Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit 1 Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend 3 (4 Shares)  
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites View Article Stats   7 comments

General News

Animal Rights Activists Confront Parents at Ringling Bros. Circus

By (about the author)     Permalink       (Page 1 of 5 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

Must Read 3   Supported 3   Valuable 2  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H4 2/24/11

Become a Fan
  (8 fans)

Families anticipating Ringling Bros. "Fully Charged" Circus Saturday afternoon at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia were greeted by a fully charged group of animal rights activists.

With shouts of "There's no excuse for animal abuse!" about two dozen protesters lined the sidewalks as cars packed with circus-goers slowly made their way toward the venue.

Protesters line sidewalk in front of Wells Fargo Center

Jason Treger runs the Animal Rights Group of Greater Philadelphia. He recently moved out of Philadelphia but drove 90 miles to make it to Saturday's protest.

A strict vegan, he explained, "Our main hope is that some of the people will think twice about coming to the circus in the future. I was just at a protest on the other side of the building and we were handing out DVD's with undercover footage at the circus." Many took the materials, he said, while others simply walked away.

There was little foot traffic at the Broad Street entrance and a lawsuit issued by Spectrum Arenas kept activists from engaging patrons in the parking lot of Wells Fargo. But, protesters on the sidewalk displayed signs reading "Warning: Animal Abuse Inside" and activist, Ed Coffin, walked up and down the line of cars with a bullhorn urging parents not to support Ringling's Circus.

Marianne Bessey, founder of Animal ACTivists of Philly, has been protesting Ringling Bros. for almost 10 years. "It's the treatment of the animals," said the Philadelphia lawyer. "If they stopped using animals I would probably be one of their biggest fans," noting that the animal acts make up a very small portion of the two-and-a-half hour show.

In an earlier interview with the Gloucester County Times, 24-year-old, Brian Crawford Scott, the third youngest master of ceremonies in Ringling's history, spoke about the excitement of working with the animals. "You never get over the novelty of watching an elephant walk by you. It's amazing," he exclaimed.

"I'd say that that's a very selfish thing," said Bessey. "If that's all you care about, being close to an elephant, no matter what cost to the elephant, then you need to get a heart transplant."

A mother and her young daughter drove by, the mother's hand shielding her own face while her daughter looked around quizzically from the backseat.

Reflecting on their reactions, Bessey said "You know one of our signs says 'shame on the parents,' because it really is the parents' fault. They think they're doing something fun for their children. But if children, who are very compassionate, knew the facts about the treatment of the animals, they would run screaming from the circus. They don't want animals to be abused for their entertainment. So, while the parents might be well-meaning they really need to examine their values here.

Kids get into the act at the Ringling protest

"There is definite documentation," she charged, "dozens of videos, evidence that came out in the court trial of the horrible treatment of these animals. The elephants are in the box cars for up to 100 hours traveling show to show. The baby elephants at Ringling's breeding center are separated from their mothers when they're still nursing. They're chained for 23 hours out of a day to break their spirits. They are beaten with bullhooks. All of this is factual information. It's not disputed by Ringling."

Bessey is referring to a lawsuit that animal welfare groups brought against Ringling Bros. Circus which was dismissed in 2009 due to lack of standing. She said that Kenneth Feld, CEO of Feld Entertainment which owns Ringling, "acknowledged on the witness stand that trainers did, indeed, hit the elephants with bullhooks, that it sometimes drew blood, stating it was a necessary correction to do the tricks that they do."

Next Page  1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5

 

http://bit.ly/birenpics

Cheryl Biren is a Philadelphia-based researcher, writer, editor and photographer with a focus on social justice. From 2007-2011, she served on the editorial board of Opednews.com.

Cheryl has also consulted for the Rob Kall Radio Show with (more...)
 

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Follow Me on Twitter

Contact Author Contact Editor View Authors' Articles

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Breaking Camp: Veterans Occupy National Archives Building

Nancy Pelosi Book Signing: Know Your Power, Just Don't Speak Truth to It

Animal Rights Activists Confront Parents at Ringling Bros. Circus

Meet the Protester Who 'May Have Received a Minor Injury' at the Hofstra Debate

Veterans Want YOU for Civil Resistance!

NJ Congressman: Bush Admin. Will 'Gulf of Tonkinize' Iran

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
6 people are discussing this page, with 7 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)

Feb. 24th is a special day for me and your post ad... by Suzana Megles on Thursday, Feb 24, 2011 at 4:39:23 PM
Sadly, until animals are considered more than just... by Bill Cain on Thursday, Feb 24, 2011 at 4:40:04 PM
for exposing the evil done to them in circuses, Ch... by BlessUsAll on Thursday, Feb 24, 2011 at 11:48:17 PM
And it illustrates my usual point: Animal rightste... by GLloyd Rowsey on Friday, Feb 25, 2011 at 6:02:39 AM
As a resident of Florida I live about a hundred mi... by Provoked on Friday, Feb 25, 2011 at 7:34:11 AM
Many people seem to believe that hitting the Giant... by GLloyd Rowsey on Friday, Feb 25, 2011 at 7:39:41 AM
thanks for the feedback everyone. i actually learn... by Cheryl Biren on Friday, Feb 25, 2011 at 6:33:22 PM