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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus

Thursday, October 14th, Kaitlynn, MawMaw and I met Tia, Mike, Annabelle and Alayna for dinner at Denny's before heading to the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Presents Barnum's FUNundrum. I was hoping to get there early enough for the preshow, but we didn't. Kaitlynn got a program (from Feld). Our seats were pretty high up (higher than last time). We had to buy a ticket last minute because we had someone else want to go with our group, so that's probably the only place where there was an extra ticket so we could all sit together. The show didn't keep Kaitlynn's interest at all. I'm not sure if it was because we were so high up or because Annabelle was with us. But she just wasn't interested in watching the show. I thought it was a good show. The animals didn't seem to be out as much like in previous shows we've seen, though.

Thank you Feld for the complimentary tickets!

1 comment:

  1. Dear Amy,
    I will direct my comments to you personally, although I would like to see you post it for other Mom’s to see too. From one compassionate Mom to another I hope you will hear me out. We started a family project to learn all we could about the lives of circus elephants after Ringling’s visit to our area and in our search we discovered there are two elephant sanctuaries in the United States, The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee and PAWS in California.
    Many of the elephants at these sanctuaries are former circus elephants several came from Ringling Bros Circus and this is where we first learned about what life is “really” like for circus elephants. The decades of mental and physical abuse these elephants experience at the hands of the circus industry left the whole family sick to their stomach and shocked that this kind of abuse could still be taking place in the 21st century and they call it wholesome family entertainment.
    In fairness to the circus we went to Ringling’s Center for Elephant Conservation website to read about the animal care they provide for their animals. It is easy to walk away convinced that they provide great care of their animals.
    Except during a federal trial held in 2009 irrefutable evidences was presented that proves beyond any doubts that these elephants are beaten with a bullhook regularly to make them perform in hundreds of shows a year. From these court documents, we learned these elephants stand in crowded boxcars in their own excrement for up to 60 hours at a time while the circus travels across the country all year. Then there was the testimony and videos of Ringling trainers beating the elephants with bullhooks and shocking them with electric prods. Ringling’s own Veterinarians’ reports show that almost all of their young and older elephants suffer with foot diseases caused from being chained constantly and wounds from being beaten with a bullhook. You can see read these official court documents too. The truth is in these documents.
    In 2009 a retired Ringling elephant trainer released dozens of photos he took while working at their Center for Elephant Conservation. They show Ringling trainers using a bullhooks to hit, jab and electric prod to shock baby elephants to make them perform circus tricks. Ringling made this statement about these photos of their baby elephants, they say, “our elephants are being trained with food rewards, patience and love.”
    Joyce Poole a world renowned elephant expert was a expert witness at the federal trial in 2009 her testimony is online for anyone to read. You can read her expert opinion about the unnatural behavior Ringling’s Bros elephants’ display in this video.
    It is impossible for children to see past the fun and excitement created by the circus, but as parents it is our responsibility to see that our children are not fooled into believing that it is OK to abuse animals to entertain them. Children recognize abuse when they see it, and that is why my children refuse to go to a circus that uses performing animals.
    Ellie's Mom