Written by PETA
Indonesian bachelor Sumanto really digs older women. Digs them up, that is. Yes, I'm talking about corpses, not cougars.
According to news reports, Sumanto dug up a grave and feasted on the flesh of an old woman's corpse for a "cheap and tasty meal." Fresh out of prison after serving time for this crime, he's promised that his people-eating days are over, vowing that he now just wants to "taste love" (I wonder if that's what he'll put on his Match.com profile). While his neighbors are giving him the cold shoulder, the kind folks at PETA Asia-Pacific are willing to offer him a hand in kicking corpse cuisine for good.
Instead of turning over a new grave, they're suggesting that Sumanto turn over a new leaf and go vegetarian. Like humans, animals are made of flesh, blood, and bone. They have the same capacity to love, and they experience fear in the face of death. When animals die, their families grieve too. To help with this transition, PETA Asia-Pacific is sending Sumanto a copy of The Compassionate Cook, PETA's first vegetarian cookbook, which is chock-full of "cheap and tasty" meals that won't cost him or anyone else an arm and a leg.
I highly recommend the Mock Chopped Liver, a dish that tastes so much like the real thing that it could fool even the most die-hard cannibals.
Written by Amy Elizabeth
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?
Written by Sean Conner
Yesterday, we mentioned an advertisement that we wanted to run in a Canadian newspaper in the wake of a shocking stabbing murder and possible cannibalism in Manitoba. Countless people have contacted us with their concerns, so we'd like to explain why we wanted to run the ad that no newspaper will touch with a 10' pole.
Yes, of course we were horrified (who wouldn't be?) when we heard the details of this barbaric, incomprehensible killing. And obviously, everyone's good thoughts go out to anyone affected by this violent act. That's all a no-brainer. Now, remember, PETA is known for being provocative—that's our job. The animals don't benefit from our silence. So our thought is always: How can we get people to see that despite their feelings about this kind of violence, they are often paying someone to do exactly what was done to the man on the bus, and worse, just so that they can eat a sandwich? Voila, the ad!
We see parallels between acts of violence against humans and cruelty to animals, since both spring from a common root. We understand that such comparisons may be uncomfortable for many people, but they're not inaccurate.
Responding to violence with anger is also natural, but just being angry solves nothing, does it? Real change comes about when we channel anger or sadness into action. By juxtaposing the shocking details of the murder with the fate of animals whose bodies are casually hacked apart to end up between two slices of bread, some good will come. Already, thousands of people have visited our site not just to scream at us but also to read about slaughterhouses, and many have watched "Meat Your Meat." If you can sit through that and not see the truth in what we are saying, what can we say?
Like humans, animals are made of flesh, blood, and bone. Animals in slaughterhouses experience terror in the face of death. They fight for their lives and struggle to avoid pain. Birds love and grieve. In light of animals' suffering, we are urging people to embrace nonviolence in the face of senseless violence—against all beings—by going vegetarian. If someone doesn't like it, maybe it is because it makes them feel guilty for just saying, "Oh, how terrible," about the bus violence but not wanting to face the fact that they contribute to violence as well. To think otherwise is simply supremacist.
You know what it's like—you get started with something, thinking you'll have just this one or do it just this once, and then you think, "One more wouldn't hurt, right?" And before you know it, it's all out of hand.
Of course, when I do it, I end up eating half a package of Newman-Os, not egging 400 people's houses and cars.
That's right—a couple in Pennsylvania have recently been charged with perpetrating an 18-month "egging spree" that resulted in $7,000 worth of damage.
This news article explains that the couple started egging because they "wanted to retaliate against friends for damages they said were inflicted upon them" but moved on to other targets to avoid suspicion.
Hate to break it to you (geddit?), but 400 targets might arouse a little suspicion, don't you think?
Now, the county's district attorney is urging the victims of the spree to come forward, saying, "We have an obligation under the law to seek to make them whole and to get restitution for them."
Sure, the people who had to wash their cars and hose down their driveways deserve "restitution." But let's take this further: What is washing your car compared to being crammed into battery cages and having your beak cut off with a hot wire?
When you think about it that way, aren't the hens the number one victims here?
We think that all the victims of this crime deserve restitution. For this reason, we've written a letter to the DA with a logical suggestion: It takes up to 34 hours for a hen to produce a single egg, and during that time, she isn't watching TV—she's crammed into a cage that doesn't allow her to take a step or stretch one wing, and she has to balance on wire and do her business on the backs of other birds. If the DA has an "obligation" to "get restitution" for the victims of this crime, wouldn't justice best be served by sentencing the perpetrators to 34 hours of community service in a vegan soup kitchen or doing bird rescues for each egg wasted? We think so!
Check out our letter to the DA:
With the opening ceremonies of the 29th Olympiad just days away, our friends at PETA Asia-Pacific decided to get into the spirit of the games by awarding gold, silver, and bronze honors to Beijing's top vegetarian restaurants.
I know what you're thinking: vegetarian restaurants in China?!? Yes, my friends, it's true, but we really shouldn't be so surprised. After all, the Chinese gave the world tofu, that wonderful high-protein, versatile ingredient that can be used in everything from chocolate mousse pie to faux-ricotta lasagne (if you're still wrestling with tofu, check out our guide to vegetarian cooking).
And now with a drum roll, here are the top vegetarian restaurants in Beijing, as determined by PETA Asia-Pacific:
Gold: Taking the gold is Godly Vegetarian Restaurant. Beijing's oldest Buddhist vegetarian restaurant specializes in Chinese traditional classics, including KingKong HuoFang (stewed mock pork), sweet and sour mock ribs and fish, mock meatballs, mock duck, and much more.
Silver: Pure Lotus Vegetarian Restaurant—run by Tibetan monks—netted the silver. Voted "Best Vegetarian Fare" in the 2007 Beijing Reader Restaurant Awards, this restaurant serves up creatively named dishes such as "hot tears fill the eyes glazed noodles" and "countenance of mercy, words of love stir-fry." Yummy food with a side of zen.
Bronze: Coming in with the bronze is Still Thoughts, a relaxing and intimate oasis of vegetarian calm amidst a bustling alley in the heart of the city. Favorites include the spicy mock-pork intestines dry pot (testament to the fact that for any cruel and weird thing that humans would consider eating, human ingenuity can create a cruelty-free option!), shredded veggie-duck pancakes, and the faux-chicken hot pot.
And on a kinda-sorta related note, here are gold, silver, and bronze naked ladies! They are drawing attention to cruel practices on Chinese fur farms just in time for the Olympic Games:
So, Megan Webb has been crowned the 2008 West Virginia Beef Queen by the West Virginia Cattlemen's Association, and PETA has sent her a letter making it very clear that we've got "beef" with the Mistress of Meat.
We have invited the Beef Queen (I just can't get enough of that title!) to take a page out of our "Vegetarian Starter Kit"—and make the switch to a healthy, humane diet rather than promote cruelty to animals, environmental destruction, and life-threatening diseases—or take on one of our Lettuce Ladies in a tofu-wrestling match.
This earlier bout between a PETA member and a Playboy model will give you an idea of how the beef vs. lettuce throwdown might go:
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And the prizes for the wrestling match aren't too shabby either. We've found a reformed rancher who is offering to donate $5,000 to a mutually acceptable charity of the winner's choosing. We've also agreed to let the winner design a meal for the loser. (Yes, we're that confident our Lettuce Lady will win.) And perhaps best of all, the winner will get bragging rights.
Check out the full letter here.
As though it were a gruesome scene in a horror movie, a Canadian Greyhound passenger found himself in the hands of a highly disturbed man this past weekend while en route from Edmonton to Winnipeg. Passengers riding the bus reported that Vince Weiguang Li jumped on top of 22-year-old Tim McLean and began stabbing him repeatedly before cutting off his head and allegedly consuming some of his flesh. Parts of McLean's ear, nose, and mouth were found in Li's pocket.
This tragic incident will certainly leave scars on the minds of the other passengers and the victim's family and friends. While it isn't every day that a human is violently attacked and eaten by another human, it's worth noting that it is the norm for many people not to give any thought to the fact that restaurants are serving flesh that comes from innocents who were minding their own business before someone came after them with a knife. How amazingly and conveniently compartmentalized the human mind is…
To stress this very point, PETA will be running an ad in the Portage Daily Graphic comparing the similarities between this gruesome bus butchering and the acts of cruelty and killing performed every day by the meat industry.
The horror that cows, chickens, and pigs face on factory farms goes on for a long time too. Chickens are violently tossed into cages with dozens of other birds and forced to live amid their own waste. Baby pigs have their testicles ripped out without any painkillers. And male calves are starved and chained inside tiny stalls until their flesh becomes soft and milky white before being slaughtered for someone's veal dinner.
PETA is running the ad to make people rethink the proposition that it is, rightly so, a criminal act to kill and eat our own kind but that it's "OK" to kill every other species but our own and eat them.
Amanda Beard, the incredibly gorgeous U.S. swimmer, has posed naked for a brand-new anti-fur ad, just as the Olympics are about to kick-off in Beijing.The Olympic gold medalist unveiled the stunning "Be Comfortable in Your Own Skin" ad just hours after Beijing officials stopped her from holding a news conference, reportedly for "safety" reasons. Hmm, what’s so dangerous about a naked lady?! So the swimmer simply moved her location and revealed the stunning ad to a swarm of reporters and TV cameras elsewhere. Given that Beijing is hosting the Summer Olympic Games this year and the horrific conditions that have been documented on Chinese fur farms, now is a great time to remind folks that animals grow fur to protect themselves from the elements, not to cover 100-lb. fashionistas from paparazzi camera flashes. The ad shows that she's comfortable in her own skin and doesn't need to steal anyone else's. During the shoot Amanda sat down with us and explained: "I'd much rather go naked than ever put a dead animal on my body." Well said, Amanda!You can get on board by signing our pledge to go fur-free pledge.Photos from Amanda's unveiling in Beijing:
There's a lot of buzz on the interwebs about Eva Mendes' Calvin Klein ad that showed so much skin, it's been banned from U.S. television.I just wanted to remind the world that before Eva revealed her smoldering body for CK (a designer who WON'T use fur, by the way), she bared it all for the animals. How hot is Eva?!?!Not only do PETA and CK share a friendship with Eva and a dislike of fur—PETA has also had one or two ads banned from TV in our day. Heck, who are we kidding—we’ve had dozens. View our favorite banned ads here!
An Excerpt From "Grooming Sounds Grand Until Bowser Gets Baked" (From KP's Dog Blog)
Many people saw the grooming exposé "Pet Grooming Dangers," on the Today show on August 1, which was prompted by the grooming death of Sushi, the 2-year-old Labrador retriever of one of the Today show's employees. Sushi had been left for a week at a boarding facility and was supposed to get a bath before being picked up. When her guardian, Amanda, arrived to pick her up, instead of the thrill of a joyful reunion, she experienced the horror of learning that Sushi was unconscious. Not long after that, Sushi died at the vet's. Later it was determined that Sushi had been put inside a "cage dryer" for 30 minutes with the temperature set at 100°F.
I took one look at those dryers in the Today piece and shuddered. I couldn't believe my ears as I watched person after person, including someone from The Humane Society of the United States repeat some version of the mantra, "These cage dryers are safe if used properly."
Excuse me? First of all, the cage dryer has a setting that goes up to 100°F, so it has a built-in setting for death. Secondly, machines malfunction. A groomer might think that the dryer was set at 80°F, but in reality, it might go haywire and shoot up to 100°F or even 135°F. Thirdly, there are many dogs who, for various reasons, are automatically going to be at high risk inside one of these contraptions. These include dogs with flat muzzles, older dogs, dogs with heart problems, dogs with respiratory problems, etc. Finally, the dryers are run by mere mortals, who work for a largely unregulated industry. On any given day, a person can be distracted, tired, hung over, ill, depressed, or just plain stupid—any of which could cause a careless mistake, leading to tragedy…
Read the full entry on KP's Dog Blog.
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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.