Ringling Brothers got a LOT of guff about their animal acts since then - and have had to seriously readjust what constitutes their show.
In fact, I didn't even know they still existed until my husband's work offered some deeply discounted tickets to the circus. And when Kiernen found out, he wanted to go. So, thinking that if they still exist they MUST have straightened up their act where animals are concerned, we went.
I honestly thought they'd have had to retool and be much more like Cirque de Soleil - because PETA don't play - they really take animal welfare seriously. And honestly, how fair is it to an animal meant to have miles of space to be traveling in a train several months a year?
I looked online for an unbiased website to let me know what Ringling Bros is doing these days regarding animal welfare. It seems they've put a fair chunk of money into creating a big cat rescue where the big cats go and retire. Same for the elephants. But while there were no big cats in the show, there were still the elephants. And honestly, that made me sad.
Ringling Brothers has come so far toward actually making themselves decent and kind in the animal department - why are they insisting on holding on to these elephants and making them do this stuff? Have they not seen Cirque du Soleil (clearly they have, half of their show was "borrowed" from its pages)? Come on, Ringling Brothers - you can do better. Let the elephants live in peace, on a wildlife preserve. Don't subject them to this humiliation and pain. They deserve to retire.