Holiday giants Thomas Cook are to scrap all trips to theme parks where killer whales are kept captive. The UK’s biggest tour operators said they made the decision after customer feedback and evidence from animal welfare experts. From next summer, they will no longer send customers to SeaWorld in Florida and Loro Parque in Tenerife. Both venues are popular with UK holidaymakers – Thomas Cook currently sell more than 10,000 day trips a year to SeaWorld Orlando and have sold 40,000 tickets to Loro Parque so far this year. The announcement comes 18 months after the firm launched a review of all 100 animal-related attractions included in their package holidays. Since then, 49 venues have been audited to ensure they meet animal welfare standards set by travel body ABTA. It resulted in 29 destinations being removed from sale. SeaWorld Orlando failed initial checks carried out earlier this year. There were also issues raised with Loro Parque. But both later passed after … [Read more...] about Thomas Cook scrap Florida and Tenerife theme park trips in animal rights move
Animal rights controversies
TODAY is the 50th anniversary of the assassination of the iconic civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr. The Baptist minister was a key player in the American civil rights movement from the mid-1950s until his assassination in 1968. Who was Martin Luther King Jr? Born on January 15, 1929, Martin Luther King Jr was a social activist who sought equality and human rights for African Americans, the socially and economically disadvantaged and victims of injustice. He advocated peaceful protest and was the driving force behind both the Montgomery Bus Boycott and the 1963 March on Washington. The March actually helped bring about such landmark legislation as the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 and is honoured each year on Martin Luther King Jr Day, which has been a federal holiday in the USA since 1986. What was Martin Luther King Jr’s background? Martin Luther King Jr was born in Atlanta, Georgia and was the second child of … [Read more...] about Where was Martin Luther King assassinated, who was the civil rights activist and what are some of his most memorable quotes?
By Yereth Rosen ANCHORAGE, Ala. (Reuters) – The world’s most famous dog race is mired in a doping scandal, under pressure from animal-rights activists and coping with a drop in revenue. Still, the show will go on: Alaska’s Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race starts on Saturday. Sixty-seven mushers and their dog teams are due to gather in Anchorage for the ceremonial start of the 1,000-mile race. After what will likely be a leisurely 11-mile trot through Alaska’s biggest city, timed competition begins on Sunday in Willow, an 80-mile drive north. The winner is expected in Nome, a Gold Rush town on the Bering Sea, eight days later. The race is a tribute to a life line of mushers and dogs who carried supplies to remote outposts in the early days of Alaska’s non-aboriginal settlements. The most famous of those missions was in 1925, when a relay of teams completed a “Serum Run” delivering a supply of antitoxin to Nome for children stricken by a diphtheria … [Read more...] about Alaska’s renowned Iditarod race, mired in controversy, to start Saturday
Morrissey has caused a stushie by criticising Nicola Sturgeon from the stage of his Glasgow gig at the weekend. But he has never been short of a controversial opinion or two. On vegetarianism No one who has heard The Smiths’ Meat is Murder could be in any doubt about Morrissey’s views on eating meat, but he attracted controversy when he drew a parallel between eating meat and child abuse. “It’s the same thing. I really feel quite smug about mad cow disease and foot and mouth and so forth, and I just think, Well, what do you expect? People have been saying it for years.” Loading article content On the Chinese Morrissey's support for animal rights also led to controversy in 2010. "Did you see the thing on the news about their treatment of animals and animal welfare?” he said. “Absolutely horrific. You can't help but feel that the Chinese are a subspecies." On royalty The cover of Morrissey’s latest album, Low in High School, … [Read more...] about He said what? Morrissey’s most controversial opinions
Thick smoke fills the cobbled streets of San Bartolome de Pinares as the clip-clop of galloping hooves edges ever closer to a bonfire crackling nearby. Suddenly a horse and its rider burst through the flames as the mysterious age-old festival of Las Luminarias kicks off in this village nestled deep in snow-capped mountains near Madrid. Some 130 horses follow suit, ridden by young and old alike, with couples, parents and children taking part in the annual ritual village historians say is unique in Spain. READ ALSO Blessed are the animals: Madrid church welcomes four-legged friends The event may have originated as a pagan ritual practised by the Celts who lived in this area of Castilla y Leon more than 1,000 BC, says Salvador Saez, a 64-year-old retired teacher from the village who has researched the festival. Fire -- the great purifier -- was thought to protect animals from diseases and give their riders fertility. The ritual could have been "christianised" … [Read more...] about IN PICS: Horses ‘purified’ with fire in controversial Spanish ritual