Written by Alisa Mullins
These days, more and more hearty vegetarian meals are
popping up at sports venues across the continent. So, after years of ranking
the most vegetarian-friendly Major
League Baseball parks and NFL
stadiums, PETA has surveyed the top
vegetarian-friendly NBA arenas, and the results are in:
1. STAPLES Center
Because Lob City is playing
its best basketball in years, thanks to Blake Griffin and Chris Paul, Clippers
fans may have more to cheer about this year than Lakers fans do. But fans of
both teams have reason to celebrate the STAPLES Center's awesome vegetarian fare.
With vegan sloppy Joes, a veggie burger, vegan sushi, a grilled veggie sandwich, and
a hummus-and-pita plate, the STAPLES Center's vegetarian concessions are a slam
dunk for fans, no matter which team they're rooting for.
2. Air Canada Centre
The NBA's only
international team fittingly offers a menu with international flair. Fans in
general seating can choose from a vegan burrito, a hummus-and-veggie wrap, a veggie dog
topped with tomato and scallions, or a Bollywood veggie dog with potatoes, tamarind ketchup, papadum, and mint
chutney. In premium areas, vegetable sushi and chilled Vietnamese summer rolls
are on the menu. Fans flocking to see new arrival Rudy Gay won't be
disappointed with his performance or with the food at halftime.
3. Wells Fargo Center
When Andrew Bynum will suit up for the Sixers remains a mystery, but one
thing is certain: Fans looking for delicious, animal-friendly fare have come to
the right place. Veggie dogs, two kinds of veggie burgers, and roasted
butternut squash soup round out a starting lineup of vegetarian superstars that
give Philly fans plenty to cheer about.
4. BMO Harris Bradley Center
and Monta Ellis were All-Star snub victims, but vegetable-loving Bucks fans are
welcomed with open arms at the BMO Harris Bradley Center's concession stands.
They can choose from vegan tempeh sloppy Joes, hearty veggie burgers,
traditional PB&J sandwiches, fresh fruit, and baked potatoes. Meanwhile,
fans in premium areas can enjoy hot flatbread sandwiches made with marinated
tofu, pesto, and chipotle Vegenaise. And we can't help but wonder if the vegan
energy bars are what give Larry Sanders his impressive energy.
5. Oracle Arena
Second-year head coach Mark Jackson has orchestrated a
remarkable turnaround for the rejuvenated Golden State Warriors. But fans
crying foul because Stephen Curry was left out of the All-Star game certainly
won't feel cheated when they sample the tasty vegetarian fare at Oracle Arena.
A Vietnamese ginger-garlic tofu sandwich, tofu lettuce wraps, and Vietnamese
noodle salad lead an All-Star lineup of healthy, animal-friendly snacks that
are sure to have fans rebounding for more.
6. Rose Garden
Number six overall draft pick Damian Lillard is favored to
win the NBA Rookie of the Year Award, so it's only fitting that Portland's Rose
Garden has netted sixth place on PETA's list, thanks to a variety of options like
veggie burgers, vegan protein shakes, vegetable sandwiches, a broccoli stir-fry
with rice or noodles, and granola with berries, bananas, and vegan protein
powder at concession stands—plus, stir-fried soy strips with pineapple and
teriyaki sauce in the suites.
7. United Center
Derrick Rose may not be returning any time soon, but the
delicious meat-free fare at the United Center gives Bulls fans plenty to smile about. A vegan tempeh sloppy Joe, a
veggie burger, and a baked potato lead the charge.
8. AT&T Center
For yet another year, the Spurs find themselves with one of
the best records in the NBA, and now they can tout another accomplishment: earning
a spot on PETA's top 10 list. It's fitting that familiar favorites, including
bean burritos and tacos, vegan apple turnovers, and, in premium areas, vegan
sloppy Joes, would be found at the home of the veteran team.
9. Bankers Life Fieldhouse
Indiana's faithful should be proud, as suffocating defense
and physical play have kept the Pacers in the mix in the East, even without
leading scorer Danny Granger. Another source of pride? Bankers Life Fieldhouse's
hearty vegan sloppy Joes, veggie burgers, and garden-fresh salads, which have
animal-friendly fans swarming to the concession stands just as their Pacers
swarm to the ball.
10. The Palace of Auburn Hills
We know that the days of violence at The Palace of Auburn Hills are
behind us, so if you're a Pistons fan, why not indulge in some cruelty-free
fare, including vegan sloppy Joes, fresh fruit, smoothies made with soy milk,
and quinoa-and-lentil salads? Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond clearly have
bright futures ahead of them, and Pistons fans can, too, thanks to healthy and
delicious meat-free meals.
in mind that we've just mentioned a small sampling of the vegetarian food being
offered—and that these arenas are just the best of the best. Many other venues
also offer a wide variety of vegetarian options, including honorable mention
awardees Madison Square
Garden (falafel, veggie sushi, edamame), Philips Arena (vegan sloppy Joes, pasta, baked potato), Time Warner Cable Arena (lentil veggie burger, grilled vegetable kebab, vegetarian
panini), Sleep Train
Arena (vegan sloppy Joes and veggie burgers), and Amway
Center (vegan sloppy Joes and veggie burgers).
No matter which team gets your blood pumping, you can help make
sure that you're around to cheer them on for many years to come by choosing
healthy vegetarian snacks. To paraphrase vegan NBA champ John Salley, it's the best damn way to eat. Period.
Written by PETA
On Saturday, a bat found his or her way into the San Antonio Spurs game. (Some speculate that the animal didn't just fly in by accident.) The bat, of course, did what anybody would do in such a terrifying, unfamiliar situation—try to get the heck out of there—which, naturally, delayed the game. Until, that is, Spurs guard Manu Ginobili smacked the bat out of the air and slammed the animal into the hardwood court. Sports blogs across the 'net have been replaying the video of Manu in action as they celebrate his quick reflexes.
Here's our take on it:
To bludgeon a 4-ounce animal to death, it takes either a small man or a totally unthinking one—with no respect or consideration for lives humbler than his own. This is a time when athletes in particular need to be on their best behavior around any animal and show that they have brains and a heart, not just reactionary brawn.
Bats always try to avoid contact with humans, and there are plenty of easy ways to keep bats out of a basketball arena (or your home). We hope that the next time someone's life is on the line, Manu Ginobili will take just a few seconds to think before he acts.
Written by Amanda Schinke
In case you forgot how smart, social, and absolutely adorable pigs are, meet Sherlock. Found wandering down a rural road in Suffolk, Virginia, this little guy was captured and taken to the local animal shelter:
When he was found, Sherlock was still a baby, but he was already castrated and his tail had obviously been docked. That means that this plucky little piglet likely fell off a truck headed to a growing/finishing barn—which is what the piggy flesh industry calls the factories that are used to fatten up little pigs like Sherlock for slaughter. On factory farms, piglets are taken away from their moms when they are less than 1 month old. Workers cut off their tails, clip their teeth with pliers, and castrate the males—all without painkillers. The animals spend their entire lives in extremely crowded pens on tiny slabs of filthy concrete. It gets even more heartbreaking when you factor in the abuse that these animals face: A recent undercover investigation of an Iowa pig factory farm, which supplies piglets to Hormel, documented that workers beat pigs with metal rods and sexually abused them with canes.
When one of our fieldworkers saw the headline about Sherlock in the Suffolk paper, she immediately went to work to find this guy a wonderful home. Click here to see how Sherlock's story ends!
Written by Amy Elizabeth
It's a hazy day here on the Right Coast. As I watch leaves fall and steam rise from my soy mocha, the mood is set for a lazy (yet highly skilled) meander through gossip rags for fun stuff. Here are my faves:
Thanks for stopping by! Catch you next time, and don't forget to hug all your vegetarian friends.
Written by Missy Lane
When PETA told basketball star John Salley of an opportunity to help elephants in Chicago—the city that he helped lead to multiple victories while playing for the Bulls—he jumped at the chance.
There's currently a piece of legislation before the Chicago City Council that would ban chaining elephants. So John fired off a letter to the City Council asking it to vote "Yes" on the legislation. Salley says, "Passing this ordinance would send a powerful message to our children that mistreating other beings for entertainment is wrong. Like other cultural institutions that have caused extraordinary and unnecessary suffering (e.g., slavery, child labor, segregation), the unethical treatment and cruel chaining of elephants is an American tradition that should be relegated to the history books." So as John states in his letter, let's hope that the city of Chicago will seize the opportunity "to take the lead in this noble cause." After giving us our president-elect, the city has the chance once again to make history. Come on, Chicago!
Posted by Melissa Lane
While on the mend for a knee injury, University of Memphis basketball player Pierre Henderson-Niles put on a few pounds—about 70, to be precise. Temporarily stuck with a more sedentary lifestyle and still programmed to eat like the awesome athlete he was, Henderson-Niles jumped from 280 pounds to 350.
With guidance from his coach, John Calipari, he's now working hard to shed the pounds and get back his game, and we at PETA have a novel suggestion to help him manage his weight: go vegetarian.
By going vegetarian, Henderson-Niles would be aligning himself with a host of other successful athletes, including ultimate fighter Mac Danzig, NBA legend John Salley, Salim Stoudamire of the Atlanta Hawks, Kansas City Chiefs star Tony Gonzalez, and Carl Lewis, who was named "Olympian of the Century" by Sports Illustrated.
"[O]verwhelming scientific evidence shows that vegetarians are far less likely to be overweight than meat-eaters and much more likely to be in better overall health," wrote PETA Director Dan Shannon. "While lots of grease might be required to tame Coach Calipari's hair, choking down greasy chicken and ribs just makes people fat and causes heart disease." You can read Dan's full letter here.
Written by Sean Conner
It's time once again for my favorite PETA Files feature: our Vivisector of the Month contest. Each and every month, I read up on two of our nation's most vile vivisectors and let you, our dear readers, decide who is the worst by voting.
Let me begin by recognizing Marina Picciotto, whose primate addiction studies and mouse torture won her the undesirable title of Most Vile Vivisector last month. Her competitor was much-derided Allyson Bennett. Congrats, Marina—I'm certain Yale and all of New Haven are glad to have you!
This month, we have another two truly bizarre candidates … just see for yourself.
David Gozal of the Kosair Children's Hospital Research Institute in Louisville has a bit of a problem. He is fascinated by erections—mouse erections, to be exact. He passes his days in the lab getting up close and very personal with little boy-mice, studying their erections and even severing their spinal cords so that they cannot move while experimenters observe their penises.
In his most recent study, "Erectile Dysfunction in a Murine [Mouse] Model of Sleep Apnea," which was funded in part by the federal government, Gozal measured the number of erections and ejaculations in dozens of mice after placing them in a chamber to deprive them of oxygen. Some mice were also given tadalafil, an erectile dysfunction drug. They were then killed by puncturing their hearts with a needle, and their testicles and penises were cut out of their bodies for examination. Gozal concluded that oxygen deprivation makes it more difficult to get an erection and that tadalafil, which is already prescribed (as “Cialis”) for humans with erectile dysfunction, works in mice.
Daniel Traber of the University of Texas Medical Branch Department of Anesthesiology has made a living for almost three decades by burning animals' skin off. In a recent experiment, he either torched mice with a Bunsen burner until more than 40 percent of their bodies was charred or forced them to inhale smoke. A few select mice got the full treatment—they were both burned and forced to inhale smoke. Some died during the experiment, and survivors were subsequently killed.
In another study, Traber heated an aluminum bar to nearly 400 degrees with a Bunsen burner and roasted the skin of live pigs on it for 30 seconds, creating a series of deep burns that covered 15 percent of their bodies. In order to repair the deliberately injured animals, Traber and colleagues then removed skin from the pigs' legs to graft over the areas that had been burned off. After living through all this torture, the pigs were killed. Again, this is only his most recent work—Traber has been burning, mutilating, and killing sheep for years.
Who should win? The Children's Hospital Vivisector or the Bunsen Burninator? As always, let me help you decide by posing a question: Would you rather be molested, stabbed in the heart, and have your genitals torn out, or would you rather be roasted alive over a Bunsen burner, forced to inhale the smell of your burning flesh, and then killed?
It's a burning question, isn't it?
Quick—who was the first NBA player to win championships with three different teams? If you said John Salley, then ... you read the title of this post. Bravo. But you know what else John Salley is? ... right. A vegetarian. That was in the title too. You know, you really could help me sell this bit a little. Anyway ...
John Salley—who earned his nickname, "The Spider," from his long-limbed defensive prowess—is the latest celebrity to star in PETA's vegetarian testimonial series. Today, the PSA will be launched at the John Muir Middle School in Los Angeles, California, where John is giving a talk to hundreds of students about his vegetarian lifestyle and PETA is providing free veggie burgers for one and all. Turtle Mountain also provided the school with 500 soy ice cream sandwiches for the event! Check out the PSA below:
When we filmed the ad a while back, I got the chance to sit down with John and pick his brain a bit. We got the important stuff out of the way when he told me that he grew up a Celtics fan—I always knew I liked the guy. He first went veg in 1991, after his fifth year in the league (he was a Detroit Piston at the time, but please don't hold that against him). John says that after making the switch, he lost 10 pounds and was still stronger than anyone else on the team (Laimbeer, I'm looking at you). From there, he went on to win powered-by-tofu NBA championships with the Bulls in '96 and with the Lakers in '00, adding those rings to the two he already won with the effing Pistons. Check out the full Q&A below:
Seventeen years later, John's still going strong, hosting The Best Damn Sports Show Period on FOX, pursuing an acting career, and oh yeah, helping to save animals with PETA. So the next time someone asks you, "Aren't vegetarians worried about not having enough vitamin Q?" or whatever, just say, "Actually, we're more worried about not having enough fingers for all our RINGS, yo!"
Here are some photos from the launch event:
Posted by Dan Shannon
Rick Dutrow is Big Brown's trainer, who was M.I.A. during the congressional hearings. It seems the Kentucky Horse Racing Authority found one of his horses, Salute the Count, with the highest level of clenbuterol (a bronchial dialator that also functions as a steroid) that the chief steward had seen in four years—more than twice the allowable level.
Dutrow is being suspended for a mere 15 days and will have to return the $20,000 that he made off drugging and racing Salute the Count at the race where he was tested. In his defense, he was quoted as saying that he uses this on many of his horses and has only once had a problem with it.
If that wasn't enough, jockey Jeremy Rose was recently suspended for "engag[ing] in extreme misuse of the whip" on his horse, Appeal to the City, according to this Blood-Horse article. I was not aware that there were proper and acceptable uses for whips on animals—only on humans.
Rose has been suspended (in Delaware only) for six months and will have to pay veterinary bills for the animal, which include treatment for hemorrhaging around his eye from being whipped in the face. Even though it's not as good as being permanently banned from contact with horses, Rose's relatively stiff sentence—virtually unheard of in the history of horseracing—shows that outside pressure is seriously having an effect on state regulatory bodies.
However, in the absence of an overarching federal body to oversee horseracing, the suspensions of Rose and Dutrow will only be effective in Delaware and Kentucky, respectively. They can still train, mount, drug, or whip horses elsewhere.
Posted by Sean Conner
Case in point: This past weekend, Austin was home to the second annual veggie-hot-dog–eating contest, organized by iLoveMikeLitt. Now, last year, we bemoaned missing the first-annual (well, first-ever at that point) contest. So imagine how I feel about missing this year's event, since Austin's a mere three-hour drive from my home in Houston (slogan: "Houston's great—no, really!").
Somehow they managed to carry on without me, though. In fact, nearly 300 folks showed up—including Austin's famed vegan firefighters—to polish off 1,500 LightLife Tofu Pups, along with 14 gallons of vegan ice cream from Austin's own NadaMoo. In the solo contest, Spencer "Tree" Lockwood ate 21 hot dogs to narrowly edge out last year's solo champ, Colin "The Tim Duncan of Competitive Eating" Kalmbacher, whose sentiments captured the quintessentially Austin nature of the whole event:
What is more Austin than a bunch of vegans, vegetarians, and omnivores, all alongside each other, gorging themselves on hundreds of soy dogs for the sheer insanity of it?
Indeed. If you're an Austinite (Austinian?), be sure to sign up for the iLoveMikeLitt event newsletter so that you don't miss out on next year's contest—or other fun stuff like Vegan Arm Wrestling and Veggie Speed Dating. Those of us living in less "weird" places can still get in on the fun—I'm staging my own vegan hot-dog–eating party for the Fourth of July (though, so far, it's just me and my soy-loving hound, Gus). Our resident foodies have picked their favorites, but I'm interested to know what you'll have on the grill over the holiday. Fire it up!
Posted by Jeff Mackey
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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.