Written by PETA
Today in London, acclaimed novelist, playwright, actor and social justice leader Benjamin Zephaniah helped PETA Europe launch its new “Animal Liberation Project,” which points out some pretty shocking parallels between injustices of the past and the treatment of animals today.
The exhibit forces people to think about whether or not it is appropriate to compare perpetually chained performing bears to shackled human slaves. Or battery-caged hens to child sweatshop workers. Or painful procedures performed on unwilling human subjects to the experiments that torture and kill millions of animals in laboratories. But really at its core, the exhibit is all about challenging the “might makes right” mentality that was the very foundation of human slavery, child labor and the denial of women’s equality and which is also responsible for factory farming, animal experimentation and other abuses to animals—and people—today. The launch of the project was timed to coincide with the 200th anniversary of the British Parliament’s ban on the human slave trade and took place in London along the Thames, where more than 750,000 captured Africans were once traded. Powerful stuff, for sure.
Check out what Benjamin had to say about the exhibit here, in an op-ed he wrote for The Guardian. And click here to see the full Animal Liberation Project and judge it for yourself.
PETA Files reader Dave Cortright passed this hilarious Onion video on to me and I just had to share.
The sad thing is that animal experiments just as absurd as this fictional one still take place. Take smoking/nicotine experiments, for example. We know that smoking is harmful to human health; we don’t need to shove animals into inhalation chambers or dose pregnant rats with huge amounts of nicotine to confirm it. There are countless examples like this, but this was supposed to be a lighthearted entry, so I’ll stop now . . .
Anyway, if you haven’t seen Testing 1, 2, 3 yet, give it a look and let me know what you think.
I got a real kick out of this Bizarro comic someone scanned from their newspaper and sent in the other day, and the wonderful Dan Piraro, the longtime PETA supporter and animal rights advocate who writes the strip, was gracious enough to send me a high-quality version to put on the blog. Thanks, Dan!
As the Michael Moore juggernaut continues unabated, I thought it might be nice to take a quick breather and check out some of the amazing work that PETA India has been doing this week, which, because it's not quite so sensational, probably won't be getting the attention it deserves. Animal Rahat is a program that works closely with PETA India to bring relief to working bullocks, donkeys, ponies, and horses in India by giving them the rest, drinking water, and veterinary care that they so desperately need.
The sad situation for most working animals in India is that the people who use them simply can't afford to ever give them a day off, let alone veterinary care, and the reports and pictures that we get from India about these animals' lives and deaths are heartbreaking.
Which is why it's always so great to get photos like these, from the team at Animal Rahat, who spent last weekend fixing water troughs in a local square near their facilities.
If you'd like to sponsor a working donkey, buffalo, bullock, or pony in India through Animal Rahat, you can learn more here.
For one reason or another, Taiwan is proving to be something of a golden child these days when it comes to passing progressive legislation that benefits animals. If things continue this way, the Dutch are going to need to start watching their backs or they'll lose their current status as "most animal-friendly country" before you can say "Dude, where the hell did you get these 'animal-friendly-country' statistics from anyway?" Under Taiwan's latest piece of legislation, the Wildlife Conservation Law, all animal circuses will be banned, exports of exotic animals as pets will be prohibited, and the punishment for "harassing, hurting, or abandoning animals" will include a maximum one-year prison term. Way to go, Taiwan!
There was a fantastic feature article in The Chicago Tribune Magazine this weekend about the animal rights movement, with the premise that as times change, tactics change, but the message remains the same. It's always great to see animal rights get thoughtful mainstream coverage that's free of rhetoric, and this article will hopefully introduce a lot of people directly to the issues behind the bullhorns and the bunny costumes. You can check it out here.
Just a quick bit of good news for you to start off your Tuesday: According to last week’s Taipei Times, a new amendment to Taiwan’s Wildlife Conservation Law means that animal circuses are on the way out in Taiwan. When interviewed about the progressive new law, legislator Tien Chiu-Chin said, "Circuses do not need animals to be fun and successful. … Most important, by exposing our children to wild animals through circus acts, we are setting an incorrect example of how humans should interact with animals." 'Nuff said, Tien Chiu-Chin. Here's hoping the U.S. wakes up and follows Taiwan's example. You can read the full story here.
Just a few more little tidbits for you from the recent party that the influential political odd couple Mary Matalin and James Carville hosted for the launch of PETA VP Dan Mathews' new book.
Evidently, Mary—who is certainly no stranger to hosting big events—has never in her life received so many calls about what to wear to a party. I absolutely love the idea that all those Capitol Hill bigwigs were calling up anxiously the day before to find out where they could buy vegan shoes. Mary herself ended up going barefoot, just to be on the safe side, and as for James, well, James opted for hemp—announcing to the assembled partygoers, "I'm all hemped out like Woody Harrelson!"
Dan gave a speech about the history of animal welfare legislation in this country, which has been consistently bipartisan, with strong advances for animals coming from staunch conservatives just as often as card-carrying liberals, and to drive home the point, Mary observed that it was incredibly rare that she and James could host a party together—normally when she throws a bash for her republican pals, James hightails it out of there to take the kids to a movie, and vice versa (I bet those kids get to see a lot of movies).
Mary also pointed out something else that she and Dan Mathews have in common—they've both had the experience of having bologna thrown at them in Iowa. For the full context of that joke, you should check out Dan's book. If it can reconcile a crowd of hardcore democrats and republicans in Washington, you can bet it's well worth the cover price.
Click here for the full text of Dan’s speech.
Here's another classic for you, from a few years back. I've often heard people make the point that no one would wear fur if they were able to see that draping yourself in dead babies is barbaric, regardless of the species. Of course, only at PETA can you make that point in a meeting and end up with a "baby" fur coat by the end of the day. Yup. The handsome model in luxury baby trim is my friend Pulin. And the expressions on those people's faces are priceless.
To mark the occasion, those star-spotting gossip hounds over in our Communications department have put together a little list of animal moms in action. Enjoy!
Like Rosie O’Donnell, who will have more time to spend with her own cubs after she leaves The View, female grizzlies often form partnerships—they travel together, defend each other, and raise children together as a single family unit.
As obsessed about hiding their fawns from predators as TomKat is about hiding baby Suri from the paparazzi, these dedicated does make their babies lie flat on the ground so that they are camouflaged against the forest floor.
Taking a page from Susan Sarandon’s book on how to raise a brood, baboons have been known to conduct “sit-ins,” block traffic, and throw rocks at cars after their youngsters were struck and killed by vehicles.
Taking a cue from Will Smith’s Oscar-nominated performance as a struggling single dad, the males guard and incubate the eggs when the females take off for the winter. Unable to go out and feed or “pursue happyness,” they fast for four months until the chicks hatch.
If chimpanzees lose their parents, their aunts, older sisters, or other members of their families or tribes will step up to adopt them faster than you can say “Brangelina.”
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.