Zoological parks have been an American standard for generations.
Since the time of the World Fair, Americans have gone to zoos to see and learn about exotic animals.
But zoos may be in danger—and here’s the depressing reason why.
A Liberal Vendetta
Animal rights activists have been pushing to ban and defund zoos, claiming the cruelty in keeping animals in cages and not out in the wild.
In fact, even just recently, PETA petitioned Nabisco to remove the circus animals pictured in cages on their infamous animal crackers box.
The cookies, launched in 1902, no longer features “cruel” cages on their box.
And PETA is continuing their barrage against zoos, frequently posting graphic information and pictures of caged animals living in terrible conditions.
Zoos: Not Just for Kids
But zoos are a wonderful place for kids to learn about animals of all kinds.
Almost every major city nationwide has a zoo of some sort.
At the National Zoo in Washington, DC, you can see exotic animals not found anywhere else in the United States.
The Smithsonian National Zoo has several pandas, as well as elephants, orangutan’s, and even electric eels.
There are also great activities for small children such as a petting zoo and learning center, and educational centers for adults that show documentaries and more.
The San Diego Zoo is another zoo that promotes education for all ages, and the Virginia Safari Park offers the unique opportunity for tourists to see animals in a natural habitat.
The Smithsonian National Zoo
The Smithsonian National Zoo does it right.
They choose to educate rather than push any social agendas.
While they do promote taking care of the planet and animals, they do so by encouraging recycling and donating to their programs.
At the Smithsonian Zoo, people of every age can find something to enjoy.
The zoo has gift shops, themed restaurants, interactive exhibits and more for children and families both old and young.
A favorite part of a recent trip was the seals exhibit and accompanying show.
The zookeeper worked with the seals to do tricks and even interact with visitors through a glass window.
The San Diego Zoo
The San Diego Zoo is one of the largest in the country.
It features every animal from Grizzly bears and camels, to giant pandas and giraffes.
But the zoo also pushes educational resources.
Recently, the zoo published a book for a sick child with Leukemia.
The child, now fully recovered, wrote an inspirational letter to a 5-year-old sick orangutan.
The book was published to tell an inspirational story of the child and the orangutan.
The zoo will soon publish more books to encourage leadership and compassion.
The zoo also teaches about respecting animals and caring for them in the zoo.
Virginia Safari Park
The Virginia Safari Park in Natural Bridge, VA, is a unique zoo experience like none other.
At Safari Park, you can drive your car through the 180- acre property where the animals are free to roam—or you can walk through a covered walkway and interact with the animals up close.
In fact, their website claims that animal interaction is their focus.
It is now the region’s top attraction, and only a few miles away from the Natural Bridge itself.
Why Zoos Are Still Important
The fun part about going to the zoo is not just seeing the animals, but seeing how they interact with people and what their personalities are like.
Activists argue that it’s cruel to keep these creatures in cages—but oftentimes, they are safer that way.
Many zoos are rehabilitation centers for animals, and many animals do not survive in the wild, especially the young.
The ironic fact about zoos is that they protect the animals—not enslave them like activist groups claim.
What are some of your favorite memories of going to the zoo?
Tell us in the comments section below!