Celebrities Stand Up For Exotic Circus Animals, In Support Of Bill Introduced To Congress [VIDEO]
Actors Ed Asner, Danny Boyle, James Cromwell, Jorja Fox, Eric Szmanda, and many others, are standing up for the rights of circus animals and in support of a new bill that would restrict the use of exotic animals in traveling shows.
Introduced to the 115th Congress on Tuesday, the bill has been referred to the Subcommittee on Livestock and Foreign Agriculture. In a bipartisan effort, Representatives Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) and Ryan Costello (R-PA) introduced the bill which is backed by Animal Defenders International (ADI).
“The captivity of exotic animals has proven over the years to be torturous to some of the most majestic creatures on Earth, and downright dangerous for the people who come to see them,” said Rep. Grijalva.
The bill, which was also introduced during the 113th and 114th Congress, has never made it out of committee but the current iteration has more sponsorships than bills past. In addition, the bill has an outpouring of celebrity support. Also, the public seems more interested now in ending cruelty to exotic circus animals – the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus will close forever this May due, in part, to the work of animal rights groups and public outrage.
Fox and Szmanda, stars of the hit franchise CSI, and former Congressman Jim Moran, who first introduced the bill in 2014, appeared alongside Rep. Costello and Rep. Grijalva during a press conference for the bill on Tuesday. Legendary TV host Bob Barker also contributed with a video message.
“Americans are becoming increasingly aware that circus animals suffer from violent training techniques and severe confinement,” Barker said during his video message. “Big, wild animals should not be part of the traveling circus and simply put, animal acts in circuses are antiquated and belong in the past, in a time when humans were ignorant about the needs of the other species who share our planet.”
You can watch ADI’s short film, The Reluctant Entertainers, below.
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