Chapter III Section K: Abolish Zoos

The following proposals were put to a vote among Animal Rights Committee members on September 23, discussion occurred on the listserv, and final votes were tallied on September 29.

Quorum was achieved and the following three proposed amendments were approved by the majority on September 29 for new planks under GPUS platform Chapter III Section K (III. Ecological Sustainability K. Ethical Treatment of Animals).

Green Party Animal Rights Committee
Co-chair, Mary Lawrence, wellonwheels@hotmail.com
Co-chair, Craig Seeman, cseeman@optonline.net


III.K. Ethical Treatment of Animals:
10.
“Abolish public and private zoos, roadside zoos, and private collections of wild or exotic animals. Redirect funds invested in zoo conservation into restoration of natural habitats, e.g. anti-poaching initiatives and an end to habitat destruction. Transfer captive wild animals to the wild when feasible or provide genuine sanctuary to animals unable, through injury and other cause, to be returned to the wild and where their living conditions closely represent the animal’s natural habitat. Ban the importation and trade of wild or non-domesticated species as companion animals.”

7 thoughts on “Chapter III Section K: Abolish Zoos”

  1. “Transfer captive wild animals to the wild when feasible or provide genuine sanctuary to animals unable, through injury and other cause, to be returned to the wild and where their living conditions closely represent the animal’s natural habitat. ” – I think this part could be removed and keep this section centered on the policy, not the details of the implementation, which could go on and on, depending. Otherwise, this is a worthwhile addition to this section.

  2. I do not support complete abolition of public zoos. I think they CAN serve a positive purpose. I DO SUPPORT COMPLETE ABOLITION OF PRIVATE ZOOS.

    I would change the proposed amendment to read:

    ”Abolish all private zoos, roadside zoos, and private collections of wild or exotic animals. Increase public funds invested into restoration of natural habitats, e.g. anti-poaching initiatives and an end to habitat destruction. Prioritize the transfer of captive wild animals to the wild when feasible or provide genuine sanctuary to animals unable, through injury and other cause, to be returned to the wild and where their living conditions closely represent the animal’s natural habitat. Ban the importation and trade of wild or non-domesticated species as companion animals.”

    1. Seeking to act in accordance with ones values is not restricted to Greens sharing the 10 key values. Many do not. And especially the most politically distinctive for those who share it, Ecological Wisdom. “Human societies must function with the understanding that we are part of nature, not separate from nature. We must maintain an ecological balance and live within the ecological and resource limits of our communities and our planet.” The assertion of human separateness from nature is nowhere more prominent than in the application of flawed human solutions to the ecological damage done through indiscriminate looting. But given the species possession of symbolic recording of individual and collective experience, collective memory must be informed by the accumulated knowledge. And the ability to ask relevant questions. How many of the non-human animals held by the major zoological gardens in U. S. cities were born in in them? There is little known here except an attitude. That I may share the attitude expressed does not satisfy my respect for true knowledge. It may be that the loss is greater than the gain. Before we are ready to assert moral superiority, let us not confine a vivid knowledge of life forms to those who have the wealth to go on safari. All of my offspring shared the learning of and respect for the diversity of life in zoos. Good ones.

    1. Elie, what reply are you referring to? I have been monitoring the comments section of all of the proposals for spam, which we got quite a load of last time around. However, I have yet to delete any comments.

  3. Captivity for animals must be depressing for them. Eliminating zoos seems appropriate. I would probably vote ‘yes’. I am, however, concerned about the political viability of the proposal. Acquiring state power for the purpose of building a better society has to be a goal for the Green Party. I would like to see a long timeline attached to this and make it educational and aspirational, because people like taking their kids or grandkids to zoos. I am in favor of maintaining an artificial version of zoos such as dioramas or even functioning mechanical facsimiles of animals. If voters couldn’t bring themselves to accept the truth about zoos, we might injure our ability to gather support and votes. We have all heard the smears about how the Green New Deal intends to take away things that North Americans hold dear. I wonder if zoos would just get added to the list.

  4. Excellent proposal, and I would support it.
    As with many aspects of our current dysfunctional systems, the entertainment industry use of animals will need to undergo large scale transition. Therefore, one sentence that could be added to this would be noting that:
    For large zoos, we support transition to sanctuary status as an immediate step,-no longer accepting or importing new animals, and converting existing infrastructure to ethical wild life sanctuary including public oversight and review of the process.
    This dispells the notion that we are having things “taken away” from us or making unrealistic demands, while also serving as a realistic transition step, rather than just immediately going from thousands of zoos to zero.

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