The Melha Shrine Circus made a very smart, progressive, and humane decision in 2016 to remove animals from their circus, but unfortunately they have decided to bring elephants and tigers back this year.
Ringling Bros. and many other circuses with animals have been struggling for years, due to our society's awakening to their barbaric cruelty and our more modernized culture with many more options beyond animal acts. In fact, even the Melha Shriners' Potentate stated the following about their 2106 animal-free circus in the July/August Camelha: "There has been so much positive publicity about our circus. Some people missed having animals but the overall feedback was that more than half of the replies felt that not only did the show go on but that it paved the way for future circuses." And even the founder of Hamid Circus, which provides elephants for the Melha Shriners each year, admits that animal-free circuses are the way of the future. Thanks to the greater exposure of the horrific daily torture and cruelty to circus animals, and our children's new views on entertainment, such archaic circuses must either adapt to our society's new tastes or close their doors, as Ringling has done.
Both the LA and Dallas Shrine Circuses went animal-free a few years ago. It is time to follow in their footsteps and do the right thing. The Shriners are based on compassion, right? Please sign this petition demanding that they show some for the animals and move forward, not backward. In this modern age, there are countless alternatives to animal torture for entertainment.
Circus animals are deprived of everything that is natural to them and forced to perform tricks that are beaten into them with bullhooks and electric prods by the trainers. In fact, the Melha Shrine Circus uses animals from exhibitors with LONG lists of Animal Welfare Act (AWA) violations and accidents/injuries. Hamid Circus Co. supplies the elephants, yet is not even a USDA licensed animal exhibitor! So Hamid rents elephants from various OTHER animal exhibitors, such as Carson & Barnes, Franzen, Liebel, Tom Demry, and Doug Terranova. They all have a very long history of horrendous AWA violations and even lawsuits. And the tigers come from Vincent Von Duke, who also is not a licensed animal exhibitor and rents tigers from Georgina Donoho, who has a vast array of AWA citations...just like the elephant exhibitors. And you can see ALL Shrine Circuses' AWA violations and accidents/injuries violations at http://www.mediapeta.com/peta/PDF/ShrineCircusFactsheet.pdf
So PLEASE sign this petition demanding that the Melha Shrine Circus once again remove animals from their show. We refuse to support their circus until they do so. It is time to move on and show compassion, not cruelty! Thank you!