Many of you might have seen that a chimpanzee named Billy was on the show Chelsea Lately last week. Billy was seen rocking and showing his top teeth—a clear sign of distress. The show said they would have Billy back the next night, and despite hearing from thousands of people to please not air Billy again, they went ahead with the segment anyway.
We want to continue to put pressure on the show and on Chelsea Handler, the host of the show. Please send a polite letter to her, c/o Tom Brunelle, letting her know that chimps like Billy should not be used in entertainment. Not only are there numerous welfare concerns, but seeing chimpanzees alongside humans perpetuates the pet trade. Studies also show that since chimpanzees are so prevalent in media, people aren’t aware of their endangered status. Please speak up for Billy and all chimpanzees still used in entertainment and ask Chelsea to issue a mea culpa about Billy’s appearance and promise to never use apes on her production again.
You may send your letter to the Chelsea Handler c/o Tom Brunelle at email@example.com
Sample Letter to Chelsea Lately:
Dear Ms. Handler:
I was disappointed to hear that Chelsea Lately had Billy the chimpanzee on the show, and despite hearing from concerned advocates, aired a second appearance by Billy. You should know that great apes used in entertainment are torn away from their mothers as infants, often repeatedly beaten during training, and then discarded when they become too strong to be managed.
Using a chimpanzee for a cheap laugh sends the message that these amazing beings are simply props. Surely you are aware that chimpanzees are endangered species in critical need of protection?
Please make the compassionate decision to issue a mea culpa for airing Billy’s segments two nights in a row, and pledge to never exploit great apes for entertainment purposes again. Thank you for your consideration of my comments on this urgent matter.
[Your name here]
[Your city & state]
If you send an e-mail to Chelsea, please remember to BCC Eyes on Apes at EyesOnApes@ChimpsNW.org for tracking purposes. Thank you!