Ringling Risking More Violations?

Published by Jennifer O'Connor.
River Beach | cc by 2.0

On the heels of the record $270,000 penalty paid by Feld Entertainment—the parent company of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus—PETA is renewing our call for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to deny the company’s application to import eight tigers and a leopard in violation of the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA).

The ESA prohibits importing endangered species except for “scientific purposes” or to benefit the survival of the species. It’s beyond a stretch for the circus to claim that it’s helping tigers by jamming them into tiny cages and whipping them into submission. Many of the violations that Ringling paid a penalty to settle involved big cats, including a tiger who suffered a laceration after her tail was slammed in a cage door and a lion who died of heat exhaustion in a sweltering boxcar while crossing the Mojave Desert.

The FWS has a duty to protect animals from harm and should not cave in to the demands of an influential corporation that just agreed to pay a huge fine for alleged violations of federal law.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind