Alligator Wrestling For Entertainment Needs To Stop

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Sponsor: The Rainforest Site

Help put a stop to the roadside entertainment industry's abuse of alligators.


Far before Europeans made their way to America, the Seminole Native Americans utilized specialized skills to hunt and capture alligators in order to survive in the depths of Florida’s swamp land.

But after a while, the people who would eventually colonize America realized they could use the allure of both Native Americans and alligators together to begin the roadside attraction of alligator wrestling [3].

The industry took off in the 1920's [1] and turned an important part of Seminole culture into an entertainment show.

These shows are not only dangerous for the people involved, but they also blatantly exploit alligators for the sole purpose of making money based on shock value.

With a bite force of nearly 3,000 pounds, alligators have easily one of the most powerful bites out of any animal on the planet [4], making them far too dangerous for people to provoke on purpose. Growing up to 15 feet long, and weighing around 500 pounds, these predators are purposefully built hunters that have no issue attacking anyone and anything that gets too close, especially people who want to turn the animals into a spectacle.

The giant reptiles are dragged into a ring by their tails, and are provoked in various ways to make them open their mouths in anger [2], all for the sake of 'a better show.' Alligators are wild animals and apex predators, and deserve to live in the wild, not be abused for profit or held in captivity.

Help us put a stop to the use of these reptiles for entertainment and allow them to remain free in their native habitats.

[1] New York Times (August 9, 1998) From Alligator Wrestlers, An Education. Retrieved on August 7, 2017. http://www.nytimes.com/1998/08/09/us/from-alligator-wrestlers-an-education.html

[2] Care2 Petitions (2016) End Alligator Wrestling In State Of Florida. Retrieved on August 8, 2017. http://www.thepetitionsite.com/906/272/133/end-alligator-wrestling-in-state-of-florida/

[3] Koerth-Baker, M. (March 18, 2009) A Concise History Of Alligator Wrestling. Retrieved on August 7, 2017. http://boingboing.net/2009/04/18/a-concise-history-of.html

[4] Zool, J. (2004) Comparison Of Bite Force Performance Between Long-Term Captive and Wild American Alligators. Retrieved on August 9, 2017. http://www.st.alligatorfarm.com/images/Research/Erickson%20et%20al.%202004.pdf

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The Petition:

To the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Florida Senate Committee on Environmental Preservation and Conservation,

Alligator wrestling for the sole purpose of providing a roadside attraction to lure in tourists and make money is a practice that should have been banned decades ago.

Not only does this industry seek to exploit alligators for profit, but it also takes away from the Seminole Native American's culture by turning a people’s means of tradition into a sideshow.

Both humans and alligators alike suffer because of alligator wresting.

The "sport" is extremely dangerous, and many of the wrestlers are bitten or attacked on a far too regular basis, on top of the fact that the animals themselves are being held captive for the sole purpose of being abused to provide a show.

Alligators should not have to continue in their suffering because of people trying to make a quick dollar, and the Seminole culture should not be forced to be looked at in a negative light because of the entertainment industry.

Please come together to ban the practice from roadside attractions and other places who seek to simply exploit alligators and Native American culture for their own profit.

The animals deserve to be free.

Sincerely,

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