Casey Affleck Wants You to Help Stop Animal Abuse in Circuses

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus may have announced that its animal-abusing shows will finish after 146 years, but many other exhibitors continue to exploit big cats—and for the animals in their boxcars, the end is not yet in sight. Now, Oscar winner Casey Affleck is shining a spotlight on the cruel and archaic use of animals in circuses.

Those who have seen the critically acclaimed and award-winning film Manchester by the Sea will have witnessed Affleck’s devastating performance as a man whose spirit was broken by profound emotional tragedy. This utter despondency is shared by animals in circuses, who endure physical as well as psychological torment.

Traveling circuses use billboards, commercials, and other promotions to advertise a good time for the whole family—but their shows are no fun for the tigers, lions, elephants, and other animals who are forced to perform meaningless tricks under the threat of violence with sticks, bullhooks, whips, and electric prods. Subjected to beatings, isolation, and neglect, these animals will continue to languish and suffer at the hands of circuses for the sake of profit so long as the public continues to pay admission fees.

Compassionate people everywhere are using their voices—and their wallets—to show circus promoters that animal abuse is not entertainment. Stand up for big cats, elephants, and all animals used in circuses by pledging to support only those that are animal-free and that use talented, willing human performers to thrill crowds. There are so many exciting and innovative productions that dazzle audiences without animal acts, and public demand for such spectacles is growing.

Remember: Every purchase of a ticket for an animal circus funds cruelty. To help spare animals abuse and neglect for the sake of human entertainment, pledge never to go to a show that uses animals.

Get PETA Updates

Stay up to date on the latest vegan trends and get breaking animal rights news delivered straight to your inbox!

By submitting this form, you’re acknowledging that you have read and agree to our privacy policy and agree to receive e-mails from us.

 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