Circus Versus Animal Rights

Watching live, the last show of Ringling Brothers Circus was a sad event. Traveling with them when I was 17 was a huge honor. Groups like PETA are in part responsible for shutting the circus down. Ticket sales dropped when the elephants left. I gained a lot of respect for these Pachyderms. They love to interact with people and are very playful. There has been a lot of controversy of the “rights” of theses and other animals.

First, let’s address animal rights. One thing is clear, in the wild, animals have no rights. It is survival of the fittest only. Their life is extremely rough. It is nothing like Disney’s “Lion King” where the animals talk to each other and just want to get along. On the other side, in captivity, animals do not pay taxes and they do not vote. In essence, they have no “rights” here either. “Animal rights” is just a term activists use to put animals more on a human level. There are not many people that wish to cause animals harm, but again, there is nothing in this world that gives them “rights.”

When I traveled with the circus, some would argue the animals were treated roughly. Only by our snowflake standards, but not that of the Serengeti plains. The standards there are much different and more brutal. Only the healthiest and toughest survive. There are no veterinarians to attend the sick or the wounded.

One friend actually compared animals in the circus to putting our own children in cages. Talk about extreme. (Okay, some of your children, might belong in a cage, but that is another topic.) But really, animals are not people. They do not think like us. In the circus, a lion does not dream of what it would be like to be roaming free on the plains of Africa. They are just wired for survival. They accept their circumstances and live.

Animals are not people, period. When animals are equated to people and made to be “humanized,” we as humans become degraded. When you devalue human life, it then has little meaning for those who think they are better. We become no better than animals themselves. Suddenly genocide becomes acceptable. For instance, in Nazi Germany a campaign was waged against the Jews. They wanted to eliminate the “race” of Jewish people. These people had no value. They were exterminated like animals

Three things must happen if the elite wishes to do away with a certain population of people. In brief: you must have the right technology. Second, you need licensed, certified executioners. And lastly, to justify the campaign, you must take that segment of people and make them appear less than human or subhuman in the eyes of all others. The Germans had all 3 of these in operation. That’s the only way you can get the masses on board. By the way, this same campaign also worked with unborn children in this country as well.

Animal rights groups have shown pictures of animals being treated cruelly in obscure videos. Sorry, but that’s not the norm in animal training. In actuality, the animal trainers I know, love their animals as much as you and I would love our cat or dog. Probably even more so. When traveling with the circus, I remember the performance director. He was very strict and stern. He had to be, to keep the show on track. He was also the tiger trainer. Many people believed he loved his tigers more than he did the clowns. I was one of those clowns. I could say this to be true.

On the other side, use common sense. These animals are also a commodity. This is how the owners make their living. The owner has nothing to gain when one of their animals is wounded or hurt. They want nothing more than their animals to be healthy and happy. I will make one exception. In a dictatorial type country, the trainers do not own the animals, but are “slaves” themselves. They would be punished if the animal doesn’t perform. This is a bad situation for both man and beast.

These obscure videos are indeed rarities, but they do exist. But that’s like the same group showing a domestic dog that’s been beaten and left for dead in saying, “See, all owners are this way and we should ban pets forever.” Their whole campaign is based on deceit.

If you believe in God, then you realize animals were not created equal to people. They were put here to serve people. Yes, for food and for clothing. In the Old Testament, they were used as scapegoats. They were used to atone for the sins of man (or woman). They were killed and then burned at the alters as a sacrifice. They still were a source of food and clothing in the New Testament

Look at Genesis 1:26. Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals.”

Psalm 8:8 says about the same thing: God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” Animals were created to serve us not the other way around. Again, it means to subdue or have dominion. Not to torture. While animals may not have any rights, there is no excuse for cruelty.

I can picture this hilarious scene on judgment day. The animal-rights activists are all in line to get into Heaven. They are standing at the gate in front of God Almighty himself. He asked the question, “What were your biggest accomplishment while on Earth?” “Well God, we stood up for the animals. We kept people from making coats from their fur… We freed animals from circuses… And we convince many people to eat vegetables only.” I can see God looking at them with a puzzled look, asking, “Why?”

Do I believe these animal rights people will make it into Heaven? Well, why not? I do believe salvation comes by the grace of God, not by the works we do. It is a free gift for those who accept it. I believe there will be more people in heaven than we think.

Okay, so if your religion includes worship of animals, you got me. Not much I can say, except, “Seriously? Maybe you should try worshiping the Creator, not the creation.” Let’s say you are under the assumption we evolved. I must add, modern science is showing it less and less likely. Anyway, if you believe we have evolved, I will simply quote a marvelous bumper sticker I once saw. “I didn’t claw my way to the top of the food chain just to eat vegetables.”

Putting yourself before God is a dangerous thing. It’s been man’s mistake throughout the ages. Thinking we know better. Or we have some special insight that may never have been revealed. God’s view on animals is very clear… They are not humans. They don’t even think like humans.

As a kid, the circus was responsible for introducing me to these glorious animals. I grew up with a respect for them. In a zoo, they are on display only, you never see how intelligent these magnificent creatures really are. The circus is where you see these animals with their different personalities and respect for their trainers. I find it a shame my grandchildren will not have the same respect for these animals that I grew up with. They will only see them as dangerous or as predators which is okay to be hunted. I have never been a fan of trophy hunting and never will be. The respect I have for these animals came from the circus. It was ingrained in me as a child.