full story and comments:
Steven T. Jones
documented repeated abuses of elephants by their Ringling Bros. handlers.
Animal welfare advocates and other critics of Ringling Bros. and Barnum &
Bailey Circus just won an important free speech court victory against the
city of Oakland just as they prepare to protest the circus starting its
annual run there tomorrow.
The grassroots group Humanity Through
Education announced that it has reached a $500,000 settlement with Oakland
to a lawsuit that plaintiffs Pat Cuviello and Deniz Bolbol filed following
their 2004 and 2005 arrests while trying to document abuses of elephants by
The settlement includes an injunction allowing the
activists to freely videotape the circus operations and to distribute
literature critical of circus practices, which they will exercise starting
tomorrow (Wed/8) at 6:30pm outside Oakland Arena, where Ringling Bros.
begins a five-day run.
“Pictures of Ringling Bros. Circus training of
baby elephants will be on display and behind-the-scenes video of Ringling
elephant handlers beating the animals will be shown on a large screen. The
Ringling elephant handlers videotaped beating the elephants are the same
handlers working the elephants in Oakland this week,” the group said in a
To read more about how Ringling Bros. treats its
elephants and its critics,
read our 8/12/08 cover story "Dirty Secrets Under the Big Top."