Feld Entertainment, the parent company to Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus, is looking for a new PR firm. The budget is $30,000 per month.
However, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), is making it known to firms looking to win the business that they will be in a world of pain if they take on the account.
The organization sent out a blast email to PR firms today. PRNewser has obtained a copy of the letter from 5WPR CEO Ronn Torossian, who was among the PR agency executives to receive it.
In the letter, PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman says, “Ringling Bros. is a public relations nightmare waiting to happen.”
We’ve posted a full copy of the letter after the jump.
From: David Perle
Sent: Thursday, May 13, 2010 1:45 PM
To: Ronn Torossian
Subject: PETA to PR Firms: Represent Ringling and You Run a Risk
Any public relations firm that is considering picking up the account Feld Entertainment-the parent company of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus-may think again after seeing PETA’s new full-page ad in this week’s edition of PR News. The ad features a photo of a baby elephant being roped around all four legs and pulled to the ground by bullhook-wielding trainers. The photo was taken by a former Ringling employee. The ad reads, “Represent Ringling: Risk Your Reputation. No Amount of PR Can Make Beating Baby Elephants Sound Good.” Feld Entertainment is currently advertising for a new public relations firm.
“Ringling Bros. is a public relations nightmare waiting to happen,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “There’s not a PR team in the world that is slick enough to sell the beating of baby elephants, the whipping of tigers, and the use of chains, bullhooks, and electric prods on animalsâ€”all for the sake of a few cheap tricks.”
Before firms consider Ringling’s offer, they should view the dozens of recently released photos taken inside Ringling’s Florida training center by a veteran elephant handler. The photos expose how baby elephants are dragged away from their mothers, slammed to the ground, gouged with steel-tipped bullhooks, and shocked with electric prods. These fear-based and abusive training methods have contributed to the deaths of at least two baby elephants: One fled his bullhook-wielding trainer and drowned in a pond, and the other broke both hind legs after falling from a training pedestal. Other baby elephants have also died at Ringling.
In light of the evidence documenting the routine abuse of animals at Ringling, PETA has called on the U.S. Department of Agriculture to revoke Ringling’s exhibitor’s license.
If you have any questions about this information, I can be reached by e-mail or at 202-483-7382, extension 2194.
For more information, please visit PETA’s Web site RinglingBeatsAnimals.com.
Senior Media Coordinator