Written by PETA
Not content with the reams of newsprint that have already been dedicated to our Save the Sea Kittens campaign, we're going for a little more face time for our finned friends by asking Lance Bass, the former 'N Sync singer and "Dancing With the Stars" alum, to change his last name from "Bass" to "Sea Kitten." We hope Lance goes for it hook, line, 'N Sync-er. (Badump-bump.)
Yes, we know that "bass" can also refer to a long-necked guitar or a really big violin-like instrument, and it can also refer to a certain shoe company, but when most people hear the word "bass," they might think "large mouth." And while that’s nice on fish … we love you, Lance, and we have your back!
Lance, if you're reading this, please know that it was your friends at PETA who got most upset when judge Len Goodman called you "pigeon-toed." Don't even get us started on the disrespect that pigeons are forced to endure.
And bear in mind that prepubescent girls just love kittens. Can you say, "'N Sync reunion"?
Written by Alisa Mullins
Unless you're a die-hard Britney Spears fan and regular visitor to her Web site, you heard it here first: The top-secret stage design plans for Britney's upcoming "Circus" tour will include no live animals.
That's right, folks, in an "EXCLUSIVE: STAGE DESIGN ANNOUNCEMENT" (seriously, that's what it's called, all caps and everything), Britney's tour designer had the following to say:
"We've taken the idea of a traditional 'big-top circus' and given it a Britney Spears twist. This circus is unlike anything you've ever seen before. It's sexy, fun, explosive, and full of surprises. … While avoiding such traditional circus elements as live animals, we've created something innovative and exciting using contortionists, dancers, lighting, fire, and other special effects." [emphasis added]
Omigaw! If I were 12, I would so be there.
You may remember that Britney ran into trouble with PETA a couple of months ago when we learned that she had used elephants and lions in her "Circus" video. We shot her a letter asking her to leave animals out of her Circus tour and—lo and behold—our wish has been granted.
You guys remember how the BBC dropped coverage of Crufts, the UK's big dog show, right? After that, we asked USA Network to do the decent thing and follow suit by refusing to air the American Kennel Club's Westminster Dog Show.
Well, it seems that USA is determined to wring a few bucks out of the suffering and illness of dogs and will be airing Westminster as planned.
OK, USA, if that's the way you want to play it, we're not above doing an end run and going directly to your oxygen supply. That's right—we've written to USA's Westminster sponsors (LifeLock, TransUnion, Intuit, the CityKids Foundation, the Flex Belt, and Pedigree) and asked them to withdraw their support. Read our letter here.
We obviously can't count on either USA or the AKC to put honor before profit, but we hope that there are still a few businesses out there that will step up and help make a difference for dogs.
Written by Jeff Mackey
The buzz surrounding the photos of Michael Phelps paying more attention to the bong water than to the pool water makes this an appropriate time to run our own pot billboard, don't you think?
Michael recently admitted that he was, in fact, smoking reefer and apologized—but doesn't everyone know that the hazards of ingesting pot roast are perhaps even more worrying?
So here's our little contribution to liven up the debate:
No one knows if marijuana is addictive (although some people swear it is), but eating meat sure seems to be. Witness all the grownups who can't even contemplate "giving up meat" even when they are fat, impotent, and at risk for a heart attack. And these are the same people who say that they love animals but go right on causing them immense suffering.
Maybe Michael will see our billboard and abandon the pot roast too—or at least speak up for those other cute swimmers … the sea kittens! I can see it now …
Written by Christine Doré
Obviously, Veggie Love would have been the best Super Bowl commercial of all time. But because NBC rejected PETA's ad, we had to leave it off our list of the most appealing and most appalling commercials that aired during this year's game:
Bridgestone: In Bridgestone's Super Bowl entry, Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head are out for a country drive, swerving around a curvy mountain road. With Mrs. Potato Head busy screaming at Mr. Potato Head, he turns a blind corner and almost runs into a flock of sheep. Thankfully, Bridgestone's tires save the day (and the sheep!) and offer viewers a reminder that it's important to brake for animals. (This is a big deal: Every day, an estimated 1 million animals are killed on U.S. highways alone.)
Coca-Cola: This ad dazzled Super Bowl viewers with its CGI portrayal of ladybugs, grasshoppers, bumblebees, dragonflies, and other insects. An ad this beautiful showcases the advancements in CGI and animatronic technologies that have completely eliminated the need to use live animals in film, television, and advertising. Coca-Cola proves that you can put together a successful ad that makes no artistic compromises while still sending the important message that animal abuse is always wrong.
Sobe: Like Coca-Cola, Sobe used high-tech CGI technology (and absolutely no live animals) to depict lizards dancing with football players. Best of all, no Naomi Campbell this year (we may wish she was CGI, but, unfortunately, she and her furs are all-too-real).
Budweiser: Normally, we despise Budweiser's ads featuring Clydesdale horses (who needs a live mascot when there are so many creative alternatives?). But this year, Budweiser almost got on our good side. One of their Clydesdales falls in love with an enslaved circus horse. We're glad to see that Budweiser seems opposed to the exploitation of horses in circuses, but that leaves us a bit confused as to why they're OK with taking advantage of these animals in their own commercials.
Pedigree: We're glad Pedigree promotes adopting dogs from animal shelters (and not keeping exotic animals captive). It appears, though, that at least some of the exotic animals in the commercial are the real deal (as opposed to CGI). Since they clearly weren't filmed in their natural environment, Pedigree looks like one more company that doesn't practice what it preaches.
Doritos: Generally, Doritos' commercials are pretty funny, but one of their ads was completely spoiled by the presence of a capuchin monkey. All animals forced into show business are subjected to beatings and intensive confinement, and capuchin monkeys in particular are high-strung and often resort to self-mutilation in response to stress and boredom. Not funny. At all. Plus, I'm pretty bitter that this commercial depicted a woman's clothes flying off: I thought NBC didn't allow "sexy" ads? I guess this one just slipped by someone at NBC.
Castrol Oil: Without a doubt, "Castrol Oil: Edge Monkeys" wins the Worst of the Worst award for this year's ads. Castrol must not have gotten the memo that young chimpanzees used in the entertainment industry are ripped away from their mothers, beaten into submission, and discarded at filthy roadside zoos when they grow too large and strong to be controlled. Is anyone still laughing? Somehow, I don't think the chimpanzees ever were. Send a letter demanding they stop running the ad and never use great apes in advertisements again!
What were your favorite and least favorite commercials? Leave a comment and let us know.
Written by Liz Graffeo
Carey Hart has so many job descriptions that he's practically a one-man employment agency. He's a professional freestyle motocross rider, successful business owner, AMA team owner, and reality TV star, and now he can add one more line to his résumé: anti-fur model for PETA.
That's right! Hart's got heart. He's so passionate about the fur issue that he's starring in our latest "Ink, Not Mink" ad. OK, enough from me, now feast your eyes on this:
Phew, I know, he's definitely easy on the eyes. We've also got some fantastic interview footage in which Carey calls fur-wearers "petty" and "shallow" and also describes how ex-wife, Pink, got him involved in animal rights.
Check it out:
Russell Simmons—hip-hop mogul, philanthropist, and editor-in-chief of the online social network developed by and for the hip-hop community, GlobalGrind.com—loves, loves, loves our Veggie Love Super Bowl ad, which was summarily rejected by NBC.
To help us make up for the viewers we lost by not being aired during the 2009 big Sunday game-of-all-games, GlobalGrind.com is calling on other media outlets to help us receive the more than 90 million "impressions," or views, we were denied.
"The hip-hop community is the biggest and best branding community in the world, which is why I feel my site GlobalGrind.com has a responsibility to the community to serve," says Russell, who has been a vegan for 9 years. "When we spread the word that corporate America is feeding us poison, the community will listen." He adds, "Global Grind is donating media space that will give the ad at least 50 million impressions, and this is just the beginning."
You can get in on the action, too. Make Russell and all your PETA Files friends proud by watching the ad right now, leaving a comment, and forwarding it to all your friends. And, hey, send it to your "enemies" too! You never know—they may become your friends after they see it.
You can also catch Russell in PETA President Ingrid Newkirk's newest book One Can Make a Difference as he contributed an essay, along with other compassionate celebrities. Click here for more information.
$825 billion. That's a lot of stimulus package. And Congress says zoos and aquariums won't see a penny of it.
While that's all well and good (as zoos are no vacation homes for animals), we've come up with a proposal that's a win-win situation for some big zoos.
We have offered to provide a lifetime supply of fruit or a donation toward animal care of $1,000 for every animal if the zoos end their breeding programs and reinvent themselves as sanctuaries for exotic animals rescued from circuses, abusive owners, and roadside attractions. Or, a zoo can get our money or fruit if it becomes a modern "virtual zoo" with animatronics and video footage of wildlife instead of real captives. That way, the animals are happier and the zoo has less work, more visitors, and some funds.
Do you think they'll go for it? Click here to read our letter to the Denver Zoo, and then tell us what you think.
Hayden Panettiere's alter-ego on Heroes may be indestructible, but in real life, the actor has a soft spot for animals.
You may remember that Hayden is a vegetarian who fought for dolphins in Japan a couple of years ago. Well, the pint-sized star once again proved that she has a huge heart for animals by intervening in behalf of birds on the Heroes set. When some birds in a nearby tree disrupted filming, a member of the crew reportedly attempted to disperse them by blasting them with a huge leaf blower. That didn't sit well with Hayden, who apparently sprang into action, shouting, "What are you doing? How would you like someone to blow that thing inside your house?" She made such a ruckus that the crew had no choice but to move the scene to a different location.
Kudos to you, Hayden, for always standing up for what's right (and for kicking butt and taking names on my fave show). Milo, you'd best be good to our lady!
Blayne Doyle, a retired Florida police officer, had several harrowing experiences during his many years on the force. He was shot and stabbed and was involved in life-threatening automobile, motorcycle, and airplane accidents. But if you were to ask him which event stuck out as the most frightening, he would tell you that it was the day he was forced to shoot and kill an 8,000-pound rampaging elephant named Janet, who was carrying a woman and five children on her back. Yesterday was the 17th anniversary of this tragic event. Sadly, not much has changed in the intervening years. For example, the Liebel Family Circus, which tours throughout Florida, is currently using an elephant named Nosey to give rides.
Blayne has reached out to the governor of Florida, Charlie Crist, asking him to ban elephant rides in Florida. You can read Blayne's moving letter here.
The most shocking part to me is that, in 2004, a circus worker reported that Nosey attacked him during an appearance in Clinton, Iowa. While the worker was tending to the elephant's water dish, Nosey hit him with her tusk, lifted him off his feet, and propelled him down an incline. The worker was rushed to the hospital and received stitches for a head injury. But somehow it's safe to let children ride on Nosey's back? I don't think so.
So, Gov. Crist, won't you please ban elephant rides in Florida? By doing so, not only will you send the powerful message that elephants should not be abused for entertainment, you might also prevent history from repeating itself.
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.