by MPD
Categories: Animals, Events, Film/TV.

We think it’s important that everyone — celebrity or otherwise — have a social cause they work to promote. For Lily Tomlin, that cause is protecting elephants.

Tomlin has a long history of working to free elephants from zoos, including participating in campaigns in Seattle, Los Angeles, and Dallas. To continue her activism, Tomlin will speak in support of the documentary Elephants and Man: A Litany of Tragedy at the Sunset Gower Studios in Hollywood on January 20, 2011

The film — which is produced by Voice for the Animals (VFTA) Foundation’s Melya Kaplan — examines the history of elephants in captivity and details the suffering and cruelty that subsequently occurs.

“Hopefully, this film will introduce and educate people to the barbaric and inhumane practice of keeping elephants captive in zoos,” Tomlin said, according to Broadway World. “Once most humans learn the truth about the cruelty and suffering we are causing these creatures, I believe they will find exhibiting them in zoos as morally unacceptable as I and many, many others do.”

Check out Part 1 of the documentary below and tell us what you think!

  • herwin

    isnt it so true !! and dont lets forget what Edison did to “Topsy” the elephant. In order to prove that the electric current from his competitors was lethal, this sick f@@@ck electrocuted this sweet elephant TOPSY . (Beside “topsy”, mr Edison electrocuted dozens of dogs and other elephants in smaller towns, frying “TOPSY” was for the big city…)
    To top it off, by a misunderstanding mr Edison can be found nowadays on many “famous vegetarians” list. which, to put it straight, he ISNT a veggie and never was a veggie by any long shot.
    mr Edison frys TOPSY the elephant on youtube :

  • georgina

    Very enlightening and sad documentary. The history between man and animals is that of man keeping animals subservient, which in my opinion is pathetic given that man can think, reason, create tools, and in short do anything he/she wants without the use and exploitation of animals.

    About Topsy, i have seen that video and it still sickens my stomach.

  • Gina SuuperG Stark

    Magnificent, majestic creatures. We should emulate them and learn from them rather than try to seek “dominion” over them. How do I obtain tickets for Ms. Tomlin’s presentation? Have you heard about the new film, “How I Became an Elephant?” I want to see that one too…about a 14 year old girl who is DOING something about the industrial level abuse of elephants in captivity. I am not a promoter for it – this is not spam. This is a cause/movement I am gaining more and more interest in and heartbreak over. Thank you for posting this. Peace, Gina

  • GenieV

    Frankly, it is absolutely reckless to associate elephants in zoos with the kind of ravaging that the animal has endured in its lifetime. Zoos today are not the zoos of yesterday and the care and treatment of elephants in zoos is better than many humans have in their lives. They get 24/7 health care, 24/7 dietary care, 24/7 exercise and 24/7 love and affection from their caretakers. Is it ideal, probably not, but there is no more wild out there people for elephants to roam freely. They are poached for their ivory, they are murdered because they stray too close to farms, they are abandoned because they are no longer useful. Put your energy toward helping elephants in their natural environments because without the important work and intervention of accredited zoos, these animals will become extinct in our lifetimes.

    • georgina

      No, it is not reckless or irresponsible because it is the truth. An animal in a zoo is still a caged animal. Besides, how do you know that elephants –or any other zoo animal for that matter– are not bought as babies from poachers?

      The best way to go about this situation and any situation that involves the many ways in which animals are exploited is through education. Only when people see the kind of suffering their actions cause on animals will they learn to leave animals alone. When the poacher realizes that once all elephants are gone they won’t be able to profit from their tusks anymore, and the kids who beg their parents to go to the zoo will stop begging.

      Education, and thanks to documents such as this one that is possible.

    • Mariana

      “They get 24/7 health care, 24/7 dietary care, 24/7 exercise and 24/7 love and affection from their caretakers.”

      CLEARLY you haven’t read any of the zoo records obtained through FOIA.

      “…without the important work and intervention of accredited zoos, these animals will become extinct in our lifetimes.”

      Exactly what is the important work and intervention that zoos are doing? This is an embarrassingly irresponsible statement. What EXACTLY is that work and intervention?

      Elephants have no problem proliferating in the wild. They know what to do. Habitat protection is the key to conservation. Zoos do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING for conservation efforts.

  • Frankie
  • Robyn Ely

    God Bless you Lily Tomlin

  • Thia Elle Tea Artemis

    It seems a bit gory to me, playing upon the very sick nature of humans that causes them to pay to see elephants in zoos, circuses, and at electrocutions. This video history claims to be educational and saving Billy et al, but really it is just more commercialism preying on the suffering that has gone before and continues unabated by it’s soon opening success. I saw no
    “all proceeds go to this or that Elephant Sanctuary”, or legislation, or stopping the culling of adults and transport and sale of young elephants into captivity in the first place. I won’t be paying to see this nor posting it’s Lily Tomlin talk either – but will continue volunteering at real sanctuaries and with real non-profits and WSPCAs et al doing real work to save still suffering live elephants, in captivity, and their wild habitats so that less will be taken from them.
    Thia Ellie Artemis
    Animal Answers International
    Pula Services

    • Jacek

      There is no reason for your cynicism. There are no proceeds from this film as it is for educational purposes only i.e not for profit.
      The only intended profit is to help spread the plight of all captive elephants.
      Nobody pays to see this film but if it so moves you then donate to any animal welfare group which pleases you.

  • Pingback: James Franco, Alec Baldwin, And More To Highlight Animal Activism « :: the latest in green gossip()