This past weekend, the circus came to town. As a kid I loved the circus, even into high school. I even thought that I would run away and join the circus. I wanted to be an acrobat… but I have never been a huge fan of the animal acts. As I got older and I realized the horrific animal abuses that many circus animals suffer, most especially the elephants. Because of that I won’t take my children. I will not support it.
This got me thinking about the other ways that animals amaze us, suffer for us, are helped by us, sometimes hurt us, and then, what are responsibilities to them?
Do we have a responsibility to do our best to not cause them to suffer for our own gain?
Do we have a responsibility to ensure their survival?
Do we have a responsibility to the animals that might feed us to ensure their health, well-being, and populations?
Should wild animals be kept captive in less than ideal conditions, even if they are better than before?
Where might we draw the line in determining these responsibilities? What are your personal beliefs about animal rights?