Written by PETA
Want to take a wild guess which of the world's many "fashion weeks" is now the first to ban fur?
No, it's not Milan, London, or even Miami. That's way too obvious. Think farther north. Arctic Ocean north. That's right—Norway, home to polar bears, glaciers, and ice hotels, has seen fur banned from the catwalks at its upcoming Oslo Fashion Week (OFW), which will be held in February.
The move was spearheaded by fur-free designer Fam Irvoll and the Norwegian animal rights group NOAH, which organized a massive candlelight vigil against fur back in November and gathered signatures from more than 200 designers, models, photographers, and other members of the Norwegian fashion industry who refuse to work with fur.
"It has been a very natural choice for us because we do not want the OFW to appear as an arena in which to promote products based on the treatment of animals [as] prohibited by animal welfare concerns in several countries," said Paul Vasbotten, the general manager of OFW.
Paris, Milan, London, and New York, what are you waiting for?
Written by Alisa Mullins
"London has soared to the top of the world's culinary league tables in recent years, boasting a mind boggling range of eateries.
"We have a noble history of vegetarianism so it is great news to be crowned the best city on earth to enjoy meat-free nosh. We are helping to cultivate a taste for all things veggie by supporting green fingered efforts by all Londoners to grow their own fresh fruit and veg."—London Mayor Boris Johnson's reaction to his city's being named the most vegetarian-friendly city in the world.
If Boris' outstanding support of all things vegetarian doesn't convince you that London deserved top honors, or if you just want to make your mouth water, read all about the city's culinary delights.*
Written by Shawna Flavell
*Warning: You might get the urge to buy airline tickets to fly across the big pond after reading. Don't say I didn't warn you.
PETA Europe members were at The O2 arena in London yesterday to protest Ben Hur Live's use of real horses, camels, donkeys, chickens, falcons, and eagles forced to "perform" in the show's rock concert–like chaos of bright lights, loud noise, and commotion.
Animals forced to perform never find it entertaining. And for the more than 100 animals used in the European production of Ben Hur Live, "stage fright" has certainly taken on a very literal meaning.
We've all heard that animals used for circuses are beaten, chained for up to 100 hours at a time, and carted around the country in tiny boxcars without a semblance of a natural life, but being on stage is just as terrifying and unnatural, and as I'm sure you've probably learned, it often ends in tragedy for the animals and the audience.
Please tell everyone you know in Europe that Ben Hur Live is hell for animals before someone gets hurt, and urge your friends and family never to patronize shows that use live animals.
Written by Heather Drennan
No, it wasn't a resurgence of hookers, but PETA's "bloody," "dying" babes were out to solicit New York City tourists—for compassion for the bulls who will be taunted and tormented by drunk morons during the upcoming Running of the Bulls in Pamplona, Spain. After the bulls are sent stampeding in terror through the streets of Pamplona, they will be dragged into the bullring to be mutilated and killed for the "entertainment" of cheering crowds.
Similar demonstrations have been held in Paris, London, and other cities around the world. You can check out some NSFW action shots from similar demos here.
Pamplona's "festivities" kick off July 7, which is just around the corner.
Written by Karin Bennett
While I'm told there was thunder booming throughout London early yesterday morning, the real storming was taking place around St. Paul's cathedral, where 100 PETA Europe demonstrators sprawled across the steps wearing nothing but blood-red paint and bear masks.
The naked demonstrators were there to protest the continued use of real bearskin for The Queen's Guards' ceremonial caps. Bears killed for the caps may suffer for days in traps or die of blood loss or infection after being shot. When mother bears are killed, their orphaned cubs are easy prey for predators—if they don't starve to death first.
After we heard about Michael Jackson's apparent desire to include exotic animals in his upcoming London concerts, my heart sank. As superfan of MJ's music since birth and also a staunch animal defender, I'd never felt so conflicted. Luckily, after PETA Europe sent a letter regarding the King of Pop, we got word that he will not be using any live animals in his concert series at London's O2 arena.
Too bad he still has a spotty past when it comes to compassion for animals. It had been widely reported that Jackson planned to ride an elephant on stage and use panthers, but subjecting animals to amplified noise, bright lights, and the fast pace of a massive concert production is cruel. Plus, his rap sheet from the not-too-distant past includes dumping his chimpanzee, Bubbles, with a Hollywood trainer. And many of the animals he left behind at Neverland Ranch ended up being sold at auction, despite repeated offers from PETA to help place them in sanctuaries. His orangutans were reportedly sold to a private owner in Connecticut, two of his alligators are languishing at the disgusting G.W. Exotic Animal Park, his giraffes in the care of a private owner in Arizona are on the verge of being evicted, and more.
Michael, it's bad, it's bad, and you know it.
We know that Michael's "Off the Wall," but his treatment of animals crosses the line to cruel and unacceptable. Hopefully, this new announcement is a sign that things are moving in a new direction. I mean, this is a man who holds the Guinness World Record for giving more to charities than any other entertainer, so you'd think he'd be generous with animals, too … but as much as I love singing "Dirty Diana" into my hairbrush, his cruelty toward animals leaves me less than "thrilled."
Written by Christine Doré
By now, the whole world knows about the horrors of the Canadian seal slaughter. With demonstrations taking place around the world, it's pretty hard not to notice. Our friends in Canada, Germany, and cities across the U.S. have been out on the streets to spread the word. Check out some photos of recent demonstrations, and then visit our Action Center online to find out how you can organize your own protest.
Inspired yet? Take a minute to read the words of a Canadian who opposes the seal slaughter, and then take action by telling the Vancouver Olympic Organizing Committee that you won't support the Olympic Games until Canada stops supporting the seal slaughter.
Written by Lianne Turner
Here's what Jeff says about this week's masterpiece: "The strip is based on the sad measures that officials have to take in order to protect rhinos from poachers. And a little depravity thrown in for good measure."
He also let me know that, in honor of Earth Week, he sprayed this strip with 50 percent less pesticides. Which was very noble of him, I thought. Anyway, this one's a zinger—enjoy!
To check out the archives of past strips, click here.
In England, they do Mother’s Day differently (i.e., they actually celebrate it on the right date). And with Mothering Sunday coming up across the pond, PETA Europe have put together an incredibly striking demonstration to draw attention to the horrible suffering of mother pigs in gestation crates. My friend Alexia has the full story over on her blog Fish & Chimps, but here’s a quick look at the amazing demonstration that’s been getting tons of coverage for pigs abused on factory farms.
It’s pretty well established that Stephen Colbert is the top name in hard-hitting, up-to-the-minute news nowadays—not only does he make or break presidential campaigns, but the dude even has a bridge named after him. And in yet one more coup for the king of late-night news, Colbert is fortunate enough to be hosting PETA President Ingrid Newkirk herself tonight, so that they can discuss the recent HBO documentary about PETA.
To mark this occasion, we’ve mocked up a brand-new Stephen Colbert doghouse for our program to help “backyard” dogs. As Ingrid puts it, “If you were stuck outside on a chain for your whole life in all weather and no love, this might at least make the people in the house over there come by once in a while, just to look, and you could bark at them to pass the time.” Who needs a bridge when they can have a PETA doghouse with their face on it? You’re very welcome, Mr. Colbert.
Here’s hoping the “Colbert bump” we’ll get from this appearance brings us animal liberation by the end of the week. If you have Comedy Central, be sure to check out Ingrid on The Colbert Report tonight at 11:30 p.m. And if you don’t have Comedy Central … well you’re really missing out on a whole lot of stuff—I’ll post the video of the interview on the blog tomorrow morning.
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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.