Animal Defenders International


Animal Defenders International

Celebrities join forces to back TEAPSPA, the federal circus bill

Posted: 3 July 2019. Updated: 3 July 2019


Actors, directors, and musicians are backing a bill to end the suffering of wild and exotic animals in traveling shows, which was showcased with a livestream launch event in Congress on May 21.

Sponsored by Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ) and David Schweikert (R-AZ), the Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act (TEAPSPA; HR2863) is being championed by Animal Defenders International, which has exposed suffering in US circuses over many years and provided evidence to support the bipartisan bill.

The growing list of celebrities lending their support to the campaign includes Oscar-nominated actor Joaquin Phoenix, who said: “The way animals are treated as mere objects of entertainment, beaten and bullied into performing circus acts, is disgraceful. Please help them today. Join me in backing Animal Defenders International’s call for a ban on wild animal circus acts throughout the United States.”

Kal Penn, star of “Designated Survivor,” “Big Bang Theory,” and “Harold & Kumar” franchise, said: “It’s time to put the days of animal cruelty in the name of entertainment behind us. As we continue to learn of the extent to which lions, tigers, elephants, and other wild animals are needlessly suffering at the hands of the circus industry, we must act. I applaud the advocates supporting the bipartisan Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act and urge you to as well.”

Oscar-nominated actor James Cromwell: “There is nothing natural about the life of a circus animal. These majestic wild creatures deserve lives that are free from pain and suffering, and together we can make it happen. Join me in supporting Animal Defenders International and the Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act.”

Comedian and Golden Globes host Ricky Gervais: “Animals have their spirits broken, beaten out of them, in order to entertain humans in circuses. It is heartbreakingly cruel and humiliating, it belongs to our ignorant past. TEAPSPA will bring an end to this suffering. That’s why I support it. Join me and give performing animals their freedom.”

Comedian and “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” star Rachel Bloom: “A life of confinement and abuse is sheer hell for animals in the circus. I’d like to see this terrible practice outlawed - that’s why I fully support Animal Defenders International and the federal bill to ban traveling wild animal acts.”

Quotes by other supporting celebrities, among them Danny Boyle, Eric Roberts and Ed Asner, can be found here.

© Animal Defenders International 2019