who buy tickets to their SOLD OUT performances enjoy a bit of Americana!!!

Ria van Rosmalen

February 15th, 2010
5:33 pm

NO, NO, Elephants don’t belong in a circus. They belong in nature, they have the right to be FREE. Not for entertament!!!!!! I have work by Friends of The Elephants (netherlands) I’ve seen the Elephants in the wild in Kenia and by Daphne Sheldrick, I’ll never go to a circus, Never!

Eye's wide open

February 15th, 2010
6:20 pm

This information is for People who care about the humane treatment of elephants: Sammy Haddock worked with circus elephants over the course of 30 years. He spent the last several years of his career as a trainer at Ringling’s Center for Elephant Conservation. Haddock died last month at 53, leaving behind a damning indictment of his former employer. It appears that he was fulfilling a promise made to his dying wife (“Before she died, she told me, ‘Sammy, I know you’ll do the right thing’”) to expose the inherent cruelty in training circus elephants. He approached PETA (an unlikely alliance; Haddock ate meat and hunted doves) this past spring, and in August signed a 15-page notarized declaration that included many of his own pictures from the workplace. He explained how elephants were trained to perform popular tricks by employing multiple men, ropes, and, of course, bullhooks. Referring to one picture, Haddock said, “The baby elephant is slammed to the ground. See its mouth is wide open? It’s screaming bloody murder. It doesn’t have its mouth open for a carrot.” From the declaration: “When pulling 18-24-month-old babies, the mother is chained against the wall by all four legs. Usually there’s 6 or 7 staff that go in to pull the baby rodeo style. …Some mothers scream more than others while watching their babies being roped. …Once they’re pulled from their mothers, they’ve tasted their last bit of freedom and the relationship with their mother ends.” They will spend 23 hours of their day restrained. Once inside the training tent, loud music is played to “drown out the baby’s screaming” and to adapt them to the circus atmosphere. Ringling’s training regimen included “…brute force, electricity, and a savage disposition. Raising a baby elephant at Ringling is like raising a kid in jail.”

'Just Get Real!!!' is a moron

February 15th, 2010
11:31 pm

‘Just Get Real!!!’ – “Elephants have been performing for years”. Wow, well I guess that makes everything alright then. People like you live in your own little bubble, thinking if you deny something enough then it’s reality. You really should sample the 21st Century – it’s a very enlightened time.

Just because something has been done “for years” doesn’t make it right. Slavery was done “for years”. Women didn’t have equal rights…”for years”. “For years” child labor was legal in this country. And, more on topic, “for years” zoo animals were kept in concrete cages too; thankfully more enlightened folks realized a few decades ago that natural habitats are a better alternative. Thank God that people have finally started to address the problem with circuses.

Having said that, and as long as I’m posting, I understand the importance of conservation efforts of zoos, but the elephant habitat at Zoo Atlanta is WAY too small. It really saddens me to see those huge, magnificant creatures in such a confined space. ZA needs to focus less on constantly adding new species and creating better habitats for the animals already under its care.

Jamie Gumbrecht

February 16th, 2010
12:47 am

Hey folks, I really appreciate the variety of perspectives showing up here. I’m just jumping in to remind you that in order to keep to remind everybody that in order to keep the discussion going, we need to show respect for each other. Please don’t resort to name-calling and insults, or nobody will learn anything. Let’s keep the conversation moving forward. Thank you!

Animals

February 16th, 2010
7:17 am

Yes we want the animals at the circus. It’s a great format for the children – the adults have Cirque’soleil for amusement.

As long as they are humanely treated – I’m OK with it.

If you really care about animals in captivity, stop supporting your zoos, stop eating meat, do not buy any leather products [check your wallet] and if you fall sick do not seek any medical treatment…and forget about cosmetics :) Of course the WORST offenders are Pet Owners !!! please release all your creatures to the wild.

Thank-you.

Animals

February 16th, 2010
7:30 am

Some more points…

If you have replaced your leather with plastic, shame on you for polluting the oceans with your non-degradable waste, clogging up the fish chain and choking the birds.

Yes, you need to also stop all dairy products including chocolate and cakes…forget butter too and go munch on some margarine.

As for eating plants, do you know they are more evolved than us? Check out the facts – look at their gene counts, look at how they manipulate us [animals] into dependencies…and survival.

ok i’ll get off my non-tallowated soap box now.

Eye's wide open

February 16th, 2010
8:23 am

In the past 10 years, 13 Ringling Elephants have died 6 had osteoarthritis, which is caused by the constant chaining on concrete floors, some died because of TB, 8 month old Ricardo was being trained to stand on a tub when he fell off breaking both back legs he had to be euthanized, others died of unknown causes according to Ringling.
Ringling considers these elephants death the cost of doing business, they will just breed some more to replace the ones who have died. After all their motto is, “The show must go on.”
Ringling had one year old baby Barack touring earlier this year, when he came down with a deadly virus, thankfully they pulled him from the tour. But in another year, if he survives, baby Barack will be separated from his Mother forever and the beatings will begin to train him to perform in the circus. By the time he is 8, he will be too big and dangerous to travel, so Ringling will put him behind bars until he dies, he will never be allowed outside again.
The Human equivalent to a Circus Elephants life is putting a human infant on death row in prison for the rest of their lives.
If it looks like abuse, sounds like abuse, then these Elephants are being abused. Parents you can stop this abuse now, just don’t take your families to a circus that can’t put on a show without Elephants and other animals.

Animals

February 16th, 2010
9:47 am

Eyes wide open – please do not clog this board with the same points. Your posts are bordering on spam and your accusations are severe – an AJC reporter should be on this including the DOJ, USDA and the FBI. Namaste.

FindYourCompassioncom

February 16th, 2010
9:08 pm

Animals DO NOT belong in the circus. They are WILD animals and it is unnatural for them to be trained to do tricks. WILD animals belong in the wild or in a zoo or sanctuary if “we” have decimated populations that bad. Does anyone remember Tyke? Tyke was an elephant who “freaked out” or maybe he got his revenge? at a circus in Hawaii and he trampled and killed his trainer and run rampant on the roads until he was brought down by tons of police and about 50 bullets. When the circus comes to town — don’t go.

Eye's wide open

February 17th, 2010
6:51 am

Abuse is a topic that some people don’t want to hear about because it pops their illusions, and if they have a conscientious they can’t pretend anymore they didn’t know about this abuse, they realize that their childhood illusions that the Circus Elephants are loved and treated like family members was all a Big Lie.
If anyone still has doubts about whether Circus Elephants are abused, you should read the 15 page statement made by Sammy Haddock, who worked as an elephant trainer with Ringling Bros Circus. So seldom are people brave enough to expose a wealthy entertainment giant like Feld Entertainment (who owns Ringling). But Sammy Haddock was so ashamed of the part he played in abusing these elephants especially the babies that his guilty conscientious wouldn’t allow him to remain silent.
So there is no confusion about who’s side I am on I am on the side of these Circus Elephants and any animal that is not humanely treated.

Pam Holt

February 17th, 2010
6:10 pm

I am so relieved to see there are slightly more compassionate people than those that think it’s OK to treat animals like this and, scarier still, you are teaching your children that and we can look forward to more heartlessness from them as they enter adulthood.

Thank you for this article that helps give a voice to the voiceless… to speak for the majestic creatures that stay chained most of the time, travel all over creation in cramped quarters in extreme conditions with minimal breaks, and are trained with fear by using bullhooks in sensitive areas like the underarm to hide the wounds. Animal Circuses SUCK!

Shelley

February 19th, 2010
12:42 pm

I will never, ever go to a circus with any kind of animal. The thought of those poor animals being trucked around all over the country and exercised in parking lots is sickening.

Eye's wide open

February 19th, 2010
4:51 pm

Ringling Bros Circus says they put on the “Greatest Show on Earth” so there is no reason why they cannot entertain people with people instead of Elephants and the other animals that they have to abuse and beat to train them to perform. This solution would remedy this dilemma for the Elephants and the Circus could go on to perform using People Entertainment.

heidi

February 21st, 2010
1:52 am

Elephants do not belong in a circus. The country that Iive in (Sweden) has put a ban on using wild animals in circuses, along with a few other countries. This ban should be applied worldwide as wild animals do not belong in circuses. It’s appaling that they should be confined to small spaces, abusing and bad treatment in order to amuse a public.

I cannot understand how people can find plesure in looking at abused animals performing tricks!

and yes – we have circuses here to:)

Patty Shenker

February 21st, 2010
11:37 am

No wild animals should be allowed in circuses. Al of them, whether they are elephants, big cats or primates, are beaten, brutally & repeatedly as well as other horrific ways of controlling wild animals, like depriving them of food & water. It is morally wrong! Just because it’s been this way for years is not a valid reason. The truth is these circuses are cruel, dangerous to people & animals and totally unnecessary. Too bad that these pathetic circuses don’t heave enough human talent to be successful- like the AMAZING CIRQUE DU SOLEIL!!!

Tasha Piontek

February 21st, 2010
12:07 pm

These elephants are not being cared for properly. Even the handlers whom care deeply for them do not have the correct behavioral training, and resources to keep these beautiful creatures happy, healthy beings. As our culture evolves perhaps we will see that it is not ok impose such harsh lifestyle and depression on any creature just for our own amusement. This is dangerous and cruel buisness. If you awaken to the reality of it- you can not support it. It would belike supporting puppy mills, dancing bears and dog fighting. Wake up people. What once we thought was ok- we now know is not. Remember that people were once widely enslaved as well. Not cool. Not humane. NOT entertaining. Take a closer look.

Rhea Preston

February 21st, 2010
2:17 pm

Absolutely NOT!!! Animals should not be used solely as a source of entertainment!!!… as much as I love watching my animals and yes, they do entertain me… I love them and I snuggle with them, they sleep with me in my bed and I would never ever abuse them!!! The circus animals are used and abused in a horrible manner!!! They’re regarded only as a means to making money! I pray for the day that it becomes illegal to use animals in any circus!!! Peace.

PS… Animals… I am 100% vegan… I don’t own a wallet nor do I wear any make-up. My clothing and shoes are made of hemp. Yes… I do have pets… but they are domesticated animals… not wild!!! If you want “a great format for your children” sit down and read a book on wild animals with them. Get real… the circus abuses it’s animals and the abuse isn’t going to just suddenly end!!! “As long as their humanely treated”… the problem is, is that they are NOT!!! It’s like telling your 8 year old child to play nicey nice with her/his worst enemy… it’s just not going to happen!!! Please educate yourself a bit more on the happenings behind closed doors within the circus before you post a comment. Thank you.

Tasha Piontek

February 21st, 2010
9:32 pm

It is a tricky question- those whom posed the question about zoos. I have yet to see a zoo that is capable of duplicating the environment an ele needs to survive mentally and socially. The Tennesee Sanctuary is a beautiful option for them. I understand to fall in love with a creature you need to first experience it. But isn’t there a better way than through torture and imprisonment in circuses and some zoos? Many are well meaning- few are capable. We need to unite on what cruelty is- it should mean the same thing for all creatures. Their basic needs should be supplied. Wouldn’t that be the very least you would expect for yourself?

“Elephants are highly social and intelligent! According to reputable elephant experts, elephants have three basic needs: vast acreage, compatible herd members and live vegetation as food.”
-http://freepregolja.com

I applaud the efforts of some zoos with their enrichment services. Most are not enough however for elephants.

Let me put it to you like this.. there are people whom still say “It is just a dog.” a part of them may even love it- but they still think of it as an alien creature amongst them. Then there are those of us whom have let in those other creatures to another part of ourselves. “Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.” Anatole France said. He was right. And there are those of us that have gone that step further.

It is my hope that those whom have not yet had their souls awakened to that other part- will find it someday- hopefully sooner than later so that more suffering will be ended. This goes not only for the elephants but for many species including humans. Maybe I am rambling- but there is truth in it. Until your freedom, family and basic needs have been stripped away- or until you have perhaps placed yourself in one’s shoes, hooves, big padded ele feet– do NOT think that you know what is right. Unless you’d enjoy being caged, beaten, deprived of medical care and your basic social, physical and emotional needs.. do not support any circus.

Investigate further before just going along with the status quo. That too may be changing. Let’s hope! I already see here a lot of people whom ‘get it’ and really care.

Patricia Panitz

February 22nd, 2010
1:37 pm

To those who think that Ringling “won” the recent lawsuit against it – in reality the judge ruled that the animal defenders DID NOT HAVE LEGAL STANDING (meaning that you have to be directly effected) to pursue this suit. He didn’t rule on the merits of the case. His ruling was rather disingenuous because animals obviously can’t sue themselves. Animal defenders are in the process of trying to establish standing so they can sue on behalf of animals. I hope this case is appealed.

Eye's wide open

February 22nd, 2010
6:36 pm

World renowned elephant expert Dr. Joyce Poole, who was the first expert witness of the trial and has studied elephants her entire life, watching Ringling’s handlers was a little like watching Nazi’s conduct the Holocaust. “This is America,” she pleaded with the federal judge. “These animals should not be chained 20 hours a day, beaten with bull hooks and forced to perform these unnatural acts. They are extremely intelligent creatures, they mourn their dead, they use tools, they help their friends up when they are ill, they are extremely social.” At one point, while watching Feld Entertainment video of an Asian elephant…… Dr. Poole choked up.”

I read the entire trial transcripts, it is impossible to see and read all that evidence and not come to the same conclusion I did….these elephants have been abused everyday of their very long lives.

My conscience won’t allow me to remain silent about the horrible abuse of these Intelligent Mammals.

Till all circuses quit using animals in their shows OR my last breath, I’ll never stop speaking up on behalf of Elephants and all circus animals.

krisb

February 22nd, 2010
8:31 pm

Circuses can go on and on- with PEOPLE as the performers. Lions, Tigers, Bears and Elephants are not performers. They are sentient beings deprived of their comfort, health, and freedom by a greedy business encouraged to continue through the financial support of an uncaring populace-the circus audience. Don’t buy tickets. Discourage everyone you know from attending. In all likelihood the only way to stop this terrible animal abuse is to stop paying for it!

Eden Springs

February 23rd, 2010
1:03 pm

You know what’s really odd? All these animals never used to break loose and stampede until PeTA began showing up regularly every time the Circus came to town. Too bad they don’t care one whit about human life; just hope some innocent person doesn’t get trampled to death because of their stupid shenanigans.

Anyone who think PeTA is all about protecting animals needs to visit http://www.petakillsanimals [dot]com and see how your donation dollars are really used. Nice work, Ingrid!

Eye's wide open

February 23rd, 2010
2:40 pm

When I hear comments like the one I just read, all I can do is hang my head, people like ES have no conscience and are a lost cause.
Eden Springs, Ringling has a circus elephant named Karen go pet her the next time you attend one of their shows.

Kitty C

February 23rd, 2010
6:57 pm

I think animals being forced to perform confusing, unnatural, painful, demeaning tricks in the cirucus is one of the saddest commentaries on human cruelty and greed and arrogance. Do you really enjoy seeing one of nature’s most magnificent animals, the elephant, stand on her head, do sit-ups, balance all 8000 lbs of her on a tiny stool, prance around in a circle one way and then do an about face and prance around the other direction. Do you really enjoy seeing a 1 year old baby being paraded around and forced to do stupid tricks, too. Do you ever stop to wonder how it is that these animals, elephants, lions, tigers, chimpanzee, zebras, etc. get from city to city day after day? They perform most of the year. Ringling produced documents that elephants, and the other animals, were in boxcars for up to 100 hours without being let out. Where do they urinate and defecate? Right where they stand. They are chained because, of course, if they get even the smalled opportunity they try to escape. Does this sound like the life you would want for them? Look a little bit more closely at the reality of the life of “performing circus animals” and you can’t possibly condone it. Humans can choose to be a traveling performer, if they get tired of it, they can just quit. Can the elephants “just quit” if they get tired of it? Elephant brains have a larger area where emotions are developed than humans do – think about that. A famous and compassionate former elephant trainer once said “If humans wanted to be better, they would be more like elephants”.

Diane A

February 23rd, 2010
8:17 pm

petakillsanimals.com
peta is one of the worse killers of animals in this country. anyone who thinks they are anything about animal welfare needs to go back to school.

Peter

February 23rd, 2010
10:10 pm

Just say “Hell No” to circus elephants !!!

PS: PETA is Great.

Laura Johnson

February 24th, 2010
8:33 am

Folks who think PETA is wonderful don’t know the truth. PETA kills animals…dogs and cats that are adoptable. Check it out. PETA also pays informants to work for animal owners, circuses, stores, etc. and “set up” situations which would be considered abusive. This is not news. And, PETA folks feel justified in their deceptive actions because they don’t believe humans should have any contact with animals, even pets. With regard to the elephants, these elephants have a greater chance of survival as a species on this planet by being included in a circus. They have a purpose. Otherwise, in the wild they are being hunted and killed ONLY for their tusks. Humans are wiping out wildlife because of poverty and the need to survive. Elephants in the circus and in the Ringling Brothers elephant farms are ALIVE and well. We should be thankful that there are circuses. Without them, elephants may disappear from the planet. Look to the good…living elephants.

Genny

February 24th, 2010
3:32 pm

Your poll is fixed. You don’t want “YES” answers, do you?
I voted YES, and got a message “You Had Already Voted For This Poll. Poll ID #11″ – and that’s just BS – I hadn’t voted before, this is the first time I read your article. “You Can’t Handle The Truth” can you?

Jamie Gumbrecht

February 24th, 2010
3:37 pm

Genny, the poll is not rigged to boost certain answers. It is set up so that there can be only one vote per IP address. Is it possible that someone has already voted while using the computer that you’re on? Regardless, I’ve submitted a ticket to our tech people to see if something is wrong with the polls on our publishing system. I’ll let you know if I hear anything back.

Genny

February 24th, 2010
3:44 pm

Nobody uses my computer except me – I’m IT for my IP address.

There is a “problem” with the poll. I’m not the only person getting the message that we already voted. You should scrap the whole poll and start over, so that all of the YES votes get counted – you will learn more about what people really think that way.

Jamie posted:
“Genny, the poll is not rigged to boost certain answers. It is set up so that there can be only one vote per IP address. Is it possible that someone has already voted while using the computer that you’re on? Regardless, I’ve submitted a ticket to our tech people to see if something is wrong with the polls on our publishing system. I’ll let you know if I hear anything back.”

Eye's wide open

February 24th, 2010
4:29 pm

For anyone who thinks Ringling’s elephants are well:
3-16, 2007: A Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation captive wildlife inspection report noted that
Ringling’s breeding compound in Polk City, which housed 30 elephants, was still under a tuberculosis watch.
9-5, 2006: Two elephants at Ringling’s Polk City, Florida, breeding facility tested positive for TB, the human strain of tuberculosis that can pass from elephant to human, and three female elephants were pulled out of the traveling units because they had been exposed to at least one of the infected elephants.
9- 22, 2005: A Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission captive wildlife inspection report noted that four out of eight elephants (Siam, India, Tilly, and Prince) housed at Ringling’s Williston facility tested positive for tuberculosis in 2001.
9-7, 2005: The USDA cited Ringling for failure to dispose of expired and undated tuberculosis drugs. The inspector also indicated that Ringling transported an elephant named Siam from the Williston facility to the breeding compound. Ringling’s tuberculosis-infected elephants are kept at Williston. Siam tested positive for tuberculosis in 1999.
10- 9, 2004: A 44-year-old Asian elephant named Roma was euthanized because of osteoarthritis.* A necropsy revealed that Roma had tuberculosis.

Jamie Gumbrecht

February 24th, 2010
4:34 pm

Genny, here’s the explanation I got from our tech people:

1. Some IP addresses are actually shared. Anyone who uses multiple
computers in a household with DSL or Cable Modem are sharing a single IP
address. This is often the case in offices, hotels, and anyplace people
might be sharing WiFi, like a coffeehouse.

2. We generally use a cookie to also track individual poll
responses from the same IP address. However, if cookies are blocked,
this would cause an issue for the poll tool.

Lisa

February 24th, 2010
8:15 pm

Jane – live in a cage and perform for other’s amusement – most of us do this every day – it’s called a 9-5 job (I’m only partially joking…) should we go “stomp” our bosses? Do we really have a choice? (gotta pay the bills….) It’s been in court before – and thrown out – Ringling Bros. takes excellent care of their animals. They have to be happy and healthy to appear in public and perform.

Jamie Gumbrecht

February 24th, 2010
8:37 pm

I’ve noticed several commenters bring up the recent lawsuit involving animal care and Feld Entertainment, the owner of Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus. The Los Angeles Times pulled together a lot of coverage of the trial as it progressed, and it ended in late December, when a federal judge ruled a former Ringling employee and the Animal Protection Institute did not have legal standing to sue the circus. You can see more here: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/unleashed/2009/12/judge-rules-in-favor-of-ringling-bros-in-case-alleging-abuse-of-circus-elephants.html

Eye's wide open

February 25th, 2010
6:58 am

So Lisa after reading your comparisons you think it is OK for your Boss to use something that looks like Fireplace poker to hit, stab and hook you until you bleed, leaving open wounds. Your boss cares about you so much they will cover up your wounds and send you out to greet the public after all you are there to do your job. I do hope you are still smiling at this point. Oh! I forgot to mention when you work day is over your legs are chained to a concrete floor and you get to stay there until it is time to go back to work. Wow, you are so lucky to be living the great life.
For those who want to know the truth, Ringling’s old and young elephants all suffer from a slow but deadly foot disease, caused by being chained on concrete floors or in a train car in their own waste every day of their lives. Ringling’s own medical records show this to be true. Folks these records and other information are on the Internet, you can read them for yourself, don’t take Lisa’s word for it.

Sue

February 25th, 2010
11:14 am

This poll is fixed!! I have never been to this site and I voted Yes, I like seeing Elepphants at the circus and it wouldn’t take my vote. I askd a friend to vote to see what happens and the same thing, it would not take her vote. Then she voted No I don’t like ….and it recorded her vote. I guess you don’t really want to know how most people feel. I hope I don’t hear on the results of your ‘poll’ on the news.

Eye's wide open

February 25th, 2010
11:29 am

Don’t take my words either, look for yourself, you be the judge. This link has official Court transcripts and videos available for the public to view: http://www.bornfreeusa.org/a1a6a_courtdocuments.php When Judge Sullivan dismissed the case on the grounds it lacked legal standing, that was the end of the trial, but all the evidence that was submitted to the Court clearly shows they beat and torture these Elephants with a Bullhook, on the videos You can see it with Your own eyes, You can read Ringling’s own medical records, these elephants suffer with constant foot disease from being chained for hours on end, they are treated with pain medication so that they can continue to perform in all those Shows, and one Elephant had a injury in her anus when a Ringling handler hooked her with that sharp bullhook. I know extreme abuse when I see it. All I ask is, You look at it for Yourself.

Jamie Gumbrecht

February 25th, 2010
12:18 pm

Hi Sue, just to be clear: this poll, like all others on AJC blogs, is not scientific. It’s a tool for people to register their opinions, not a tool we’d use to report a story. It won’t appear on the news.

As I explained earlier to Genny, the poll is not rigged to support a certain side. It is set up, though, to accept only one vote per IP address.

Here’s the explanation I received when I submitted a ticket to our tech folks, in case there was a problem with it:

1. Some IP addresses are actually shared. Anyone who uses multiple
computers in a household with DSL or Cable Modem are sharing a single IP
address. This is often the case in offices, hotels, and anyplace people
might be sharing WiFi, like a coffeehouse.

2. We generally use a cookie to also track individual poll
responses from the same IP address. However, if cookies are blocked,
this would cause an issue for the poll tool.

This could be affecting your ability to vote, but it’s possible they’re affecting many people. That’s also why we like to keep the comments open — we can have a conversation about it here.

Thanks!

Sue

February 25th, 2010
7:12 pm

Thanks for your explanation. My IP is not shared and I have never had this happen in other polls I have voted in. Most people don’t post comments, this was an exception, so you are not getting a good representation on this subject if the poll is not taking the YES votes.

Eye's wide open

February 26th, 2010
6:46 am

Sue, please don’t hide behind a YES vote on the Poll. Some of us would like to hear you explain your selfish reasons for wanting Circus animals beaten and inhumanely treated just to entertain you.

Rhonda Valentine

February 27th, 2010
12:27 pm

i agree with sane jane….pray everynight for more people like us

Lilly

March 3rd, 2010
11:59 am

I just watched the video posted by Eye’s Wide Shut. It left me feeling guilty, ashamed and outraged that I contributed to the abuse of these animals by taking my kids to the circus. My four year old loves the elephants, but I am positive he would pass on seeing them if he knew they were being beaten to perform for him. I won’t debate the issue or judge others decisions. But, I will never take my children to another circus that includes animals. We will stick to the library, musuems, and animal free amusement parks for our entertainment!

Eye's wide open

March 3rd, 2010
6:02 pm

Lilly I felt the same way as you after I realized the part I had played in the abuse of these animals when I bought tickets to the Circus. If one more Parent knows about how these animals are abused their entire lives to make them perform for just a few minutes, I sincerely believe they would never take their children to another Circus who uses animals in the Shows. If you listen or read what the Circus has to say about how they treat their animals, it is very easy to believe them when they make comments like this: “Our animals are healthy and well cared for by a team of full-time veterinarians and a staff that works to ensure that the animals have an enriching and safe environment. We treat the elephants like they are members of Our Family.”
They just leave out the part that they use a bullhook to beat the hell out of these family members so often it can’t be called humane treatment. For decades the Circus has fooled Parents into believing that their shows are wholesome family entertainment, and it still could be if they would just STOP using animals in their shows.

MRICE

March 9th, 2010
3:55 pm

I was unaware of what elephants endured in the “circus life” and zoos, captivity in many forms. I did the research myself, to fact check for myself; not for an organization, not for a job etc. I wanted to know if the information I was exposed to was true. I am shocked that circuses are even legal. I am deeply saddened at what elephants (and many other animals) endure in captivity. What their lives and deaths are in circuses (and zoos too) are no semblance of what they would be naturally nor what they need nor would want. Anyone who disagrees should do their research as I have. Read the medical reports, the gross negligence of the USDA, the death and birth rates, watch the videos, read and see for yourself. All the rationalizations are brazen lies to justify cruelty for money.

Eye's wide open

March 13th, 2010
7:01 am

All of Ringling’s animals have a horrible life. Lima one of their Zebra’s that escaped in Atlanta a few weeks ago and was running down the highway had to be euthanize because of hoof injuries he received. Ringling says we are working with the USDA to see that this never happens again, true is this is the 4th time in 3 years that their Zebra’s have escaped. Sad, sad.

Circus without animals

September 16th, 2010
10:18 am

I refuse to go to any circus which uses animals in the acts. It’s not right what they do to these animals to make them perform night after night for our insatiable appetite for entertainment! It’s just pure GREED! Leave the animals alone! This is in no way educational as they all like to claim. What is so educational about cramming exotic animals into tiny cages or crates and dragging them all over the country and chaining them up all day until performance time?