But today I'm making an exception.
Animal Cruelty, in all its forms, is one of the problems I despise most in this world. Like child abuse, I don't feel there's any excuse for a person to lord their control over another creature who's unable to speak up for themselves.
Sadly, there are a lot of instances we're never made aware of & can do nothing to help fight . . . this is one we can -- and it costs nothing more than a tweet, or a blog post, or a forwarded email.
Tony is a 10 year old tiger who has spent every day of his life stuck in a small cage outside a truck stop in Louisiana.
It's not a wildlife sanctuary.
It's not a zoo.
It's a cage at a truck stop.
Imagine forcing a child to live 10 years of their life in an area no larger than a playpen. All so someone can use them as a sideshow attraction to earn money.
Big Cat Rescue in Tampa has offered to give Tony a home where he can live the second half of his life in peace & quiet. But of course, the owner wants nothing to do with that, because he's too busy exploiting the tiger for his own gain.
Every year or so, he applies for a new permit to keep an exotic wild animal in a public area . . . and inexplicably every year or so, that permit is renewed. It's renewed, because not enough people are aware of what's going on. There hasn't been enough public pressure, fighting for the rights of the one who doesn't have a say in all this.
The reason I'm mentioning this here is because I've seen what this community can do when it puts its mind to it. I've seen it support debut authors to wonderful starting sales. I've seen it rally around sick and hurting members of the community. I've seen it take on unethical magazine editors and shady literary agencies.
I don't expect Tony's cause to become a huge concern plastered on everyone's blogs, but if even a few of you are moved enough by his situation to post about his story or tweet about his website, then Tony's situation is brought to the attention of a few more people than yesterday. And hopefully tomorrow, those people will spread it on to a few more people . . . and so on and so forth.
And maybe one day, Tony will get his freedom.
Maybe one day he'll get to enjoy what it's like to lay in the grass and hear the sounds of other tigers nearby.
Maybe one day, Tony will get to know what it feels like to be a tiger.