Salinas, Calif. — SHARK is suing the California Rodeo Salinas – the largest rodeo in California and one of the largest rodeos in the U.S. – for failing to report animal injuries to the state veterinary medical board, as required under California law.
“California law requires the reporting of rodeo animal injuries,” said Steve Hindi, founder and president of SHARK. “The intent was to make rodeos transparent. Instead, the law has not been enforced, but rather, manipulated to make rodeos appear harmless."
Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) filed the suit (12-17-14) in Monterey County Superior Court on behalf of SHARK (SHowing Animals Respect and Kindness). Also named as a defendant is California Rodeo Salinas head veterinarian Tim Eastman.
Mike Turzai, Majority Leader of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, was given a large donation from a political action committee (PAC) three days before a bill that PAC was against was supposed to be voted on. Mr. Turzai then used his power to fulfill the wishes of that PAC; the legislation was not voted on and it died.
We contend that this exchange of money for legislative action violated section §1103 (c) of the Public Official and Employee Ethics Act. On November 12, 2014 SHARK President Steve Hindi Filed an Ethics Complaint. Read more below:
On August 7, 2014, SHowing Animals Respect and Kindness (SHARK) received an anonymous letter informing us that United States Senator Jim Inhofe, Republican of Oklahoma, was to have a live pigeon shoot as part of his fundraising event on September 5, 2014, at the Quartz Mountain Lodge in Lone Wolf, Oklahoma. The fundraiser was to support the "Friends of Jim Inhofe and the Fund For A Conservative Future."
Forget the myth of rodeos as all-American sport. Modern rodeos are cruel and deadly for animals. Traditional ranch work has been perverted into a spectacle of animal abuse disguised as "western tradition." Today's rodeos bear little resemblance to ranch work where care was taken to not injure animals. Modern rodeos are nothing more than western-themed circuses with contestants wearing John Wayne costumes and racing against the clock in a cruel spectacle for cash prizes all to sell sugar water, alcohol, and automobiles to the fans. And it's the animals who pay the price, from being electrically prodded to make horses and bulls appear wild to the countless injuries animals suffer from contestants who only care about beating the clock and winning cash before moving on to the next rodeo in the next city.
Anyone with a heart knows it's wrong to clothesline a baby animal, body slam it to the ground, tie its legs so it can’t move, and drag it by the neck. If this were done to a puppy or kitten, the offender would understandably be charged with a crime, and likely be jailed. In rodeos, however, it's called calf roping, and supporters claim it’s a sport. But the abuse of baby cows is just one of rodeo’s cruelties. Read further and watch some of SHARK's video proof from years of rodeo investigations.
Malheur County Update!
Click here to read about the final settlement regarding Steve Hindi's illegal traffic stop following the Big Loop Rodeo.
In 2012, we video-documented cruel acts of "horse tripping" (where rodeo riders rope horses around their legs, which brings them crashing to the ground) at the Big Loop Rodeo in Jordan Valley, Oregon. The video of this animal abuse had more than 200,000 views, and it sparked a movement in the Oregon Legislature to ban horse tripping. You can watch that video here: