I'm all about giving my children as many life experiences as I can. I remember my parents and grandmas taking my sister and I to the circus as a child. I mostly recall the bigness of it. The popcorn and light up wands that I MADE them buy for me; not understanding I would loose interest in the $20 piece of plastic the next day.
We took my boy to the circus for his third birthday and my parents even splurged on front row tickets. It is ridiculous how much front row tickets plus service charges to the circus costs for a family of six. My son loved it and watched the video daily for months following.
Besides the cost, I have been reading for years about the cruelty of animals. According to Ringling Beats Animals, "In the Ringling Bros. Circus, elephants are beaten, hit, poked, prodded, and jabbed with sharp hooks, sometimes until bloody. Tigers are viciously struck with sticks so that they'll perform difficult and confusing tricks."
"Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus is known for its long history of abusing animals. In 1929, John Ringling ordered the execution of a majestic bull elephant named Black Diamond after the elephant killed a woman who had been in the crowd as he was paraded through a Texas city. Twenty men took aim and pumped some 170 bullets into Black Diamond's body, then chopped off his bullet-ridden head and mounted it for display in Houston, Texas. Ringling's cruel treatment of animals continues today.
Elephants in Ringling's possession are chained inside filthy, poorly ventilated boxcars for an average of more than 26 straight hours—and often 60 to 70 hours at a time—when the circus travels. Even former Ringling employees have reported that elephants are routinely abused and violently beaten with bullhooks (an elephant-training tool that resembles a fireplace poker), in order to force them to perform tricks."
This video by PETA is disturbing and hard to watch, but it sealed the deal that our family is no longer supporting Ringling Brothers Circus.
The littles are not missing out as they have seen other "big" productions including Disney on Ice and I know Broadway plays are in our near future. We will continue our annual outing to see The Midnight Circus , a Chicago-based family circus that uses no animals (except their pet dog). I would rather support a small, family business than a big company that hurts animals.
We can be the voice for these animals by sharing this information.
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