Become a digitalPLUS subscriber. 99¢ for 4 weeks.
News Opinion Readers Respond

Circus: Committed to the humane treatment of animals in our care

Next week, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey will return to Baltimore with Fully Charged!, the 141st edition of The Greatest Show On Earth. Everyone at Ringling Bros. takes great pride in presenting quality family entertainment to audiences in Baltimore and across the country.

Unfortunately, animal rights groups such as People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals have used our return to continue their radical agenda by distorting our dedication to animal care and welfare. It's time we set the record straight.

Everyone with Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey is very proud of our human and animal partnerships, and the physical and behavioral needs of all our animals are a top priority in every city we visit.

All of our animals are trained using a system of repetition and reward. Elephants and horses are transported in custom-built, specially designed railway cars. As a result, the health and vitality of our animals is something we can showcase at each and every Ringling Bros. performance.

The claims of animal cruelty made in recent letters ("Pinkett-Smith is correct: Circus is cruel to elephants," March 12) are a disservice and an insult to the dedicated men and women who spend their lives caring for all the animals with Ringling Bros.

In addition to our daily commitment to providing the very best in animal care, Ringling Bros. is dedicated to preserving the endangered Asian elephant. In 1995, the Ringling Bros. Center for Elephant Conservation was established to ensure that future generations have the opportunity to experience this magnificent species.

This 200-acre facility was designed for the research, reproduction and retirement of the Asian elephant and enables Ringling Bros. to share its elephant husbandry knowledge with veterinary and conservation organizations around the world.

Since 1992, there have been 23 Asian elephants born at the center, and we have the largest sustainable population of captive Asian elephants in the Western hemisphere. This is a major step for the conservation of this highly endangered species.

So rather than take what extremist groups like PETA say at face value, we invite all Baltimore-area families to come see for themselves how all the animals are thriving at The Greatest Show On Earth.

Stephen Payne

The writer is vice-president for corporate communications at Feld Entertainment, Inc.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • SRB miffed that Pinkett Smith hasn't returned city's calls
    SRB miffed that Pinkett Smith hasn't returned city's calls

    Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blakewants to teach Jada Pinkett Smith a lesson in that old, scratch my back, I'll scratch yours thing.

  • Pinkett Smith's aunt 'taken aback' by SRB's dig
    Pinkett Smith's aunt 'taken aback' by SRB's dig

    Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake wasn't exactly jumping when Jada Pinkett Smith asked for her help in protecting elephants earlier this week.

  • SRB: Pride of pachydermal proportions

    That Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blakewould respond to a letter from constituent Jada Pinkett Smith expressing concern about the welfare of circus elephants with a complaint that the actress had not returned the mayor's earlier calls, demonstrates an upside down understanding of public service...

  • Pinkett Smith should see circus for herself
    Pinkett Smith should see circus for herself

    I read The Sun's recent article regarding circus elephants being mistreated, and I feel Jada Pinkett Smith has been misinformed regarding how the circus and other traveling circuses around the country care for their animals ("Jada Pinkett Smith urges SRB to protect elephants," March 6).

  • At root of much youth violence is hunger
    At root of much youth violence is hunger

    Your article, "City's violence can take hidden toll" (Dec. 14), was important in that it outlined the issues of crime in neighborhoods and help that is being undertaken to curb the violence from the children of this city. It is important, but it doesn't address the cause for some of the...

  • Dealing with childhood violence
    Dealing with childhood violence

    Thank you for Andrea McDaniels' brilliant article on the impact of violence on children ("Advocates aim to save Baltimore children from impact of violence," Dec. 14). Pediatricians are so concerned about this issue — called Adverse Childhood Experiences — that we have made the...

Comments
Loading