As a student at American University, I was horrified when I found out that American University’s alumni association is holding “an evening of fun at the Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Circus.”
Circuses like Ringling Bros. are cruel. Animals are subjected to inhumane training methods and harsh conditions.
An article from Mother Jones said it best: “Ringling elephants spend most of their long lives either in chains or on trains, under constant threat of the bullhook, or ankus—the menacing tool used to control elephants. They are lame from balancing their 8,000-pound frames on tiny tubs and from being confined in cramped spaces, sometimes for days at a time. They are afflicted with tuberculosis and herpes, potentially deadly diseases rare in the wild and linked to captivity.”
Ringling Bros even paid $270,000 for violations of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) dating back to 2007! CNN says it’s a “record penalty for alleged animal rights violations.” Why is a company with such a poor record teaming up with a school as wonderful as American University?
Animal exploitation is not entertainment. The best way to protect, appreciate, and respect elephants is not to force them to perform tricks.
American University prides itself on being a progressive institution and a leader in social justice and sustainable practices. Please ask American University to immediately and permanently cease all promotions for Ringling Bros. Circus.
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