The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) recently agreed to pay (that’s right PAY) $9.3 million to Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus over unproven claims brought by the ASPCA that the Circus abused elephants.

Way back in 2000 the ASPCA sued the Circus claiming there was elephant abuse, a court dismissed the claim in 2001 but the ASPCA brought the complaint back in 2003, in 2009 a court cleared the Circus again.

Now clearly no one wants any form of animal abuse and I, for one, haven’t been to a circus with animals since I was about 5 (which was a very long time ago indeed).  I want to make sure that there are people and entities watching for potential mistreatment, but I also want the to make reasonable decisions about when to run to the courts.  I don’t know the back story here and don’t know if the ASPCA tried to talk to the Circus about their concerns etc., to bring about change without resorting to litigation – but I do know that $9.3 million dollars buys a heck of a lot of food and veterinary care and could result in a whole lot of animals having a much better life.

Thanks for reading!

5 Responses to “Where Does Your Charitable Donation Go?”

  1. Joanne Morris

    Thanks for the insight it is a lot of money that could have done a lot of good things for needy animals.

  2. lweis

    I don’t know the back story either, but the positive work that could have been accomplished with those dollars is staggering.  They might have been hoping for high profile exposure and more resulting donations, but if that was the case it certainly backfired

  3. Jill

    It’s unfortunate that most of the general public doesn’t think twice about the elephants or lions, etc. when they go home after a fun day at the circus! Thanks for bringing up the topic. Hoping these animals are getting the food/supplies they need on a daily basis!!

  4. Jennifer Ashenfelter

    Great point–a terrible waste of money. Wouldn’t it be nice if Ringling Bros put that money back into the communities they visit to help animals?! Support local rescues and organizations who really need the assistance with dollars and time.