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Modern Day Slavery

August 4, 2016 by Leave a Comment


The News

A slave is defined as “someone who is the legal property of another and is forced to obey them.” Across the globe, wild animals are held captive in circuses and subjected to violent punishment in order to force them to perform for human entertainment. Their plight is chillingly similar to that of the victims of the African slave trade.

Like the victims of the African slave trade, circus animals are often kidnapped from their homes and held captive in chains and prison cages — when they’re not performing.  Circus elephants, for instance, spend 97% of their lives shackled. One investigation showed that, for weeks at a time, UniverSoul Circus kept tigers in cages so small that they could not make “normal postural adjustments.” The confinement causes many animals to go insane.

Chains are used to restrain non-human animals in just as they were to restrain humans during the African slave trade.

Chains are used to restrain animals in circuses just as they were to restrain humans during the African slave trade.

Like the victims of the African slave trade, circus animals work out of fear of punishment. Tigers and lions are whipped; monkeys and camels are beaten with sticks; and elephants are stabbed with bullhooks, devices that resemble a fireplace poker. Fear is the only way to entice wild animals to perform unnatural – and often scary and painful – tricks in front of noisy crowds.

Like the African slaves, circus animals are forced to work under threat of violent punishment.

Like African slaves, circus animals are forced to work under threat of violent punishment.

The bullhook is a weapon used to beat and control elephants in circuses.

The bullhook is a weapon used to beat and control elephants in circuses.

Like the victims of the victims of the African slave trade, circus animals often taken have their children taken from them. The kidnapped children are taught to fear humans at a very age. Baby elephants, for instance, are tied up; beaten with bullhooks; and shocked with police tasers. Young animals, especially lions and tigers, are often used for photo ops.

Baby animals are oftentimes taken away away from their mothers in circuses, not so differently from how families were separated at Southern slave auctions.

In circuses and slave auctions, babies are and were taken away from their mothers.

The plight of circus animals falls squarely into the definition of slavery.

Your Turn

To learn more about the plight of circus animals and what you can do to help them please visit Born Free USA.

 


Filed under: Entertainment
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“I am Cecil.”

July 29, 2015 by Leave a Comment


Opinion

In the past couple of days, millions of people on social media, who don’t normally address animal cruelty, have expressed sorrow and outrage about the murder of Cecil, the beloved lion in Zimbabwe. While we have people’s attention, how can we tap into these powerful emotions to awaken them to the plight of other animals who are equally deserving of a life free from harm? How can we help people connect the dots between Cecil, who endured 40 hours of agony, and the billions of farm animals whose entire lives are consumed by suffering?

I-am-cecil

Please use this rare moment in time when the world is paying attention to ensure that Cecil did not die in vain and that his murder is wake-up call to the millions of people who have not made the connection between the animals we love – like lions, whales and dogs – and the animals we consume. They are all the same.

One easy way to help people make the connection is to share these images on Facebook and convey your thoughts about why farm animals deserve to live in peace just as much as Cecil.

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Filed under: Food
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Video of Kids Shooting Lions in Zoo With Pellet Guns Sparks Outrage

August 6, 2014 by Leave a Comment


The News

The zookeeper at the Giza Zoo in Cairo, Egypt didn’t intervene when teenagers used a pellet gun to shoot at lions in a small cage.  According to news reports, the zookeeper himself has taunted the caged animals to get a rise out of them in exchange for tips from zoo visitors.

News & Opinion

I don’t know what’s worse: teen bullies shooting lions at the zoo or the fact that the cages are so small that the lions have virtually no space to move. Even in the best of circumstances, zoos are prisons for animals because they are unable to do anything that comes naturally to them, such as hunting, traveling long distances, teaching their children how to survive and thrive in the wild. They are bored, listless, lethargic, stressed and often lonely.  Please learn more about the inherent cruelty of zoos and what you can do to help.


Filed under: Entertainment
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