PETA Closes the Book on Ringling’s Elephant Abuse

For Immediate Release:
September 23, 2020

David Perle 202-483-7382

Yulee, Fla. – Below, please find a statement from PETA Foundation Director of Captive Animal Law Enforcement Rachel Mathews in response to White Oak Conservation’s plan to remove elephants from the former elephant-breeding facility of Ringling Bros. circus in Florida and allow them to live in herds in a vast natural habitat:

At the elephant-breeding facility of Ringling Bros. circus, mother elephants gave birth in chains, trainers jabbed babies with bullhooks (weapons that resemble fireplace pokers), and tuberculosis, foot problems, and arthritis ran rampant. After decades of opposing such cruelty, PETA is delighted to close the book on Ringling’s abuse of the remaining elephants from its long-closed traveling shows. The animals will soon roam thousands of natural acres at White Oak Conservation and never suffer in chains or be beaten with bullhooks again.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. More information about Ringling’s former facility is available here.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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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