Written by PETA
For more than eight months this year, a PETA investigator worked undercover inside University of Utah animal labs, where she documented the miserable conditions and daily suffering of dogs, cats, monkeys, rats, mice, rabbits, frogs, cows, pigs, and sheep. Today, The Salt Lake Tribune ran a story about the investigation, including the response from Tom Parks, the university's vice president for research. The response is (not so) stunningly callous: "None of the things she alleges are substantive. It's a remarkably banal list of ordinary events in an animal-care facility."
Here's a list of the things the university considers "banal"—part of an "ordinary" day in the "animal-care facility":
Brain injections, desperate thirst, tumors, and holes in skulls: just another banal day in the lab, right?
We have filed complaints against the university with the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and local law-enforcement officials, and you can take action to help animals at the University of Utah too.
Written by Logan Scherer
Tel Aviv has become the first city in Israel to prohibit horse-drawn carriages, thanks largely to years of tireless campaigning by Concern for Helping Animals in Israel (CHAI) and its sister organization, Hakol Chai. Their efforts included organizing international letter-writing campaigns, educational presentations in schools, a benefit concert, and a rousing demonstration outside City Hall.
Because CHAI and Hakol Chai were determined to make a difference, exhausted, sick, and injured horses and donkeys will no longer be beaten and whipped by metal and junk peddlers who force them to pull huge, heavy carriages in dangerous, busy traffic in Tel Aviv.
This success story has inspired me to try to score a similar victory for exhausted, abused horses closer to home, so I've added, "Write to New York City councilmembers—again—re horse-drawn carriages," to the top of my to-do list. Won't you do the same?
Written by Karin Bennett
I enjoy cooking, and my chocolate pie is pretty delicious, if I do say so myself. Luckily for me, my friends and family like the pie, because, frankly, besides that one delectable dessert, I'm not a good cook. I'd be in quite a pickle if I couldn't bring my old crowd-pleaser to our yearly vegan Thanksgiving Day potluck dinner.
But this year, I'm thinking about mixing things up and surprising* (and possibly delighting) everyone at the dinner table by also bringing a few bottles of Tofurky and Gravy. That's right—just in time for vegan Thanksgiving Day celebrations everywhere, Jones Soda Co. has created a limited-edition Tofurky and gravy–flavored soda, which they are delivering along with a few dessert treats in an adorable metal lunch box. Feast your eyes, folks:
Want to win one of these fantastic gift packs? Of course you do. Just jot down your favorite Thanksgiving Day recipe below. It can be sweet or savory—just bowl us over. The two people who submit the most scrumptious recipes get the goods.
Written by Karin Bennett
*Fortunately our host doesn't dictate which dishes we can bring to the annual soirée.
Newsflash: Cows on dairy farms aren't happy. In fact, they are quite the opposite.
So how is it that the California Milk Advisory Board (CMAB) can continue to claim that the "best" cheese comes from California's supposedly ecstatic cows?
You know the ads—the one with a handful of free-roaming, robust cows cavorting sassily under a cheerful California sky? Apparently we're expected to believe that all cows used on dairy farms in California look like this …
… as opposed to this:
In the past, we've had some choice words on the subject of California's supposedly happy cows. In 2002, PETA filed suit against the CMAB for false advertising—but the California Supreme Court refused to hear the case on the grounds that as a government agency, the CMAB can’t be sued for violating California state advertising laws.*
But we kept fighting the good fight against the CMAB's false advertising with a series of "Unhappy Cow" demonstrations and public service announcements, including a few starring the man himself, animal crusader James Cromwell. And now, on the heels of our most recent undercover investigation inside a dairy farm, the time has come to return to the trenches.
We're filing a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, calling on it to make the CMAB stop lying to consumers about the way cows on dairy farms are treated. "Happy cow" ads mislead consumers into believing that California dairy cows are pasture raised, free roaming, and grass fed and live in conditions that make them "happy" (i.e., that they are well cared for, content, comfortable, and healthy). In reality, these cows are drugged up, over-milked, and denied even the most basic care. Doesn't sound like a "happy cow" to me.
Written by Amanda Schinke
*Let's put aside how alarming one might find the idea of a government not subject to regulation.
I think I'm finally morphing into a football fan. First, I learned about all the excellent veggie fare at football stadiums, and today PETA released an exclusive interview with hunky football tight end Tony Gonzalez, and his gaga-gorgeous wife, October.
After their sexy shoot for a new anti-fur ad for PETA, the couple sat down to talk about the benefits of a plant-based diet. In the interview, Tony calls the cruel treatment of animals on factory farms "appalling" and describes how his health improved dramatically after ditching meat and dairy products two years ago.
On the many benefits of his mainly plant-based diet, Tony says, "I'm going into my 13th year in the NFL, and I switched over [to a plant-based diet] two years ago. … [T]he day after a game, everybody's sore … and I'm jumping rope and they're looking at me like, 'Man you're supposed to be the old guy on the team. You're acting like you're the youngest guy on the team.'"
I may be Tony's newest admirer, but I have no doubt that many of his longtime fans will follow his lead and explore meat-free cuisine.
As a PETA intern, I've had the opportunity to tour several cities protesting everything from the dairy industry to glue traps. But the most attention-grabbing of all the tours I've taken part in involved setting up a steel-jaw trap in cities throughout the Midwest, including Minneapolis, Madison, Milwaukee, and Lansing.
Every year, millions of animals are drowned, gassed, electrocuted, and even skinned alive to produce fur coats and trim, yet there are no federal laws to protect animals on fur farms. Covered in blood and wearing a fur coat that was donated to PETA, I had the opportunity to educate people about the horrors of the fur industry by pretending to be trapped like an animal captured for his or her fur.
Some passersby looked on in fear, some stopped to make sure I was breathing, and others thanked us for speaking up for animals. One guy even purchased a vegetarian lunch because of our demonstration.
Many top retailers and designers refuse to sell or work with fur, but callous designers such as Giorgio Armani ignore the fact that synthetics are more practical and just as luxurious—not to mention cruelty-free.
My PETA internship has been a tremendous experience that's allowed me to educate people about the fur industry, meet concerned citizens from around the country, and fight for the rights of animals everywhere. How about you give it a go?
Written by PETA intern Stephanie Boardmen
Litter isn't just ugly and dirty—it kills. Artist Chris Jordan took a series of photographs of albatross chicks, and the photos are so surreal that I thought they were part of some strange pop-art installation meant to shock and disturb the viewer. The genuine shock, though, came when I found out that these are unaltered images of real birds.
Taken at Midway Atoll, a remote stretch of sand and coral near the middle of the North Pacific, the photographs depict corpses of albatross chicks whose parents mistakenly picked up plastic in the ocean thinking it was food. With bellies full of plastic, the chicks died from starvation, toxicity, and choking.
This isn't the first time that this tragedy has been documented. Wildlife filmmaker Rebecca Hosking used her film documentary about the Midway Atoll to get the very first ban on plastic bags enacted in Modbury, England, and her essay about it was published in Ingrid E. Newkirk's book, One Can Make a Difference.
Every year, this lethal diet of trash kills tens of thousands of albatross chicks on Midway, which is 2,000 miles from the nearest continent—proof that the empty lighters and fishing line that people carelessly discard on roadsides and beachfronts suffocates and poisons animals who inadvertently consume it. It takes only seconds for us to throw away our trash instead of littering and putting the lives of countless animals in danger. If you spot litter, pick it up, and if you catch someone littering, say something—you may literally be saving a life. It really is that easy to be kind.
Written by Logan Scherer
As if we needed another reason to adore Ellen DeGeneres, the delightfully ubiquitous comic loves her vegan lifestyle and wants everyone to know it. She's dedicated a page of her Web site to promoting her cruelty-free existence. On this new Web page, she writes the following:
I personally chose to go vegan because I educated myself on factory farming and cruelty to animals, and I suddenly realized that what was on my plate were living things, with feelings. And I just couldn't disconnect myself from it any longer. I read books like Diet for a New America and saw documentaries like Earthlings and Meet Your Meat, and it became an easy choice for me.If you choose to educate yourself, it'll be an easy choice for you, too. Click here to take a look at a variety of reasons for living a vegan life.
I personally chose to go vegan because I educated myself on factory farming and cruelty to animals, and I suddenly realized that what was on my plate were living things, with feelings. And I just couldn't disconnect myself from it any longer. I read books like Diet for a New America and saw documentaries like Earthlings and Meet Your Meat, and it became an easy choice for me.
If you choose to educate yourself, it'll be an easy choice for you, too. Click here to take a look at a variety of reasons for living a vegan life.
This has me wondering if we can petition to change the American Idol rules: Can Ellen, who is next season's new judge, be crowned American Idol? After all, her powers of persuasion are undeniably charming, and I can't think of anyone better to convince people to make the compassionate, healthy, and environmentally conscious decision to go vegan.
Posted by Logan Scherer
With winter rapidly approaching, it's time to get cozy, comfy, and cruelty-free. Forget about fur collars, trim, or accessories: 'Tis the season to go faux! Help save animals from becoming fashion victims with the click of a mouse! Just follow these five easy steps on Twitter:
Step 1: Burberry may be best known for its famous plaid frocks, but the company's use of fur is a great big faux pas.
How to Help: Post this twitition (that's right, I Twitter-fied it!) from your Twitter account:
@Burberry Stop supporting cruelty 2 animals & adopt a permanent fur-free policy NOW!
Step 2: More than half of the finished fur garments imported into the U.S. come from China. Animals who live on Chinese fur farms spend their entire lives in intensive confinement, only to be pulled from their cages, thrown to the ground, bludgeoned, beaten, and skinned alive.
How to Help: I'm sure by now you've probably seen our shocking undercover video from a Chinese fur farm. Please tell your followers about the horrors of the fur trade by posting the video on your Twitter page: http://ow.ly/zV9A
Step 3: Animals on fur farms around the world are often driven to cannibalism because of the extreme stress and frustration caused by intensive confinement.
How to Help: Because a picture speaks a thousand words, click here to retweet this Twitpic!
Step 4: By signing our fur-free pledge, you'll be sending a powerful message ("Hell no, we want faux!") not only to the fur industry but also to designers, retailers, and others who directly profit from the suffering caused by this cruel industry.
How to Help: Pledge to go fur-free and ask your Twitter followers to do so as well: http://ow.ly/zVf8
Step 5: Each year, the Canadian government allows sealers to beat and skin hundreds of thousands of seals. Baby seals—some of them only weeks old—have their skulls smashed in or are shot for their fur. If you haven't checked out our awesome "Save the Seals" celebrity ad series, take a peek: http://ow.ly/zVey
How to Help: Vote for your favorite "Save the Seals" celebrity using our twitter poll and ask your followers to vote too. Who will you vote for:@Jayde_Nicole@PamelaDAnderson@BrodyJenner@Perez@hollymadison123
So, tweeps, you gonna help the millions of animals who need you? Pretty please, we'll ♥ you faux-ever!
Written by Royale Ziegler, PETA's official twitterer
For cowboy Rocco, the path to happiness and longevity is paved with green bricks of vegan deliciousness. When Rocco first appeared on The Dr. Oz Show four weeks ago, the 53-year-old meat-eater had the heart of an 85-year-old and was on the deadly road to cardiac arrest. Within minutes of meeting Rocco, Dr. Oz made his diagnosis: Rocco was addicted to animal products with saturated fat and sugar contents so high that Rocco was dying of heart disease and diabetes without even knowing it.
But Rocco's condition was, thankfully, reversible. Dr. Oz put the cowboy on a 28-day vegan diet, and in just four weeks, Rocco lost 6 inches from his waistline and his glucose level went from a near-lethal 172 to a normal 99.
"If I can do it, anybody can do it," said Rocco. In a mere month, Rocco's cruelty-free diet saved his life, and his continued vegetarian lifestyle guarantees him a longer, happier, healthier existence.
Now, if only Rocco would ditch ranching for animals' health …
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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.