Wednesday, December 07, 2011

..Activists look to ban Circus from Palm Beach County..

December 06, 2011 8:42 PM

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. -- Animal activists spoke out Tuesday seeking to ban the circus from Palm Beach County.

"When I was a kid, I went to the circus. I didn't know any better. My parents didn't know any better," said Don Anthony of the Animal Rights Foundation of Florida.

Anthony was among a group of a couple dozen activists attending the meeting of the Palm Beach County commission.

"I would never bring any child to the circus now, because I know how these animals are abused, how they are made to live in cages, how they're beaten," said Anthony.

Anthony and the others asked commissioners to ban circuses using animals or at the least outlaw use of bull hooks, electric prods, whips and chains. The speakers spent a lot of time speaking about the elephants.

"In captivity they can not engage in any natural behavior, and spend most of their time in chains," said one activist.

The animals are known for mourning deaths of family members. The activists claim the elephants spirits are broken in captivity.

CBS 12: "Why did you want to come here and talk to commissioners?"

"Because I don't like what they do to the elephants," said six-year-old Aaliyana Smith of Delray Beach.

Six-year-old Aaliyana and Eight-year-old Dominic Geragi of Boca Raton are young activists who both spoke at the meeting.

"I just want to get the word out and I hope they vote to at least ban the bull hooks and the abusive tools," said Geragi.

We contacted Cole Brothers Circus, they have a different take on things.

Renee Storey of Cole Brothers said..."It's a violation of constitutional rights to ban one's business or the circus from a community. The circus is subject to inspections by animal welfare agencies, including Florida Fish and Wildlife, which regulates the exotic animals."

Cole Brothers also points out there were no violations during their most recent local appearance in November.

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