Your Guide to the Reality of Animal Circus

"The academic panel concluded that there appears to be little evidence to demonstrate that the welfare of animals kept in travelling circuses is any better or worse than that of animals kept in other captive environments" - Executive Summary of the DEFRA Circus Working Group 2007

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Monday, 7 November 2011

More Feedback on June 2011 "debate"

Silent MajorityImage by cbcastro via FlickrBecause the words of other angry citizens of the UK are usually drowned out by the shrill and aggressive opinions of animal rights supporters, the internet provides us with an opportunity to set the balance right. Previously I posted up feedback from a supporter of the British circus who took huge issue with the "debate" on 23rd June in Parliament regarding a movement to ban wild animals in travelling circuses.  The same writer, who wishes to remain anonymous due the potential of receiving death threats or violence from the animal rights movement, contacted me with her further comments of this rather ludicrous discussion that has provided impetus for the various animal rights organizations in the UK to push for a ban on wild animals in circuses. The writer, whilst clearly impassioned and emotional about the whole issue, makes some valid points, which I think readers of this blog will find interesting...

23.6.11 Debate on banning circus wild animals. 64 MPs (most in favour of the ban) took part.

Labour MP Jim Fitzpatrick spoke of the 2006 Animal Welfare Act. In 2006, as he was then a minister he must have been aware of the independent scientific study on circus animals which concluded their welfare was good and that they should not be banned.

MP Fitzpatrick mentioned he had been lobbied by the RSPCA, the Born Free Foundation (BFF) and Animal Defenders (AD). These people know that if they get national publicity there are millions of Pounds available in this country for animal charities. They have spent years persuading the press to print unfounded accusations about circus animals. When they do they receive huge donations from the public. MP Fitzpatrick ignored the independent study and quoted organizations with strong financial motives. Is this justice?

23.6.11 Debate on banning circus wild animals. 64 MPs (most in favour of the ban) took part.

MP Pritchard claimed it a myth that if wild circus animals were banned this would lead to the end of zoos. Considering the Born Free Foundation are on record as saying they want to see circus animals banned and zoos closed this ban would be the first step in that direction.

The more animal activists’ demands are met, the more powerful they welcome, the richer and the more famous they become the more demands they will make. They are already trying to get certain animals banned, such as elephants in zoos.

This MP claimed too that the circus ban would not affect the film and TV industry. Many films in this country could not have been made here without using tame circus animals. He also said that many animals used in TV and films are warehoused “like a carton of vegetables.” He should visit the private zoos where the facilities for these animals are very good. Inaccurate and uninformed again, Mr. Pritchard.

23.6.11 Debate on banning circus wild animals. 64 MPs (most in favour of the ban) took part.

MP Pritchard correctly mentioned Labour MP Angela Smith’s long record on this issue. Ms. Smith is more than a supporter of the animal rights movement; she is a leading figure in it. In 1998, shortly after the Political Animal Lobby, P.A.L., had donated £1 million to the Labour Party, she showed a video to an invited audience of MPs and the national media. This had been made by animal rightists without any checks being made on its authenticity before its showing. She also announced in April 2010, on the front page of the Express newspaper, that she would demand a debate on closing all the zoos in the country. “They should all be phased out” if Labour won the election. Before becoming an MP what was Ms. Smith’s profession?

Tory MP Andre Rosindell, who had studied circus animals at close quarters, put up a spirited and factual defense for keeping them in circus despite constant interruption. Several MPs of all parties rose to their feet to stop him when Mr. Rosindell started to speak of the financial motives of the animal rights activists for attacking animal circuses. These MPs were playing to the gallery where representatives of three animal charities, who have raised millions by anti-circus activities, were listening to the debate.

Labour MP Chuka Ummina claimed the life expectancy of circus animals was shorter than other animals. After many months of study Dr. Kiley-Worthington found their longevity records longer than most zoos. Labour MP Jim Dowd said he was a lifelong atheist but he hoped there was a hell. Is this the kind of MP we have in this Christian country?

Tory MP Matthew Offord mentioned various countries which he claimed had banned animal circuses. Not only had some of these not banned them but circuses in these countries were enjoying full houses of large audiences.

23.6.11 Debate on banning circus wild animals. 64 MPs (most in favour of the ban) took part.

Lib Dem MP Leech spoke of Anne the elephant. This animal had been the subject of campaigns by the three animal charities present for many years. DEFRA and twelve independent vets had often examined her and decided she was in good condition for her age. She is possibly the oldest elephant in captivity in Europe. The vets said she bore no sign of abuse. When a groom was shown alledgedly ill-treating her, her owners reluctantly sent her to Longleat. MP Leech also talked of the film “Water for Elephants” which is a purely fictitious story of circus. MP Leech advised his fellow MPs to see the film. These days film companies would not dare to make a circus film without showing animal cruelty. Because many, many film extras are animal activists and they might burn down the film set.

Circus The Truth was formed to counteract the misinformation spread by the animal rights agenda but in addition to fighting the corner for circus animals I think there is also a further need to promote and celebrate the circus in general, especially in Great Britain.
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