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quinta-feira, 1 de setembro de 2011

Elephants Deserve a Day Off Too!

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Elephants Deserve a Day Off Too!

Dear Anne,

This Labor Day, there will be no holiday for elephants and the other magnificent animals who are beaten and abused for entertainment. Please help PETA stop the year-round suffering of these animals by making a special donation right now. Donate NowAs we celebrate Labor Day, let's spare a thought for the animals who labor for human entertainment—animals like Tina and Jewel, two elephants who have finally been freed from circus cruelty.

With your support, PETA can carry out our lifesaving work for elephants and other animals condemned to lives of suffering, privation, and abuse.

The fun and relaxation that many of us take for granted on this holiday weekend are a far cry from the extreme hardship that elephants endure in traveling shows. Every such elephant lives under constant threat from the dreaded bullhook, a steel-tipped rod that resembles a fireplace poker. Circus employees repeatedly sink the bullhook into the most sensitive parts of elephants' skin in order to force them to move faster, move up, stand on their hind legs, bow, or do whatever puzzling thing the trainer wants them to do, over and over again. Tina and Jewel have finally escaped this hellish life.

Emaciated and ailing, these two dear elephants were hauled across the country by Cole Bros. Circus and beaten in order to force them to perform painful and unnatural tricks under the big top. After PETA filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) calling on the agency to confiscate Jewel, the agency slowly began to respond, first ordering that the elephants be removed from the road. Unfortunately, they were eventually forced back on the road again.

While Tina and Jewel were off the road, PETA received a tip from an informed source who reported further violations of the minimal regulations that exist to protect animals used in entertainment, so we submitted a complaint urging the USDA to confiscate these two animals. Finally—after so many years of abuse—the USDA confiscated Jewel. Tina was surrendered, and both were given a new home at the San Diego Zoo. They were subsequently moved to the Los Angeles Zoo, where they remain today. Although far from ideal, the zoo does not use bullhooks.

This year, a small measure of justice was given to Tina and Jewel. The U.S. District Court in Beaumont, Texas, slapped Cole Bros. Circus with a $150,000 fine and four years of probation for illegally selling the two elephants in violation of the Endangered Species Act. The USDA has also formally charged Cole Bros. Circus with numerous violations of the Animal Welfare Act, including unsafe enclosures and failure to provide adequate veterinary care.

Tina and Jewel have been freed from their chains, but the elephants who remain behind spend most of their lives, day and night, in shackles so restrictive that they cannot take even two steps in any direction. This is absolute agony for them. In the wild, elephants walk up to 30 miles a day. Captive elephants don't understand why they can't move, walk, roll over, or lie down—or why they are beaten with the bullhook for daring to reach out with their trunks to touch another elephant or to pluck a blade of grass.

By making a gift right now, you'll help PETA continue to tell the animals' side of the story—the one that animal abusers don't want the public to hear.

The good news is that—thanks in no small part to the dedication of compassionate supporters like you—progress is being made for elephants who are still suffering the daily abuse that Tina and Jewel endured. PETA's relentless pressure is forcing reluctant regulators to act for the elephants, and attendance at circuses like Cole Bros.—which has recently been fined by the USDA on the strength of an investigation by PETA—is continuing to shrink as more and more parents refuse to expose their children to animal abuse masquerading as entertainment. PETA is working with activists across the country to get cities to enact or consider bans on bullhooks and even bans on animal acts all together.

Please remember that it is supporters like you who have helped to make this progress possible. As we honor working people on Labor Day, I urge you to make a generous donation to PETA today for Tina, Jewel, and all animals forced into lives of involuntary servitude and suffering.

Thank you for remembering the animals who are exploited and abused in the name of entertainment this Labor Day.

Kind regards,

Ingrid E. Newkirk

P.S. Elephants deserve more than a day off. They deserve to be free from the beatings, chains, and constant abuse that they have endured for their entire lives in circuses. Won't you support PETA's lifesaving work for these and all animals by making a special donation right now?


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This e-mail was sent by PETA, 501 Front St., Norfolk, VA 23510 USA.

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