NYC Council is at it again.
This time, they are considering an ordinance that will ‘prohibit the display or exhibition of many wild or exotic animals, with exceptions for accredited zoos, research facilities, religious ceremonies or celebrations, and educational or conservation-related programs or presentations.”
Clearly, the ordinance, if passed, would shutter all circuses that include exhibitions of wild or exotic animals, but it could also prohibit television programs filmed in NYC that display these animals.
The New York legislation was first introduced about a decade ago by Councilwoman Rosie Mendez, a Manhattan Democrat. Another Manhattan Democrat, Councilman Corey Johnson, recently joined in, saying that “trucking wild animals in and out of the city strictly for entertainment purposes is not a humane way to be treating them.”
A hearing on the proposed ordinance (Int. No. 1233) will be held by the Council’s Committee on Health on Oct. 20. Councilman Johnson serves as the Chairman of that committee.
Notably, Johnson was co-sponsor of the pet store sourcing ban that has been discussed numerous times, including recent blogs: Pet Stores Under Attack-Mandatory Sterilization Preempted by State Law ; Pet Stores Under Attack-Pet stores do not contribute to local overpopulation ; Pet stores under attack-sourcing bans violate the Supremacy Clause ; Pet Stores Under Attack-Continued: Shelters, Rescues and Pet Stores sell the same product – dogs and cats ; Pet Stores Under Attack-Continued: The New York City Pet Store Law Violates the Commerce Clause ; Pet Stores Under Attack.
Not surprisingly, the animal rights “nonprofits” NYCLASS and HSUS support the ban.
Circuses and related associations, including Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus and the Circus Fans Association of America (CFAA), are opposed to the ban. As Feld Entertainment (parent of Ringling Bros.) explains on their website:
Through the circus, every year hundreds of thousands of children are exposed to magical experiences with lions, camels, and other exotic animals like nowhere else. Help us stop this bill and save the circus for generations of families to come. Don’t let animal extremists end a 146 year family tradition.
If you want your voice heard, you should testify at the hearing on October 20, 2016 at 10 am located at Council Chambers, City Hall, 250 Broadway, New York, NY 10007.