Rep. James P. Moran Jr (D-VA) introduced a bill today entitled the Traveling Exotic Animal Protection Act, whose aim is to restrict the use of animals in circuses.
Unfortunately the first hit on Google News when searching Moran’s name was a story by the HuffPo. Not that I have a problem with HuffPo, but their lede is that OMG BOB BARKER IS GONNA GO TO WASHINGTON AND TALK ABOUT THE ANIMALS!
A few interesting things I can say now about the bill, before I’ve had a chance to read it:
- The bill will affect all circuses that use animals (Cirque du Soleil does not), but the biggest bull to go after is Ringling Brothers — who employed my parents for two years and twirled me around the country.
- The Morgan’s district in Virginia represents Vienna, VA — the location of Ringling’s headquarters. If you wanted to send me mail while I was on the road, you would send it to a PO box in Vienna and whoever picked up from that box would ship it out to where ever we were.
- From my own personal experience, the animals were treated better than the performers because performers can fend for themselves. Everyone was set up around and had to abide to the comfort and safety of the animals.
I’d like to read the Act itself once it’s up on THOMAS. I’ve looked and it’s not there yet.
And here’s an old school jem for ya:
That was taken during our time with Robert’s Bros. Circus. That’s me up top!