Posted on June 21, 2012 by Other Nations
Kathleen Stachowski Other Nations
Western Montana’s Bitterroot Valley in Ravalli County is known for its stunning mountain scenery and its oft-stunning conservatism. Deep-canyoned east-west drainages rising toward the Idaho divide serve as a gateway to the 1,340,587-acre Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness. The valley’s politics often serve as a gateway to extremism. Guns? Lordy. Militia? In the works. A hunters’ group, hoping to encourage more dead wolves (the only good kind), offered prize money for photos of wolves killed in districts where hunting quotas hadn’t been met. The county planning board (subdivisions and all that –yawn- stuff) hosted an expert on Agenda 21, a U.N. plan to steal our freedom and our property, destroy the Constitution, use environmentalism to create a one-world government, and relocate most Montanans to urban areas like Seattle. In a recent Bitterroot Memorial Day parade–Memorial Day, mind you–a pickup towed an outhouse labeled “Obama Presidential Library.” You get the picture.
And so it was, driven by curiosity, that a public seminar titled “The Human Cost of the Animal Rights Movement” caused me to give up half of a recent Saturday and head up the valley. Continue reading
Filed under: animal advocacy, animal cruelty, animal ethics, animal rights, animal welfare, circuses, diet, spay/neuter, veganism, vegetarianism, wolves | 12 Comments »
Posted on May 8, 2012 by Other Nations
Gene Bernofsky photo, World Wild Film Expedition.org
Kathleen Stachowski Other Nations
Much has been written about circus animal exploitation, and those who care to know, do know. We know about the trauma of capture and separation. The abusive training. The extreme confinement in trailers, cages, and chains–lives so impoverished that animals lose their minds. And the fruit of that suffering: brief minutes in the ring where defeated animals perform unnatural, coerced acts for cheering throngs. We know about the suffering when things go as planned, and the suffering when things go awry.
But this piece is about the other animal–the one who wields the whip and bullhook. The animal who clutches kids with one hand and circus tickets with the other. The animal who profits off the misery of “lesser” beings in the name of charity. In short, the animal who determines the fate of all others. Continue reading
Filed under: animal advocacy, animal cruelty, animal ethics, animal rights, circuses | 26 Comments »
Posted on May 3, 2012 by Seth
I happened to watch CNN this afternoon at the deli where I had lunch. The featured story focused on what age is too young for a child to be vegan.
Recently there has been a stir surrounding “Vegan is Love” by author Ruby Roth. To quote the Amazon summary,”Roth illustrates how our daily choices ripple out locally and globally, conveying what we can do to protect animals, the environment, and people across the world. Roth explores the many opportunities we have to make ethical decisions: refusing products tested on or made from animals; avoiding sea parks, circuses, animal races, and zoos; choosing to buy organic food; and more.”
Filed under: animal advocacy, animal cruelty, animal ethics, animal experimentation, animal welfare, circuses, climate change, diet, factory farms, veganism, vegetarianism | Tagged: animal advocacy, animal ethics, animal welfare, animals, CAFOS, childhood obesity, CNN, diet, factory farms, farmed animals, meat, nutrition, Ruby Roth, vegan, Vegan is Love, veganism, vegetarianism | 6 Comments »
Posted on December 9, 2011 by David
A strong message of against animal cruelty has been delivered to the public, especially those who exhibit animals for profit, with the assessment of civil penalties against the Ringling Brothers. On November 28, the owner of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, Field Entertainment, Inc., paid $270,000 in fines for violations of Animal Welfare Act pursuant to an agreement that have been reached with USDA.
The Animal Welfare Act requires that minimum standards of care be provided for animals exhibited to the public. PETA repeatedly urged the USDA to take action against Ringling Brothers for numerous violations of the Animal Welfare Act. In 2009, PETA led an undercover investigation to reveal “the saddest show on earth,” which included the exhibited animals being struck with bull hooks. In August of this year, an elephant ‘stumbled’ according to Ringling Brothers, but an eyewitness believed the elephant collapsed when the handlers were moving her. Continue reading
Filed under: animal cruelty, animal law, circuses | Tagged: animal abuse, animal cruelty, Animal exploitation, animal law, animal welfare act, circuses, Feld Entertainment, PETA, Ringling Brothers | 4 Comments »
Posted on July 12, 2011 by Other Nations
Four performances, four protests. Our numbers ranged from three at one show to as many as 10 at another. The Carson & Barnes circus arrived in Missoula, MT for shows on July 9th and 10th, and no show went without protest.
You might know C&B from the eye-witness account of one ex-employee. Or perhaps from the widely-circulated, much-condemned elephant training video (“Make ’em scream!”). The footage includes a sadistic training session, caged bears neurotically pacing and bobbing, and an elephant getting her hair burned off with a blow torch. Apparently this was filmed before the waxing craze. One can only surmise that their hair, which is supposed to grow on their bodies, somehow interferes with the performance. Perhaps it’s just too scratchy for the pretty circus lady who clambers up on Jumbo! The C&B Elephant Care page says hair is “often…removed with clippers; this helps to prevent parasites from growing on their skin.” Wild elephants, who don’t shave, wax, clip, or torch, wallow in mud and dirt to protect their skin. Continue reading
Filed under: animal advocacy, animal cruelty, animal ethics, animal rights, circuses | 5 Comments »
Posted on April 19, 2011 by Other Nations
Running away to join the circus! What a call to liberation–beckoning kids for generations. An escape to freedom from nagging parents, onerous chores, meaningless homework. Restless adults still hear that siren song—now merely an escape fantasy—and imagine leaving the past behind and starting over as someone new.
While the human version is all about free will and freedom, for other species—whether captured from the wild or bred into captivity—the circus means bondage. Captured animals are abducted away from everything good and natural—family, home, accustomed diet, comfortable routine. Chained or caged (some once roamed 30 and more miles a day!), they’re transported a world away, forced to start life anew in slavery. Captive-bred animals, never having experienced the life nature intended, know only the exploitation: abuse, crushing boredom, perpetual confinement. One wonders if they aren’t the “luckier” of the two. Continue reading
Filed under: animal cruelty, animal rights, circuses | 4 Comments »
Posted on June 21, 2010 by Seth
I am in San Diego, CA, a legendary city named after majestic sea creatures. I’ve enjoyed some of the great sights, but I would have been remiss not to visit the “World Famous” San Diego Zoo. I did so with some hesitation (and with a certain singer in my head). I was previously under the impression that the San Diego Zoo was more like a wildlife safari, where the people are in the cage moving in the environment. I was disappointed to find out that it is not. The Wild Animal Park of which I was thinking is a totally different place. The zoo is a rather nice zoo. It emphasises its conservation of endangered and threatened species. Zoos, however, are a contentious issue for many in the animal rights world. The question is whether animal exploitation is acceptable when the purpose is to bring the animals closer to humans. That’s a simplistic way of phrasing it, since circuses also bring animals closer to people, but are not something to celebrate. Yet many view the boredom and enclosed lives of animals in zoos just as poorly, arguing that media sources such as documentaries bring animals to life in a way that does not cause them suffering.
Filed under: animal advocacy, animal rights, animal welfare, circuses, endangered species, exotic animals, Uncategorized | Tagged: animal advocacy, animal rights, endangered species, zoos | 8 Comments »