I am writing as a concerned citizen to expose the cruelty behind the Mountain State Fair, which [started] Friday in Western North Carolina. As a vegan and a volunteer with Brother Wolf Animal Rescue, I’m a huge animal lover, but state fairs are notorious for containing exploitative animal displays.
Just last month at the Missouri State Fair, tigers were forced to perform, appeared emaciated like “skeletons,” and some of the fair-goers described the tigers as being lethargic. Animals suffer immeasurably when they are forced to perform for human entertainment, and they live in a state of depression, fear and anxiety.
The exotic-animal shows display intelligent animals as nothing more than silly clowns. Because these tricks are not natural, trainers will sometimes beat the animals or deprive them of food in order to get the animals to perform tricks.
In addition, more often than not, kids grow tired of their goldfish, rabbit or iguana “prize,” and the animal is often abandoned.
Asheville is a progressive, compassionate city, and the Mountain State Fair doesn’t reflect our values. I urge the community to think about how they are voting with their money. If you see cruelty to animals at a state or county fair, you can file a cruelty-to-animals complaint.
— Michelle Neff