Breaking News! Santa Fe, New Mexico Bans Wild & Exotic Animal Acts In Circuses

Days after Alec Baldwin was featured highlighting the cruelty of animal circuses in a new PETA campaign in which he lent his voice to be that of an abused tiger who is separated from his mother, whipped, and trained to perform bizarre stunts, comes more news that wild and exotic animal acts are now officially banned from taking place in Santa Fe, New Mexico.


Yesterday, as per the Alberquerie Journal, the Santa Fe City Council and mayor voted 8-1 to pass an amendment to its animal welfare ordinance that would prevent wild and exotic animal acts within the city limits.

Circuses are still allowed but they are now prohibited from including any acts that feature elephants, tigers, lions, and bears in performances for entertainment purposes.

The amendment now makes exhibitions of wild or exotic animals performing tricks, giving rides, or participating “as accompaniments for the entertainment, amusement, or benefit of a live audience” illegal.

“Santa Feans demanded a more compassionate city, and Councilor Signe Lindell has heard them and delivered,” PETA Foundation Associate Director of Captive Animal Law Enforcement Rachel Mathews said in a statement. “Santa Fe now joins New York City, San Francisco, and other cities in banning exhibitors that profit from animal misery and PETA looks forward to a day when circuses and other businesses that beat, whip, and electrically shock animals are shunned at every corner of the country.”

Sounds good. But there is a down side that has many people calling the ban hypocritical.

Unfathomably, rodeos which are notoriously known for abusing and exploiting wild animals are not affected by the new amendment.

Sadly, the ban also does not apply to “commonly accepted domesticated” animals such as dogs and cats as well as pigs, cattle, sheep, goats, donkeys, and horses which are often forced to appear at fairs in addition to rodeos.

There is also a questionable exception that allows animal exhibitions if they are for educational purposes.

WAN appreciates the fact that Santa Fe is looking to enhance the welfare of animals. It is a step in the right direction. But only a step. Many more need to be taken and we look forward to a time when the exploitation of any animal for entertainment purposes is a thing of the past.

WAN does not condone the use of animals for entertainment purposes.

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