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Dear White House Members,

I am writing as a constituent to ask for your support of federal legislation to protect wild animals in circuses. Such legislation addresses an important issue that gravely concerns me about the welfare of wild animals forced to perform in traveling circuses.

Careful research and detailed undercover investigations have shown the welfare of animals is unacceptably compromised under the confinement and cruel training practices that are inherent in traveling circuses. Wild, stressed animals in close quarters with the public has proven to be a public safety hazard, with escaped animals both maiming and even killing members of the public, including children. It is also estimated that around 12% of Asian and 2% of African elephants in North America have tuberculosis (TB), a disease transmissible from elephants to humans.

Every time we allow a majestic wild animal to be reduced to a cheap circus trick, we are not just turning a blind eye to cruelty, we are advancing the belief that it is acceptable to be inhumane and setting a poor example for our children. Simply put, animal acts in circuses are antiquated and belong in the past. Entertaining contemporary circuses like Cirque du Soleil prove that the show will go on without abused animals. Cirque du Soleil now has 19 shows in 271 cities, generating an estimated $810 million a year.

Over 20 countries around the world have adopted national legislation prohibiting or restricting the use of wild and exotic animals in circuses, with hundreds of local bans in place worldwide ? over 200 in the UK, and hundreds in Europe and South America, as well as Asia. The time is now to act! Please follow the will of your compassionate constituents and be a leader in Congress to work toward protections for circus animals.

Thank you for your public service and I look forward to hearing from you on this important matter.


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