Ringling’s Cruelty to Animals Sparks Opening-Day Protest

PETA Supporters Will Cite Beatings, Lack of Veterinary Care in Call for Circus to Phase Out Elephant Acts Now—Not in 2018

For Immediate Release:
June 4, 2015

David Perle 202-483-7382

Colorado Springs, Colo. – Following Ringling Bros.’ announcement that the circus will phase out its elephant acts by 2018, a throng of PETA supporters, joined by members of local group Pikes Peak Animal Rights Team, will gather in downtown Colorado Springs on Thursday for a spirited protest ahead of Ringling’s opening night. Brandishing signs proclaiming, “End Elephant Abuse NOW,” the demonstrators will point out that the circus was recently caught denying veterinary care to elephants who were apparently left chained inside boxcars for up to four days at a time—one of the many reasons why PETA is calling on Ringling to phase out its elephant acts now and not wait until 2018.

Where:           The corner of East Pikes Peak Avenue and North Tejon Street, Colorado Springs

When:             Thursday, June 4, 12 p.m.

“Three years is too long for animals forced to perform unnatural tricks through fear, pain, and intimidation,” says PETA Foundation Deputy General Counsel Delcianna Winders. “PETA is calling on Ringling to give elephants the reprieve they deserve now—and calling on families to stay away from any circus that still forces animals to perform.”

A recent New York Times editorial joined PETA’s call for Ringling to retire the elephants now. PETA, whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment,” has released dozens of compelling photos taken by a former Ringling trainer at the circus’s training center that expose how baby elephants are stretched out, slammed to the ground, and gouged with bullhooks—weapons that resemble a fireplace poker with a sharp metal hook on one end.

For more information, please visit PETA’s website RinglingBeatsAnimals.com.

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