One of the ways you can help Action for Animals with our anti-Ringling Bros Circus campaign is to write a letter to the editor of the Austin American-Statesman and the Austin Chronicle today about why you are not going to the circus. Here’s how:
- Visit the Austin Chronicle’s site and the Austin American-Statesman’s site. Fill out the required fields including your name and phone number. If your letter is being considered then you might get a robo-call asking you to call back and verify your letter. You must call back or your letter will not be published. The Austin American-Statesman has a FAQ here about their process.
- Please be brief in your letter-to-the-editor. You have 1000 characters with the Austin American-Statesman so get to the point. Be ruthless in editing your letter.
- Do not repeat what Ringling Bros says about how they treat animals. Example: “Ringling Bros says they treat their animals well.” If you do this then you are just repeating Ringling’s sound bite again. Instead, write this: “Ringling Bros Circus agreed to pay a $240,000 fine in 2011 for abusing their animals. That’s the biggest fine any circus has ever paid due to their abuse of animals.”
- Be nice and respectful in your letter to ensure that it is printed. If you are a jerk then your letter may not be printed. Also, we’re trying to change minds so make it easier for people to listen by being nice.
- Do not make unsubstantiated claims. Your letter may not be published and you could get sued.
- Making yourself into a real person makes it easier for readers to related to you. For example, you can write: “As a mother of two kids, my husband and I will not go to circuses that use animals because we do not want our kids to think that it’s ok to use animals for entertainment.” Or, “My husband and I know about abuse to animals in circuses so we will not be taking our kids to the Ringling Bros Circus.” You can also say: “As a longtime Austinite, I do not welcome any business that abuses animals into this city. That is why I will not be going to Ringling Bros Circus next week.”
- Use facts to back up your claim about animal abuse in circuses. Here are several sites where you can do research about animal abuse in circuses.
- Mother Jones – Cruelest Show on Earth
- The Washington Post – PETA, Ringling Bros. at odds over the treatment of baby circus elephants
Animal Rights and Welfare Sites
OK, now go write your letter.