Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Circus, Kids, and Elephants…

Ringling Brothers Circus Torres Family

Image via Wikipedia

The NFO had the great idea of taking the kids to the Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus when it was in town in March.

They loved it and it was priceless watching them (more than the show) as their mouths were agape and eyes wide open watching the acrobatics, animals, and more.

As the NFO said, “it’s something you need to do with your kids at least once.”

Those emotions were counter-balanced by two other facts that were bouncing around in my head during the show, preventing me from fully enjoying the experience.

The first, ok this is light-hearted, is “how do I feel about being a customer at an event where the founder said, ‘There’s a sucker born every minute?’”Circus Visit with kids on march 27, 2011

But, the real qualms I had were from a leaflet we received as we walked in from the folks at PETA, who had some pretty graphic literature about the maltreatment of the animals, particularly the elephants.

It made me feel ashamed.

Now, it’s tough to stop a family of 5 going to the circus at the door, but if they are looking to get me to think twice before we go again, they’ve done it.

Obviously, the argument is that showing the kids the animals will enhance their appreciation, but do the “ends justify the means?”

Outside of the animal issue, the show was great. They actually focus much more on human acts a la Cirque du Soleil and they are quite entertaining and exciting. I loved the Circling Torres brothers in the iron globe on their motorcycles. How do you ever decide that that’s what you want to do for a living?

The kids, however, are probably going to remember this one for a long time. So, for that, for now, qualms aside (if only temporarily), it’s a special day in our family history.

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