I am a resident of Wilmette and I would like to voice my concern for the upcoming Kelly Miller Circus that will be taking place in Wilmette and is sponsored by the District 39 Foundation.
The Kelly Miller Circus includes tigers and elephants. I feel that our village and school district should not be associated with the shameful inhumane care and treatment of animals in circuses.
The Village Board who approved the permit and the District 39 Foundation who hired the circus have set a horrible example for the children.
A simple Google search will provide more than enough information on the cruelty that circus animals endure. Standard circus industry practice is to use bull hooks and other objects to poke, prod, strike, shock, and hit animals in order to "train" them all for a few moments of human entertainment.
Elephants in the wild don't eagerly stand on their heads and tigers don't naturally jump through hoops of fire. They don't perform these and other difficult tricks because they want to; they perform them because they're afraid of what will happen if they don't.
Animals in circuses spend about 11 months of the year traveling. Constant travel means that animals are confined to boxcars, trailers, or trucks for days at a time in extremely hot and cold weather, often without access to basic necessities such as food, water, and veterinary care.
It is remarkable to me that a foundation that is linked to a school district that influences thousands of kids is essentially endorsing animal cruelty.
Can't they think of a better way to raise money? This is the worst kind of message to send to our children.
The District 39 Foundation has been hiring the circus since 2002 but it is now 2012. There are so many other positive events that could be considered.
Having a circus at a school or anywhere in our community is a bad lesson for kids. We need to teach our children to respect animals and treat them humanely.
Our kids should not grow up thinking this is ok.
Thank you for your time,