Target: Mayor Kirk Caldwell of Honolulu, Hawaii
Goal: Cancel the Moscow International Circus’ upcoming animal acts and remember the tragic deaths caused by previous animal performances
Many still remember the horrific events that took place in Honolulu on August 20, 1994. A terrified circus elephant broke free of its restraints, trampled a trainer to death, and then began rampaging through the streets until finally being killed by local police. Ever since that tragic day, the Neal S. Blaisdell community center has stopped hosting all animal related events; lately, however, they have experienced a change of heart and have booked the Moscow International Circus (and their animals) for a show in October 2014.
Animal abuse is practically a staple of circus training. Although the Moscow International Circus plans to omit elephants from its Honolulu show, they still intend on showcasing wild cats among other animals. According to animal rights organization PETA, “Captive big cats kill an average of one person every year in the United States and injure 10 more.” Because of the harsh working conditions and often inhumane living situations, any captive animal presents a great risk of unpredictability and violence. The gruesome mauling of Roy Horn (of Siegfried and Roy) in 2003 is a prime example of this.
Sign the petition below to convince Honolulu officials that animal performances are extremely dangerous, regardless of the animal. Help them see that circus animals are conditioned to be obedient through fear and pain, and that employing their services only perpetuates their torture.
Dear Mayor Caldwell,
We have not forgotten the tragic 1994 incident in which a terrified circus elephant rampaged through Honolulu streets until being fatally shot by police. The chaos resulted in one human death and several injuries, and could have been avoided completely if the tortured animal had been prevented from performing in the first place. Most recently, the Neal S. Blaisdell Center has employed the services of the Moscow International Circus. Though the circus has chosen to exclude elephant performances, the animals they will showcase still present tremendous danger.
Circus training is a torturous process of punishment, fear, and pain. Animals are made to obey or they are subject to whipping, poking, and ridicule. Even when the creatures on not in training, they can face extreme physical abuse from merciless and sometimes drunken trainers. Is it any wonder that these animals lash out in fright and confusion, especially in the presence of hectic crowds? By allowing animal performances once again, you are perpetuating the torture of these helpless creatures and endangering the citizens of Honolulu.
For this reason, I urge you to cancel the upcoming animal acts scheduled to take place in your city. Please, think of both the animals’ welfare and the welfare of hundreds of circus attendees. Help end the cruel cycle of abuse and violence.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: chensiyuan via Wikimedia Commons