Written by Jeff Mackey
Despite the endangered-species status of the southern resident orcas, the federal government is refusing to offer imprisoned orca Lolita the same protection under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) that the rest of her family pod enjoys.
Rojer | cc by 2.0
You may recall that the National Marine Fisheries Service classified Washington state's southern resident orca population as endangered, giving it protection from being harmed or harassed under the ESA, but without explanation, it excluded Lolita, who was captured from the pod as a calf and has been held prisoner and forced to perform for the last 42 years. PETA called foul on the unlawful double standard and filed suit on Lolita's behalf, joined by the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF), Washington residents, and a former employee of the Miami Seaquarium, where Lolita is held captive.
The Miami Seaquarium and the federal government filed motions to get the case dismissed, and the judge acquiesced on timing grounds—he didn't address the merits of the case—meaning that the Miami Seaquarium can continue to confine Lolita to the smallest orca tank in North America (the orca equivalent of a bathtub), prevent her from interacting with any members of her own species, deny her appropriate protection from the sun, and force her to perform silly tricks. But PETA and the ALDF are already regrouping and planning our next move, and the lawsuit's dismissal is merely a hitch in our efforts to see Lolita released into a seaside sanctuary in her home waters.
Please send a polite e-mail to Eric C. Schwabb, assistant administrator for fisheries, urging him to give Lolita her rightful protection under the ESA.
Written by Michelle Kretzer
PETA released video footage sent to us by a whistleblower inside Shin Nippon Biomedical
(SNBL) in Everett, Washington, showing egregious abuse of monkeys inside the laboratory, area residents
were so outraged that they decided to do something about it. More than two
dozen residents, local PETA supporters, and members of Action for Animals held signs
and chanted slogans outside SNBL during the morning commute, calling on the
company to stop its mistreatment of animals and switch to humane, non-animal
to the whistleblower, monkeys at SNBL have their
blood drawn so many times a day that their veins become damaged and workers dig
and poke for a spot to draw blood as the monkeys scream in pain and try to jerk
away. The whistleblower reported, "Eventually,
many of the monkeys stop fighting and reacting … it is like the life is gone
from them." Monkeys are also immobilized in restraint chairs
for many hours while workers pump drugs into their bodies. They struggle to
break free but sometimes collapse under the physical and emotional stress. Some
of the monkeys never recover.
The protesters in Everett didn't get mad—they got
active! You can, too, by clicking here to urge the airlines that are still delivering primates to
SNBL and other laboratories to ground the practice.
the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) listed the Southern Resident
killer whale population as endangered, affording them protection from being
harmed or harassed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the agency left out one lone orca.
Lolita was captured from the Southern
Resident population off the coast of Washington in 1970 as a calf and has been held
captive in a tiny cement tank—forced to perform at the Miami Seaquarium—ever
cited these captures as the likely reason for the population's decline, yet
it still denied protection to Lolita, the only surviving victim.
Together with the
Animal Legal Defense Fund, local residents, and a former Seaquarium employee, PETA filed a lawsuit against NMFS in Lolita's behalf alleging
that her exclusion from the ESA was unlawful. If we are successful, the Miami
Seaquarium will be prohibited from harming or harassing her—and PETA could then
try for precedent-setting improvements for Lolita, such as a larger tank, no
more forced performances, or even release to a sea pen in her native waters.
While we go after marine-mammal abusers in the courtroom, you can go after them at the bank by
refusing to fund this cruelty with your admission fee. Please also click here to send a
polite e-mail to Eric C. Schwaab, assistant administrator
for fisheries, asking that the agency ensure that Lolita
is given the protection that she is rightfully due under the Endangered Species
Written by PETA
It's happened again. After forking over a couple hundred dollars for tickets to a Ringling Bros. Circus performance in Everett, Washington, a lovely family had a change of heart after talking to PETA demonstrators outside the arena. Rather than watching trainers whip tigers and smack elephants with bullhooks, the entire family decided that it was worth it to sacrifice the money! (The venue refused to give them a refund.) Gotta love 'em.
If the circus is coming to your town, remember that leafleting can and does change minds. Contact us and we'll help you convince people never to buy tickets!
Written by Jennifer O'Connor
Show me a bag of pork rinds and two things will happen. First, images like this and that will race through my mind. Then I'll get choked up.
The revolting* "snack" made a truck driver named Edward Sutherland get choked up too—only his reaction was apparently not prompted by thoughts of what animals endured before they went down his gullet. Mr. Sutherland lost control of his rig, which careened across the interstate, jackknifed, and landed in a ditch.
The truck did not hit any other vehicles, and Mr. Sutherland walked away with minor injuries—and a citation for driving with his wheels off the road. Had I been the cop at the scene, I might have let him go with a warning—to eat only Pirate's Booty. How would you complete the following: "____—now that vegan snack is the ticket!"
Written by Karin Bennett
*If you know any people who don't think that eating fried pigskin is revolting, they just might after you show them this video of how it's made.
Yesterday, Nanci Alexander—one of our most generous and tireless friends to animals—joined a myriad of PETA supporters in D.C. to cut the ribbon and officially open the doors to PETA's Washington home, The Nanci Alexander Center for Animal Rights:
Nanci, whom Ingrid E. Newkirk describes as "an animal rights activist's activist," is the woman to whom Newkirk dedicated her book One Can Make a Difference. She is also the founder of the Animal Rights Foundation of Florida and the creator of Fort Lauderdale's fabulous all-vegan world cuisine restaurant Sublime, where Sir Paul McCartney and Steve-O have enjoyed meals, and as Ingrid says, if George Bernard Shaw and the Buddha were alive, you'd find them eating there too. She was among the first to spark debate over SeaWorld's horrible confinement of killer whales and dolphins and was also behind Florida's pig gestation-crate ban.
Finding herself seated next to President Bush the elder one day, Nanci asked him to do one thing: think about the suffering of the animals he shoots. If everyone spoke up that way, the world would be a far kinder place. Nanci has devoted her life to waking people up to cruelty to animals and changing everything from what they think to what they eat. PETA plans to do great things from the building now named after her.
Written by Logan Scherer
It was a cagey scene outside NASA headquarters in D.C. yesterday when our primates urged NASA to scrap its misguided $1.75 million plan to torment monkeys in radiation experiments. The demonstration was out-of-this-world spectacular, prompting NASA employees to approach our volunteers for some dynamic discussions. No one could walk by these guys without stopping to have a second look:
The more than two dozen monkeys in NASA's crude experiment will be zapped with a massive dose of radiation at Brookhaven National Laboratory in Long Island, New York, and then spend the rest of their lives condemned to a laboratory at Harvard's McLean Hospital where they'll be enlisted in a never-ending series of experiments to assess how the radiation devastates their brains and bodies. NASA has admitted that the radiation is "going to cause some cellular damage." What they really mean is that the monkeys may likely suffer from brain damage, cancer and premature aging.
It goes without saying that you should urge NASA to abandon these abhorrent experiments ASAP.
Y'all know how we feel about killing animals for "trauma training" by now, right? (Hint: It sucks—to put it mildly.)
Well, after learning that live pigs are reportedly being shot and stabbed in a California avocado grove owned by police officer David Bishop—all as part of trauma training exercises conducted by Washington-based Deployment Medicine International (DMI)—we were outraged. Not only is it unnecessary to mutilate and kill pigs—or any other animals—for trauma training, but to do so in an avocado grove may be illegal.
That's because Bishop's land isn't zoned for trauma or medical training exercises under the County of San Diego's zoning ordinances. Since San Diego County allows the director of its Department of Planning and Land Use to penalize zoning violators, we've fired off a letter to the current director, Eric Gibson, asking him to investigate Bishop and DMI for illegal activity.
Stabbing and shooting pigs to train medical personnel how to treat human injuries is positively medieval. With all the non-animal methods that are readily available, there are better models of human anatomy and physiology than pigs. Don't animals—and trauma victims—deserve better?
Last summer, my friends and I screamed bloody murder on the hair-raising Cyclone at Coney Island. But it was later that my stomach really turned when I learned about the electrocution of Topsy the abused circus elephant at Coney Island back in 1903. Her public execution was punishment for killing three men (including a sadistic trainer who tried to feed her a lit cigarette).
Elephant abuse has returned to Coney Island, thanks to Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. But unlike the very public atrocity of Topsy's death, Ringling tries to keep its trainers' actions under wraps.
Luckily, we have an easy way for you to expose Ringling's abuse of animals. It's our "The Cruelest Show on Earth" tee! Super-soft and stylish, it's sure to get all your friends talking. Not only that, but we are giving three of them away for this week's "Win It" Wednesday.
How do you win? Over the years, many exploited elephants have fought back against their abusers. As I read through the list of incidents involving elephants, John Lennon's "Instant Karma" kicks in my imaginary soundtrack.
So, which song title do you think best represents the suffering (or revenge!) of elephants who are beaten and humiliated in circuses? Tell us in the comments section below—the three most descriptive entries will win PETA's carnie-inspired anti-circus T-shirt.
Does the Michelin tire company promote obesity? I'm starting to think so. Consider the Michelin Man: He's a friendly fellow, but, oh, those unsightly rolls! The tire giant also owns Detroit's iconic roadside landmark, the Giant Tire—a possible shout-out to the dreaded spare tire?
We'll soon find out if there's any truth to my theory. PETA has written to Michelin North America's president and chair Dick Wilkerson and offered to put an anti-obesity ad on the Giant Tire. Our "Lose the Spare Tire: Go Veg!" ad would encourage Detroit residents to adopt a healthy, slenderizing, animal-free diet and just might help offset some of life's maintenance costs (i.e., medical bills).
Stay tuned to find out if we receive a fabulous "thumbs up" for our proposal—or a "flabulous" refusal suggesting that the company doesn't care.
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
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
Follow PETA on Twitter!
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.