ANIMALS IN ENTERTAINMENT
From ANIMAL PEOPLE, April 1997:
Gini Barrett, formerly senior vice president of the
Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers’ Public
Affairs Coalition, has succeeded the retired Betty Denny
Smith as American Humane Association western regional
director, responsible for overseeing animal use in screen entertainment.
Barrett also serves on the Los Angeles City Animal
Regulation Commission, to which she was appointed in 1993.
“The use of live tigers and other undomesticated
animals in retail store promotions conducted by our company-operated
stores” is prohibited, EXXON has advised field
managers. EXXON intends to continue using tigers in TV
advertising, along with tiger balloons and people dressed as
tigers in live store promotions, a spokesperson said.
Despite selling a record number of tickets, the
Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo had a drop of 20,000 this
year in actual live attendance. Officials blame wet weather.
Demanding that the Interior Ministry of Spain
rescind or amend a law requiring post-bullfight veterinary
inspections to detect any horn-shaving or other tampering to
make the bulls less dangerous, the Federation of Bullfighting
Professionals bullfighters on March 4 agreed to suspend a
two-day strike during a two-month negotiation period.
Bullfight fans, especially tourists, have complained recently
that fighting bulls these days just aren’t dangerous enough to be
thrilling. The fighters respond that they consider getting gored
an occupational safety hazard, not actually part of the job.
Afro-American rodeo clown Leon Coffey is still
trying to shrug off a remark to the audience by fellow clown
Rick Chatman at the National Western Stock Show Rodeo in
Denver on Martin Luther King Day, about how Coffee should
have been better with a rope because his father and grandfather
purportedly both died at the end of one. “I’m from Texas,”
Coffey recently told Gwen Forio of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
“They hung horse thieves there. For all I know, some of my
ancestors were horse thieves.” Chatman’s remark drew a
rebuke from Denver mayor Wellington Webb, who is also
Afro-American. The controversy heated up again when
announcer Hadley Barrett used an anti-Semitic phrase several
nights later to describe negotiations over the price of a horse.