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Poll: Ringling Brothers Fined for Allegations of Elephant Abuse

Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus was recently fined for alleged abuse of elephants. Will this affect your decision to attend the circus?


"The Greatest Show On Earth" is paying for the alleged abuse of elephants that took place on several occasions over the past 5 years in violation of the Animal Welfare Act.

For the alleged abuse, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus was fined $270,000 by the USDA.

Ringling Brothers admits to no such violations. Besides paying the fine, the company has agreed to develop and implement annual compliance training for all employees who work with and handle animals.

Patch wants to know if these alleged animal abuse violations will change your mind about attending the circus. Vote in today's poll and elaborate in the comments section below.

Rita Patterson December 06, 2011 at 06:08 PM
I too haven't attended Ringling since I was a kid. I take my kids annually to Circus Smirkus, an all kids troop out of VT. They tour the New England states and do not use animals. They are incredible, a good value and supports an investment in our youth!
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 01:41 PM
There is no abuse, they paid the fine because it was easier and cheaper than lawyers to fight it.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 01:41 PM
There is no abuse, they paid the fine because it was easier and cheaper than lawyers to fight it.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 01:41 PM
There is no abuse, they paid the fine because it was easier and cheaper than lawyers to fight it.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 01:42 PM
Video is edited very well to give you the wrong impression
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 01:42 PM
There is no abuse, they paid the fine because it was easier and cheaper than lawyers to fight it.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 01:42 PM
There is no abuse, they paid the fine because it was easier and cheaper than lawyers to fight it.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 01:43 PM
Let your kids see the animals they will enjoy it and so will you.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 01:43 PM
There is no abuse, they paid the fine because it was easier and cheaper than lawyers to fight it.
Ellie December 07, 2011 at 01:56 PM
I would like to hear how you will explain away these photos of Ringling Bros employees at their Center for Elephant Conservation facility in Florida hooking, jabbing and shocking their baby elephants to train them to perform circus tricks. http://www.ringlingbeatsanimals.com/bound-babies.asp
Ellie December 07, 2011 at 02:16 PM
O. Tunamble...what part is edited? If it looks like abuse, sounds like abuse, it is abuse.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 02:26 PM
I don't buy it. the PETA wackos will do anything to make waves. Including bogus complaints, video editing and photo manipulation. Bottom line the performing animals are well cared for and lead healthy fulfilled lives.
Ellie December 07, 2011 at 02:34 PM
The pictures of Ringling using brute force on their baby elephants were not taken by PETA. They were taken by Sammy Haddock while he was working for Ringling Bros Circus, he was so ashamed of his involvement in abusing these baby elephants that he wanted to show the world what goes on behind closed doors. http://www.ringlingbeatsanimals.com/pdfs/haddockDeclarationRedacted.pdf
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 02:54 PM
He took money from PETA to get the pictures while in the employ of Ringling and his tapes were not admissible in court due to that fact. Any organization that would play dirty like that can't be trusted. Again the facts are in front of your face you now have to choice but to believe them. No abuse. They paid the fines because it was cheaper than paying the lawyers. I am thankful for the animal performers that have allow me and my children to experience these wonderful creatures and allow us to develop an appreciation for them. Without the circus my children would not have ever seen a live lion or elephant or zebra. Thank you Ringling for bringing these animals into our lives.
Ellie December 07, 2011 at 03:04 PM
You have your facts wrong. Talk about dirty tricks, no one can hold a candle to Ringling Bros Circus. http://media.signonsandiego.com/news/documents/2011/07/13/elephant.pdf. Deborah Nelson did a yearlong investigation on Ringling Bros Circus and wrote this story. A lot of evidence about Feld Entertainment/Ringling Bros Circus was discovered in official court documents that they were involved in years past. These links show the degree Feld with go to keep people quiet. http://motherjones.com/environment/2011/10/ringling-bros-elephant-abuse.
shannon4animalRights:) December 07, 2011 at 03:31 PM
wow ooffa tunamble, why do i get the feeling that you work for your ringling? you sure are dedicated to ensuring that animals continue to suffer for the benefit of children who love animals and would be devastated to know the truth. I have protested at a number of this horrific circus events, and many of the people who walk right past the protesters, come back out and say that, after hearing and seeing the evidence against ringling, there is nothing enjoyable about sitting in a stadium waiting for a show to begin when you know those beautiful animals are behind curtains, suffering at the hands of dispicable individuals, such as yourself. "thank you ringling for bringing those animals into our lives" --really ooffa?! wow, you are really a peice of work. ringling will continue to torture, abuse and imprison animals, but justice will prevail. children don't want any part in that, and over time, you will go bankrupt from fines and lack of sales. can't wait!!
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 04:05 PM
Yes Really. Nope not an employee just someone who can see through all the BS and and enjoy the healthy happy animals that the circus brings to us. Long live the great american family entertainment that is the circus. I repeat open your eyes there is no abuse. And anyone can accuse and leave the accused to pick up the pieces. Deborah Nelson is no different than someone who yells fire in a crowded theater. Just making unfounded accusations and leaving the scene. I'm sure you don't really believe the garbage she spewed in her article. I know you are smarter than that.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 04:15 PM
I can see there is no changing your minds. When the kool aid has been consumed there is no turning the animal crazies back towards rational thought. See you at the circus.
Ellie December 07, 2011 at 04:25 PM
The only time Ringling employees speak the truth is when they are put under oath and must swear to tell the truth and nothing but the truth to the courts. I've read those court documents that is why I know they do not train nor treat their exotic animals humanely. This is what Gary Jacobson testified to in a 2009 trial. "When Jacobson, now the Center for Elephant Conservation's director, took the stand, he conceded that Ringling's baby elephants are hit with bullhooks to train them to follow commands. Sullivan twice pressed him to say whether he considered the training practices to be "humane." Jacobson described them as "better" than they used to be, but under cross-examination he admitted that he conducts the earliest training sessions with baby elephants behind closed doors and never on videotape."
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 04:36 PM
I can see there is no changing your minds. When the kool aid has been consumed there is no turning the animal crazies back towards rational thought. See you at the show
Ellie December 07, 2011 at 04:41 PM
See you there! That is if Ringling still has exotic animals in their shows. Hopefully the Traveling Exotic Animal Protection Act will pass ending the abuse of these animals.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 04:43 PM
I can see there is no changing your minds. When the kool aid has been consumed there is no turning the animal crazies back towards rational thought. See you at the Polls.
Ellie December 07, 2011 at 04:46 PM
I will stand up for these abused circus animals for as long as it takes.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 05:06 PM
I can see there is no changing your mind. When the kool aid has been consumed there is no turning the animal crazies back towards rational thought
Ellie December 07, 2011 at 05:15 PM
Quote: "I can see there is no changing your mind. When the kool aid has been consumed there is no turning the animal crazies back towards rational thought"
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 05:17 PM
good quote.
shannon4animalRights:) December 07, 2011 at 06:32 PM
so sad to read that bit about gary jocobson's confession.. hard to imagine having that much power over those baby elephants and choosing to use it to harm them for "entertainment" purposes. it's hard to believe there can be so many sadistic people out there.. ooffa, i hope one day you'll come to your senses and join us in the protest line.
ooffa tunamble December 07, 2011 at 07:24 PM
I will be in the protest line the one that debunks your crazy cause.
alex December 07, 2011 at 10:06 PM
OK, i agree PETA people are crazy, they don't play fair.. they LIE etc. that's all been proven over and over (and it's not the point). HOWEVER... !!!! "Without the circus my children would not have ever seen a live lion or elephant or zebra" TAKE YOUR KIDS TO A ZOO !! why does an elephant have to stand on 2 feet for you to see them ? I am SURE most of the animals are cared for and treated perfect. I am also sure some trainer should be eaten by a lion... but again.. take kids to the zoo to see animals. when you want to see sharks, you goto mystic to see them in their (mostly) natural settings. you want to see a lion, why goto a circus? Circus is for entertainment... zoo's are for animals.
L.Ashley January 02, 2012 at 05:15 PM
Animals used in a circus = animal abuse, so I have not gone to a circus with animals since I was a child and did not allow my daughter to attend any for this reason. Now she is a grown woman and passing the same message along. It's long since time to end the exploitation and cruelty. NO MORE ANIMAL CIRCUSES.

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