Elephant Protection Act is cause for celebration
Hats off to Gov. Andrew Cuomo for signing the Elephant Protection Act into law. The use of pachyderms in entertainment has long been a public concern. Caring for the world’s largest land mammal under present conditions is impossible without compromising the animals’ health and welfare. They are social creatures who live in family units where they care for one another, just as humans do.
Elephants roam 18 to 20 miles a day in their natural habitat. They graze in the grasslands and prefer to be near water holes. None of this is possible in entertainment venues. They suffer physical and emotional health problems. Confinement, torture and unhealthy conditions have led to a life of pain and suffering for these majestic creatures.
In the wild, elephants typically live to around 70 years. Their life span in the entertainment industry is far less!
This law comes only months after New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio signed legislation banning exotic animal acts. Earlier this year, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus packed up the big top for good. It said a drop in ticket sales due to public concern for animal welfare led to that decision. These are clear signs the public is against animal entertainment venues!
The signing of the Elephant Protection Act and the Ban on Exotic Animal Acts further endorses New York’s commitment to the humane treatment of animals, making New York a leader in progressive animal legislation. These victories will set a precedent for neighboring states, as well as the country.
Director, League of Humane Voters of Western New York, Tonawanda