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Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way.

Ringling Slammed by Largest Protest in New York History

Written by Michelle Kretzer | March 21, 2013

Because of the throngs of people who had gathered outside to protest, it was hard to spot those who were trickling into Brooklyn’s Barclays Center on Ringling Bros. circus’s opening night. More than 200 animal advocates came together to make sure that Ringling’s reception was chillier than a New York winter.

While half the group circled the block, hoisting signs and chanting, the other half flanked the crosswalks and handed leaflets and educational coloring books to parents and children.

If any of the attendees weren’t aware of how Ringling abuses animals, they certainly were after they saw the behind-the-scenes photos of trainers slamming baby elephants to the ground, gouging them with steel-tipped bullhooks, and shocking them with electric prods. And if that didn’t do the trick, the screening of PETA’s video exposé narrated by Alec Baldwin, which showed trainers beating and tormenting elephants, moments before a performance likely did.

Many of the advocates plan to return to the Barclays Center every night that the circus is in town to make sure that everyone in the Big Apple gets the message about cruelty under the big top.

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  • Jeanine Sammis says:

    I’ve always detested the circus. I want to become involved next time there is a protest of any circus involving animals in the New York area. How can I get information to participate. Everyone needs to be a part of a greater cause and we need to end animal cruelty now!!

  • Dianne Snider says:

    It is sad to see these abuses still happening. In this case, I do agree with PETA’s protests, however, overall, I am not extremist in my views about using animals to enhance peoples’ lives. A circus is not one of those situations. Can’t people be happy with Cir Soleil?

  • jesse reynolds says:

    I am so so gratefull for organizations like yours!!!! I wish I could help in some way,I haven t any money but I am willing to do anything ,I mean ANYTHING to help!!! I am talened in retaining info,gaining entry to the rescue of an animal(s) that is in dire need when all other avenues have ,,been exauhsted(this i am the victim of, my animal getting beaten to death because lawlawlaw enforcemeant ignored

  • Tracy Egan says:

    What time is everyone meeting to protest against the circus animals? My daughter’s NYC private school always hassles me when I keep her home from circus field trips (and zoos), but to do the right thing for the abused animals is paramount!

  • Joanne says:

    Thanks to all who speak out and show up…….thank you PETA for all you do.

  • puglvnfool says:

    I’m so proud of all of them! I wish I didnt live so far away or I would have been there too

  • Linda says:

    Stop this practice of abuse to any animal in the circus. They belong in the wild where they belong in there natural habit . Lets shot them down.

  • Colleen Holle says:

    We do not need animals for entertainment and any Circus doing so should be banned.

  • Denise Scott says:

    I was so glad to read this report I have signed so many petitions against Ringling Bros awful treatment of elephants in their circus, I hope they get closed down, there is no need to use animals in circuses it’s so unnatural for animals to be used in this way.

  • John Olexa says:

    Good work!!

  • Sanja says:

    A big thank you to everybody who showed up! Ringling is PLAIN EVIL and should be shut down for good. Praying for all those precious, innocent animals… Thank you…

  • katherine newton says:

    I am sooooo happy that PETA speaks out, when , I , for one person, cannot be there in NYC to protest. I detest circuses !! thanks for your compassion and boldness !! Bravo to all that participated!

  • Mukesh Tanwar says:

    I thought they must have learnt their lesson after the huge fine was slapped on them but didn’t know they are so shameless and insensitive. But then they sustain because of people like us who enjoy seeing others esp. other species in pain…

  • Mukesh Tanwar says:

    I thought they must have learnt their lesson after the huge fine was slapped on them but didn’t know they are so shameless and insensitive. But then they sustain because of people like us who enjoy seeing others esp. other species in pain…

  • claudia says:

    Well done!! I’m proud of you kids! Anyone who likes this see animals doing unnatural stupid tricks should revaluation they’re lives.There is something seriously amiss. Go out in nature, watch the animals in they’re natural habitat, there is nothing more beautiful. Go to your local animal rescue and volunteer to walk the dogs. Time much better spend. Much more satisfying. Its free!!!

  • Rina Deych, RN says:

    Kudos to Cynthia King and her amazing students for the brilliant “Tu Tu Cruel” theme! A huge thank you to Cynthia and all the other groups and individuals who organized and/or participated in this historic event! You ALL rock!

  • Audrey Morales says:

    This is just the best news ever. For years I’ve wondered when is Peta going to bring it big to NYC . I would love to be part of these protest. I truly believe they should also target the radio stations whom keep giving commercials announcing ringling such as hot 97 (97.1) and la mega (97.9). They need to understand what they are advertising as well as condoning. Thanks Peta!!! It would be awesome if ringling went out of business.

  • Lynn Hall says:

    This is great!! Thankyou all for what your doing

  • roxanne says:

    I was there and there were more people but the camera wasn’t wide enough to capture all of us. It was am amazing turnout. Ringling Brothers beats animals

  • Helle Debbie says:

    We have become wiser people and therefore we can no longer accept animals being used and mistreated for the sake of money. It is time to open our eyes and show how the inner growth of wisdom can be transformed into a nicer place on the outside. We are now more open to equality among animals and peoples all over the world. More and more love for animals and respect will show, pls show an example in this case. We are better people now and know more. We will not feel right by closing our eyes to this bad happening.

  • Mari Hill says:

    I love it, I wish there could be that kind of response in every State that Ringling or any other circus who have elephants try to put on a show. It should be stopped, and I blame the higher authorities who are paid to prevent this type of cruel treatment to show and zoo animals. We don’t need animals for our entertainment.

  • Nan Newall says:

    I sincerely thank the demonstrators for raising public awareness regarding animal torture. People have the power to stop brutal acts of crime against animals, by simply refusing to support circuses and other centres of animal torture. Please, do not see the animals as a source of entertainment. They are thinking, feeling beings, like us. These elephants and other animals once had a home and a family. Now, they are slaves in the human world. We find human slavery disguisting. Why can’t we feel the same about animal slavery? Do the decent thing and stop supporting circuses!!!