Friday letters: Circus animals treated badly

March 28, 2014 

— The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus is in town again. And although it bills itself as the “Greatest Show on Earth,” I tend to think of it as the “Cruelest Show on Earth.”

It is documented that the animals are regularly beaten and hurt. The animals may look charming, but I assure you that they are not performing willingly. The behaviors at the circus are not natural animal behaviors, and the animal is only performing because it is afraid of being hurt. When the animal is not in the ring, it is being kept in cramped quarters, tied up and shipped from one location to another with the goal of making money for the Ringling enterprise.

Many countries and cities have banned the use of wild animals in circuses, and it is time for the United States to do the same. I am disappointed in the Colonial Life Arena folks who have allowed the circus to use their facilities and would strongly encourage people to support ethical entertainment by not attending the circus. If tickets already have been purchased, I encourage you to do your own research and not purchase tickets next year. We have to be better than this. The animals are depending on us.

Amelia R. Linder

Columbia

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