Could New York put an end to the traveling circus?

For years there has been a growing movement to outlaw the use of wild and exotic animals in traveling circuses. Illinois was the first state to outlaw the practice, and now New Jersey has passed legislation that would essentially end the circus as we know it for millions of residents.

The Hill reports that New Jersey legislators passed a bill that would ban exotic animals from all fairs, festivals, carnivals and circuses within the state. The proposal now goes to Governor Christie to sign. As of now, there's no indication if he will turn the bill into a law or not.

In New York, Governor Cuomo has already taken steps to stop the use of exotic animals for entertainment.  In 2014 the state passed a law banning fairs from allowing people to come in contact with big cats like lions and tigers. The legislation put an end to the Dutchess County Fair's popular "touch a tiger" exhibit.

Many have been calling for New York to pass tougher legislation that would essentially put an end to circuses that use elephants and other exotic animals. Ringling Brothers announced last year that they would be closing down their circus after 146 years. Changing attitudes towards the use of animals for entertainment was cited as one of the reasons they decided to shut down.

What do you think? Should exotic animals be allowed to perform in New York? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below or on our Facebook page.