The Circus Was In Town

Yesterday we went to the circus at the Arrowhead Pond Honda Center.

I expected to possibly see some PETA-like protesters there, but no one was picketing in front of the elephants. They also had tigers and zebras, horses and dogs, but you couldn’t really see them. Only the elephants were on total display in the parking lot.

It might make me sound like a person that doesn’t care about animal rights, but we really enoyed the show. This is our third year in a row going to Ringling Bros. and I can forsee many trips in the future when they are in town.

Some people won’t see the circus on account of what they see as the subjugation of animals. They don’t want to give their money to an institution that has a history of animal cruelty, or indifference, depending on who you talk to. But really, hasn’t the human race always subjugated animals? Where would we be if we had never captured and trained horses for agricultural and travel use?

Although I have to say that on some level, it bothers me to see some of the animals performing tricks on cue, I really do feel that overall they have a fairly cushy life. I think that the trainers truly care for their animals. Either that, or I am a total sucker for the circus PR machine.

The only bad thing I have to say is that it should be a crime to try and charge twenty (!) dollars for a regular sized bag of cotton candy just because you attach a three dollar hat to it. And refuse to sell anyone just the candy without the hat.

8 Comments so far

  1. Michael Doss (unregistered) on July 30th, 2007 @ 11:00 pm

    As a vegetarian and someone who considers PETA “not too bad” a group, I pretty much just avoid the circus because it smells bad and it’s kinda creepy to me.


  2. Gina (unregistered) on July 31st, 2007 @ 8:27 am

    Unless you are right next to the animals, of course, it doesn’t smell like anything. Just whatever the Honda Center smells like, and maybe food.

    And creepy? Is it the clowns? There is nothing remotely creepy about Ringling Bros. It is good family entertainment that everyone from grandma to grandson can watch together.

    I don’t pay good money to see things that smell bad and are creepy, I assure you.


  3. Gina (unregistered) on July 31st, 2007 @ 8:29 am

    And I don’t necessarily have anything against PETA, I just think that sometimes they direct their energies in the wrong places.


  4. Michael Doss (unregistered) on July 31st, 2007 @ 2:45 pm

    I think it’s the pseudo-Vaudeville aspect of the whole thing – like they’ve got something amazing that we’ve never seen before, and the rest of us are supposed to gasp in awe at animals and acrobats. It all seems very “fake” to me, I’m almost embarrassed for the performers.

    I may be the only person in the world that feels this way – I just don’t like the circus, at all.


  5. Jon (unregistered) on July 31st, 2007 @ 3:44 pm

    Ringling Bros. has a pretty clean track record on it’s animal care these days… of course it’s a far cry from Animal Kingdom at DisneyWorld which is actually PETA approved (believe it or not).

    The Circus in general has never really appealed to me. Even the more legitimate versions of it (such as Ringling Bros) seem seedy.


  6. Gina (unregistered) on August 1st, 2007 @ 9:16 am

    All right, when was the last time either of you was even AT a circus?

    Are you speaking about suspicions you are harboring way back from “Dumbo” or are you speaking of something you have actually witnessed recently with your own eyes?

    I mean, I never thought I would be here defending the damn circus, but really. I don’t think of going to Ringling Bros. any differently than I think of going to Cirque Du Soleil, which I have also seen a few times.


  7. Michael Doss (unregistered) on August 1st, 2007 @ 11:50 am

    I went to a Ringling Bros. circus about 10 years ago. I wasn’t impressed.

    I think they probably have a fairly clean record goes, in terms of animal rights, especially since they’re watched so closely – they the PETA types would disagree since they’re against animals being “used” at all to perform, no matter how well they’re treated.

    My main circus issues aren’t animal related – I just don’t like it.


  8. Jon (unregistered) on August 1st, 2007 @ 2:42 pm

    Last time I was at the circus was also about 10 years ago – it blew. For the record, I don’t care for Cirque Du Soleil either. Le Yuky!

    Actually, most Vegas (or Vegas-style-burlesque) vaudevillian variety shows irritate me. Follies Bergere and Thunder From Down Under are also perfectly boring – proving that even nudity and liquor in a glitzy setting can’t saving the stale format.



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