Written by PETA
Well, we tried—but our permit to set up a factory farm display on the steps of the U.S. Capitol has been denied. Apparently, the Capitol Police thought that such a display posed "significant public health concerns about the possible spread of the H1N1 virus."
Hmm. That just might have been our point.
So, it's not safe to allow members of congress and lobbyists to be exposed to factory farms, but it looks like tough luck for the millions of Americans in rural areas who have to live amidst the poisonous waste of factory farms. And although the president has declared swine flu a national emergency, the government continues to prop up the industry that caused the crisis (to the tune of $62.6 million in one year alone—with the possibility of $250 million more in the coming fiscal year).
What do you think?
Written by Amanda Schinke
It's true: Dollar General cares—about its customers' concerns and about animals.
After we received complaints that Dollar General, which has thousands of stores across the U.S., was selling hideously cruel glue traps, we wrote to the bargain retailer. In our letter, we described how animals who get stuck on glue traps can suffer for days before finally dying of starvation or dehydration. Many victims of glue traps rip their skin from their own faces and bodies as they try to escape, and some resort to chewing off their own limbs while trying to free themselves. We also let the company know that there are plenty of humane ways to deal with mice and rats.
Dollar General responded to our letter by announcing that it will stop selling glue traps. Just like that. The company didn't hem and haw—officials simply made a compassionate decision.
Dollar General joins other large retailers, including Albertsons, Walgreens, CVS, Rite Aid, and Safeway, that have stopped selling glue traps after discussions with PETA. Please thank the company for its decision—and then ask home-improvement biggie baddie Lowe's to follow suit.
Written by Karin Bennett
Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker is vegetarian once again, and as he explained in an interview with Radio Big Boy, "almost full blown vegan."
We're pumped for Travis's evolving compassionate lifestyle (and we'd like to point out that "Full Blown Vegan" would be an excellent album name). It's also great that he's getting his dad in on the action—as Travis explained, "My pops, he's a Vietnam vet, hard-core, old-school—he used to make fun of me 'cause I didn't eat meat … Now after being on tour and going to some of the spots, he's at home trying to find vegan spots in that area."
As for Travis's decision to start dumping dairy foods? "Once you find out all the crazy stuff with dairy," he says, "you'd probably second-guess it too, man."
We couldn't have said it better ourselves.
Written by Amanda Schinke
Sure, some men joke about how to score with women, but the horse-racing industry's use of stallions to impregnate tens of thousands of mares—in the quest for one big winner—is no laughing matter.
The good news is that thoroughbred breeding stats for 2009 show a decline in the number of horses who were bred. The number of stallions bred dropped almost 9 percent, and the number of mares bred fell 13.5 percent, according to The Jockey Club. Don't misunderstand—there's still a whole lotta suffering in the making. This year alone, more than 45,000 mares were "covered" (bred), which means that tens of thousands of foals will be born into the racing industry and face the risk of suffering broken bones, being drugged, and being abandoned, neglected, or shipped overseas for slaughter when they are no longer considered "useful." Most of the slaughtering of U.S. horses takes place in Mexico and Canada: More than 100,000 U.S. horses per year are trucked to Mexico and Canada to be slaughtered (and more than 10,000 of those horses are thoroughbreds formerly used for racing).
The Kentucky Derby and other high-stakes races represent the suffering of thousands of horses—day in and day out, year in and year out. While the drop in breeding means that fewer horses will be born to suffer a lifetime of abuse, there's still much more work to be done. Take a minute to check out our investigation into a Japanese horse slaughterhouse and write to the National Thoroughbred Racing Association and demand breeding limits.
Written by Karin Bennett
When I was in high school, I took a peanut butter sandwich with me for lunch every day. Every. Single. Day. For four long years. My mother probably thought I was being stubborn just to annoy her, but the truth is that even before I stopped eating animals, I couldn't stomach the cafeteria's nauseating (and cholesterol-laden) options, such as greasy chicken nuggets and grayish-greenish Salisbury steak.
For lucky students at one Florida charter school, "mystery meat" is something they'll never have to suffer through. That's because the Alachua Learning Center only serves delicious vegetarian food, all of which is made daily from scratch. Not only is vegetarian food yummy, it's also healthy and is often cheaper than greasy, artery-clogging meat. More and more schools now serve vegetarian and vegan food—which is great news for kids and animals.
It can be tough to get kids to eat healthy meals, but I think black beans with corn and rice sounds way more appetizing than ground-up cow noses on a bun.
Written by Heather Drennan
In a news item that dates back to late August but was just reported on in Sunday's Boston Herald, a half dozen staff and students at Harvard Medical School became ill after they drank coffee from a vending machine that had been laced with sodium azide, a preservative that is commonly used in laboratories. The story reported that all the afflicted worked in a laboratory where they torment mice in immune system experiments.
While we would never wish poisoning upon any living being (talk about a painful way to go) it does have us wondering if karma might be at work again.
Recent publications from Harvard Medical School faculty members included experiments in which mice had 25 percent of their skin burned off by placing them in 190-plus-degree water and were then injected with increasingly large doses of E. coli to see at which point 50 percent of the animals would die. In another experiment, mice were injected with cancerous cells to induce the growth of colorectal tumors and then injected with a herpes virus to see how it affected the cancer. At the end of the experiment, the animals who didn't die during the study were killed and dissected.
It does look like some of the animal torturers experimenters at Harvard have gotten a taste of their own medicine—literally. Let this be a lesson to you, Harvard: Never underestimate the fury of a mouse scorned.
Written by Alisa Mullins
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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.