Written by Alisa Mullins
"Tea partiers" aren't the only ones who've been
fixed with the gimlet stare of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Social-action groups such as Greenpeace,
the NAACP, and PETA have also been targeted by the agency, and PETA is calling on the U.S.
Department of the Treasury to expand the recently announced criminal probe into the IRS' activity
to include several audits that targeted PETA's tax-exempt status.
PETA has been subjected to three lengthy, expensive, and
disruptive IRS audits, including a 20-month one during the George W. Bush
administration, which IRS agents conducting the audit admitted was the result
of the agency's bowing to pressure from members of Congress with ties to the meat, the experimentation, and other industries being targeted by PETA
campaigns and/or seeing
their workers forced to answer to cruelty-to-animals charges
as a result of PETA investigations.
PETA came through each IRS audit with a clean bill of health,
but it doesn't say a lot for our democratic process when Congress, at the
behest of powerful industries, uses tactics worthy of the East German Stasi to
harass and intimidate social-change advocates. For years, PETA President Ingrid
E. Newkirk could not re-enter the U.S. without being escorted into a back room,
having her bags rummaged through, and being detained—sometimes for hours—resulting in missed flight connections.
It doesn't stop there—ever more repressive state laws are being proposed, the latest
of which are arguably unconstitutional "ag-gag" bills designed to prevent undercover
investigations on factory farms and in slaughterhouses as well as bills to
with or new regulations regarding hunting and fishing.
What You Can Do
Please visit our action alerts page for opportunities to combat cruelty on factory farms, in laboratories, and
wherever else animals are being abused.
Written by PETA
Michelle Obama's promotion of the IRS's breast-pump tax break is getting mixed reviews. Tea Party star Michele Bachmann, who one would think would be in favor of any measure that lowers taxes, blasted the new rule, saying that it gives new meaning to the term "nanny state." Sarah Palin, who, as governor of Alaska, declared October "Breastfeeding Awareness Month," now apparently believes that encouraging breastfeeding is a plot to divert Americans' attention away from the high price of cow's milk. (Good news, Sarah: The prices of soy and almond milk are coming down!)
But the IRS ruling does have its supporters, including the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and other medical groups that lobbied for the breast-pump tax deduction.
Numerous studies indicate that babies who are breastfed are healthier. Conversely, babies who are fed cow's milk "receive inadequate amounts of [v]itamin E, iron, essential fatty acids, and excessive amounts of protein, potassium, and sodium," according to the AAP. (In fact, the AAP recommends against feeding cow's milk to children under 1 year of age.)
Cow's milk has been found to cause or aggravate many common childhood ailments, including runny noses, allergies, ear infections, bronchitis, and asthma. For the many children who are lactose-intolerant, milk consumption can lead to stomachaches, nausea, constipation, and diarrhea. Studies have also linked cow's milk to more serious health problems, including diabetes, heart disease, autism, juvenile diabetes, and even cancer.
America's cows are definitely on board with efforts to boost breastfeeding. They'd prefer to nurse their own babies, thank you very much.
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
an animal, please click
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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.