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Sarah Silverman Says Circuses Suck

Written by PETA | July 22, 2011

Sarah Silverman doesn’t think there’s anything funny about hurting animals. The comedian and provocateur has fired off a letter on behalf of PETA to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack asking that four ailing elephants traveling with the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus be seized. These four girls are still on the road and being forced to perform despite the fact that PETA drew the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s attention to this arthritis and lameness more than nine months ago.

 

Performing circus tricks is a painful struggle for these animals … Yet Ringling’s elephant handlers—who have zero vet experience—continually stab the animals with sharp metal rods called bullhooks in order to keep them performing despite their ailments.

Sarah points out that veterinarians have documented incontrovertible evidence showing that Nicole, Karen, Juliette and Sara are being forced to perform grueling tricks despite suffering from lameness. Nicole and Karen also suffer from painful arthritis—the number one reason that captive elephants are euthanized.

Add your voice to Sarah’s by asking Secretary Vilsack to order these four hurting elephants off the road.

Written by Jennifer O’Connor

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  • Roxanne Field says:

    It’s disgusting and barbaric that this is allowed in this country. This uncivilized behavior will soon end. No one should support circuses which use animals. A new doll line should be coming out next year called Rescue Girlz – they’re animal rescuers. A portion of the proceeds will go to animal charities.

  • linda oliver says:

    STOP!! BRUTALIZING THESE PRECIOUS BEINGS THAT WERE PUT ON EARTH TO ENJOY LIFE IF HUMANS WOULD GET THEIR PRIOTIES IN ORDER; THEY WOULD STOP AND LEARN FROM ANIMALS HOW TO CO-EXIST INSTEAD OR PUTTING MONEY BEFORE COMPASSION, SENSITIVITY, GENUINE LOVING. ANYONE WHO DOUBTS, GO SEE “WATER FOR ELEPHANTS”

  • Shirantha says:

    Please enact strict laws than ban all animals performing in circuses or in any entertainment activities. Animals have a life and needs of their own and are not born to provide entertainment for humans. This should also extend in banning animals from being used for experiments and clothing and leather industry. Check PETA for unbelievable torture many furry mammals including millions of dogs and cats go through being skinned ALIVE for the cause luxury and fashion.

  • Norma says:

    What is it that attracts people to go and see abused circus animals? Are they so dumb as to thinking anyone of those creatures is happy.They are manhandled, whipped, stabbed continually with those elephant rods the so called trainers use, they are chained up shoved into very small cages and forced to ‘entertain’ us once or twice a day ‘forever’..they never get a sick day or a holiday or privacy and most of all they never ever get freedom. Shame on us America…every animal no matter how large or small has feelings…it feels pain, fear, hunger,and yes love amongst their own species…we do not own the creatures that live on this planet with us…they are here for us to co’habit with, not exploit and torture and kill them. God help us Humans when will we learn.

  • Mark says:

    Why can’t the world just open its eyes and put a stop to all animal cruelty? I am embarassed to be associated withy anyone that hurts animals

  • TRISHA FARKAS says:

    close down all live animal shows!!!!

  • rosaura martinez says:

    PLIS PETA, TURN YOUR SIGHT TO MEXICO, HERE THE SHOWS WITH ANIMALS KEEP BEING SOMETHING NATURAL, NOBADY CARES THE PAIN,LONELINESS,AND FEAR OF THEM, AS SIMPLE AS TAKEN CHILDREN TO THE BULLFIGHTS.IF YOU WERE HERE, ME AS OTHER PEOPLE, WOULD BE WITH YOU IN THESE FIGHT AGAINST TEH SUFFERING OF ANIMALS

  • Sherry says:

    The laws need to be changed!!!!!!! So many people including myself are asking how to do it I’m sure with all the support from PETA we could stop this torture..I’m only one person tho…please PETA let us know why this law hasn’t be changed and the steps we can take to make the change!!!

  • Geoff M. Stead says:

    We humans are supposed to be at the top of the pyramid.  We are unique in many ways, some good, but others horrific.  No other animal treats other animals the way that humans do.  Even most predators kill their prey in as humane a way as  possible.  Kathy Compagon, you’re right…we still don’t get it.

    Geoff Stead

  • Bina Israni says:

    I am just stumped at how helpless people can be against these giant abusive organizations. Can we not get the law on our side and get these poor elephants out of there?

  • Theresa McKinley says:

    Barbaric and cruel – animal based circuses should be banned! We are supposed to be the ‘superior species’ with the ability to reason. Can we not see how cruel and stupid these circuses are?

  • Nan Fariss says:

    I have demonstrated at every circus in town for years with some like-minded friends but they keep coming….Especially bad are the Shriners who have ignored our letters and demonstrations at their circus, which isn’t even theirs, they lease the animals from some sleezy outside companies, like Hawthorn Corporation and many more. In the UK they are getting a law out to ban wild animals from circuses. We need to ‘get with it’ and do the same which is LONG OVERDUE.

  • emily manning says:

    Elephants have IQ in the human range. That alone is enough to cut them a break. You would not in this day & age go to a foreign country, capture another human diff. from you and treat them like this.. elephants & primates are like sub human classes. they are so close to us and yet we ignore this and abuse them anyway. Please remove the 4 elephants to a refuge & treat their ailments. thank you

  • Glenville J Owen says:

    If Sarah Silverman is the very funny and determined actress that had me in fits of giggles when she appeared in several Monk episodes a while back, then she has now sky rocketed herself to being my vege hero for urging the release of those unfortunate circus animals from their cruel masters.

  • Missy says:

    Thank you Sarah! I have a 3 year old and I have another on the way! I will never take them to a Circus that has animals. If it’s only humans I will. They choose that they want to perform.

  • DAVID M HAGLER says:

    PLEASE SEE THAT THESE ANIMALS THAT HAVE SUFFERED SO MUCH FOR TOO MANY YEARS ARE TAKEN FROM THEIR TORMENTER AND PLACED IN A REFUGE.

  • Maike Doty says:

    That is exactly why we don’t go to the circus!!

  • scott says:

    You know the suppliers of show animals are always in violation of legal practice-so would be great if the higher powers could hold them up to make hard for any or the smaller shows to get animals to begin with.

  • Meriel Williams says:

    I have sent a letter regarding these ailing elephants to Secretry Vilsack, and I also requested an update and status report. Somehow, I also feel that the Shriner’s should also be held accountable. They also hire these same elephants for their parades. They need to be convinced that there are other more humane options.

  • Nora Coyle says:

    Kudos to Sarah Silverman for speaking out. It’s way past time to stop this barbaric cruelty for “entertainment” sake. What are we teaching our children. Everyone needs to learn about their plight.

  • Derlin G.Clair says:

    Even though Sarah can be quite acerbic at times,she does have a good valid point this time about many circuses(maybe not all)but unfortunately most being somewhat inconsiderate,and cruel to their performing bears.Something reall ydoes need to be done for the sake of these poor four elephants,Nicole,Karen,juliette,and Sara.

  • Carol says:

    This is horrible what is going on with these innocent animals that have a right to live elsewhere this has to come to an end TODAY and there is no doubt about it.

  • Cheryl G says:

    Not knowing the cruelty these poor innocent animals have had to endure, I confess I had attended circuses years and years ago. I am sitting here sick to my stomach that this goes on & they have to go through this. I have sent a letter to the Secy of Agriculture. This must stop & stop now! How can anyone treat an animal with anything but love? To top it off, elephants have a special place in my heart & I am immensely grieved by the action of these inhumane people.

  • Michael Henderson says:

    Unsure who Arthur’s comment is directed at. Miss Silverman is doing a wonderful thing by bringing attention to an issue that should have been addressed and confronted decades ago. She is absolutely correct about the inhumane treatment circus animals receive. As a kid visiting the traveling circus I vividly recall seeing one of the circus elephants chained up in the parking lot for the public’s “viewing pleasure”, and thinking how wrong that was. Kudos to Sarah for taking this to the top. Let’s free these prisoners of the animal kingdom and return them to humane habitats.

  • Lou Ann Giunta says:

    What can we as compassionate citizens do to stop this cruelty to circus animals, especially the amazing and stately elephant? This is one of America’s shameful events. It must stop.

  • trish says:

    You go Sarah! (I’m from NH also) very proud you are standing up against Circus. I don’t understand why with all the power of Peta and all the organizations fighting the circus, the circus still go on? Who are the people that still go and still think its ok. I’m hoping in my lifetime they are done using animals in thier show. Thanks again Sarah

  • Connie Bagnoli says:

    Please put a end to this torture, I feel so sorry for them suffering like!!!! poor animals !!

  • Parker Jordan says:

    Isn’t infortunate as “civilised” as we think we are that someone, at leasst, does have the desire to establish a sanctuary known as “The Elephant Sanctuary” located in Tennessee on a 2,400 acre site operating only from donations. Animals, caged animals, chained…simply restricted to live their lives for our entertainment. Stop the insanity!!!

  • Barbara Sweet says:

    I’m so upset about the torture of elephants, especially in the Barnum & Bailey Circus, any circus, for that matter. It makes my heart sick with pain for these wonderful, amazingly intelligent, compassionate and wise animals. I once demonstrated for PETA in front of the B & B Circus in Brooklyn. Isn’t there anything we can do legally to put a stop to his inhumane, heartless behavior?

  • wendy scott says:

    what’s sad is that people like arthur think people like Sarah silverman do this for attention! the abuse and exploitation forced upon these helpless animals for the almighty dollar and the entertainment factor is inhumane. fortunately animal acts are disappearing because the public (especially children) do not think of this as entertaining but sickening. why do we tolerate the euthanizing of 4 million animals in shelters-again for the greed of puppy millers , pet stores, back yard breeders and the ignorant who don’t spay and neuter their animals. commit to end the atrocities- don’t leave it for the next generation to clean up!!

  • Sandi Myer says:

    It’s pathetic to hear and see that animals are STILL abused in the circus and treated with such painful devices. PLEASE STOP NOW. I will never take my family to a circus if there is any HINT of animal abuse. What a disgrace to this country!!

  • margaret meldeau says:

    Sarah, thank you for helping these poor animals…i have seen the many videos of taking the babies from their mothers and torturing them to get them to perform and now to hear about the suffering these four girls have to go through….i hope evryone will suppport you in this endeavor…thank heavens for people such as yourself..to speak for the animals.

  • Arthur says:

    You have to be kidding me, SOME people will do anything for attention… sad…

  • Arne Cohan says:

    Is there any way to start the cause to get the use of animals in a circus to be illegal? It breaks my heart.I’ve never taken my children to a circus with animals in it and I’m trying to instill the same values in my granddson. These animals have their dignity taken away and live an unnatural life. It sholdn’t happen. I wish there was a way to make it stop.

  • Amy says:

    Never been a Sarah Silverman fan but thanks to her for saying this.

  • VICKY says:

    I HAVE NEVER BEEN TO A CIRCUS, THANK GOODNESS. PLASE END THE TORTURE THESE ANIMALS ENDURE THIER ENTIRE LIVES. ALWAYS CAGED, EXCEPT WHEN BEEING BEATEN INTO PERFORMING FOR “THE AUIENCE” VERY OFTEN NOT RECIEVING MUCH NEEDED MEDICAL ATTENTION, AND SLOWLY DIEING IN UNBELIEVABLE PAIN W/NO CHANCE OF EUTHANIZAON.

  • marisa says:

    I love sarah silverman for lots of reasons, now I can also add this to my list. She is my new hero!

  • Krista Butler says:

    Who decided that we have the power and authority to take such beautiful animals out of their habitat and place them in a harmful, inhumane, and controlled environment? Your actions are beyond selfish, heartless, and appalling. I hope one day you acknowledge the horrific suffering you have placed on these animals. Myself and others are begging you to STOP…Nothing like setting a good example of allowing animal cruelty to take place. PLEASE STOP!!!

  • David Kaliner says:

    Please remove performing animals from circuses and other so-called “entertainment” areas. It is unnatural to remove such animals from their normal environments. Thank you.

  • Jan says:

    I think I saw one circus 40 years ago and cried for days after. And this awful show keeps going and going. We need to educate kids in elementary school that elephants are meant to be wild and not perform unnatural tricks for our “entertainment”. If you start early these kids will make their own decisions. I started all my children out when I first started reading books to them and now they are all against any kind of animal abuse, from circus to zoos to domestic animals. They try and teach their friends, sometimes it works sometimes not but at least my kids and now my granddaughter know what is unacceptable. Please retire these four girls NOW and don’t use any more elephants or any animals for that matter. Let the humans do the tricks.

  • deanna johnson says:

    Please do not allow animals to suffer for entertainment.

  • Kathy Compagno says:

    We still don’t get it do we?

  • Gaurav says:

    Please end the cruelty!

  • dore elisabeth says:

    stop aux animaux dans les cirques

  • rebecca finn says:

    Please please please stop these barbaric acts, its animal cruely to the max

  • Nancy Goswami says:

    Wild animals are not meant to perform for our entertainment!!! My family has never been to an animal circus and never will!!! These circuses need to be shut down immediately…..and stop the suffering of these unfortunate voiceless creatures!!!

  • Irka Seng says:

    Having these intelligent sentient animals suffer for people’s amusement says a lot about people’s sense of humanity. While I strongly stand behind the belief that all circuses should be animal-free, please do the right thing and take these 4 female elephants away from Ringling. I cannot even imagine how painful it must be if someone were to force me to do something physically demanding and against what my body was meant to do when I wasn’t feeling well. C’mon, it’ll be good karma. Do the right thing.

  • Melody says:

    No animal should be made to suffer for entertainment. It’s cruel. I have arthritis and know how painful it can be. Please let these animals enjoy retirement.

  • Jonesto says:

    Circus animals are abused for human entertainment

  • Diana says:

    they do suck!

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