Written by PETA
The Hawaiian word "aloha" means:
If you answered "F," you're correct—and this week the Aloha State welcomed a new law that embodies peace, mercy, love, and affection for seals. Now anyone who intentionally harasses, harms, or kills a Hawaiian monk seal—or any endangered or threatened Hawaiian species—can be charged with a class C felony and face a fine of up to $50,000 and five years in prison.
So, in Hawaii the sight of a seal waddling up the beach draws volunteers to make sure that beachgoers leave the animal in peace. In Canada, the sight of seals lying on ice floes draws hunters to bash their heads in. I'm pretty sure that this is a no-brainer, but I still have to ask: Which destination would you rather visit?
Written by Karin Bennett
The following post was originially published on PETA Prime.
Just in time for "Adopt a Shelter Cat" Month comes some great news: In an Associated Press-Petside poll, more than half of respondents said that they plan to adopt their next cat or dog from an animal shelter—that's more than seven times the number of people who say they would be likely to purchase an animal from a pet store. And with age comes wisdom, apparently—people over age 30 were the most likely to adopt an animal from a shelter.
The reasons they give are even more heartening. We're apparently getting the word out—with a little help from our friends—that pet shops usually obtain their animals from puppy mills and that these animals often suffer from a variety of physical and mental problems. By contrast, many respondents say that shelter animals, many of whom are mixed breeds, are less likely to suffer from the congenital defects that plague purebreds.
Colton, California, resident Sandra Toro, 62, summed it up nicely: "I believe [pet shops and puppy mills] couldn't care less about the pets, they're really in it for the money. I think you are more likely to get a pet at a pet store that is ill or has problems." Toro, who is the proud guardian of a rescued mutt, went on to say that she doesn't understand how anyone can buy an animal from a pet store or breeder instead of adopting a homeless dog or cat. "There are so many wonderful pets out there that will be euthanized," she said. "There's no reason for it."
We couldn't have said it better ourselves, Sandra!
How about you? Will your next cat (or dog) come from an animal shelter or rescue group?
Written by Alisa Mullins
A new billboard in Mooresville, N.C., is doing its best to boost Bloom supermarket's beef sales by using huge fans to waft the smell of charcoal and black pepper fragrance oils (aka the store's idea of charred cow) into traffic.
PETA thinks that it's time for people in Mooresville—which is best known for its NASCAR teams—to wake up and smell the cruelty. That's why we're trying to raise a stink of our own by using the same technology to erect a realistic, slaughterhouse-inspired, stench-producing billboard nearby:
Imagine sitting in hot, rush-hour traffic while the smell of fear, rotting flesh, blood, guts, urine, and feces drifts through your car window. If that whiff of reality doesn't inspire shoppers to head to the produce aisle, I don't know what will!
My advice to Mooresville residents: Look after yourself, the environment, and animals the next time you fire up the grill for a NASCAR event. Race to the store, take a left past Bloom's meat counter, and score some Boca burgers instead. Seriously, we wouldn't steer you wrong.
Written by Amy Skylark Elizabeth
Thanks to a recent undercover investigation in which PETA revealed that the University of Utah (the U) had bought more than 100 homeless animals from animal shelters and subjected them to invasive, painful, and deadly experiments, a law was passed so that shelters in Utah are no longer required to turn animals over to laboratories. There is now only one animal shelter in the entire state—the North Utah Valley Animal Shelter (NUVAS)—that voluntarily continues to betray homeless dogs and cats by selling them to the U. The NUVAS is signing the torture-followed-by-death warrant for animals it hands over, as most are likely to suffer in the sort of archaic experiments documented by PETA's undercover investigator. A recent demonstration outside NUVAS sent the message loud and clear that this betrayal of trust cannot go on:
The demonstrators handed out leaflets to passersby, warning them about NUVAS' "pound-seizure" policy. They begged people who were surrendering animals to take their cats and dogs to a different shelter and personally rescued two surrendered cats, Angel and Libby, who might have otherwise ended up being tortured in the U's experiments. Let's keep the pressure on NUVAS and press for an end to its release of animals for experimentation.
Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post
Eating meat can be a real pain in the behind—literally. A new study from France found that women who consumed the most protein—particularly animal flesh—had nearly three times the risk of being diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). IBD includes ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, and other nasty conditions that cause severe inflammation in the digestive system and often abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, and rectal bleeding. Researchers think that meat could contribute to IBD because digesting animal flesh produces hydrogen sulfide, ammonia, and other potentially toxic "end products."
I have a gut feeling that IBS sufferers—and everyone else—would be better off switching to a diet that's kind to our digestive systems and to animals!
Here's some good news: The thoroughbred racing rag The Blood-Horse reports that the TV ratings for last weekend's Belmont Stakes (the last "jewel" in the Triple Crown) were the lowest ever in the 50 years that ratings have been tracked. Apparently, Saturday-evening TV viewers have better things to do than watch a dozen horses get flogged for a mile and a half.
In a New York Times blog post the following day, Bennett Liebman, a member of the New York Racing Association's board of directors, opined on the many reasons for "the decline of horse racing," among which, he says, are corruption, drugs, and "the use of whips on horses and the catastrophic injuries we have seen in major races," all of which "have contributed to the public perception that horse racing is a cruel sport which has little concern for the health or the safety of the horse."
I think Liebman is on to something. Do you agree that horse racing is on its last (broken) legs?
Shrek may not be the first one who comes to mind when you think of style (or hygiene), but you've got to admit, the ogre's one cool color. And even if green's not your shade, with OPI's limited-edition Shrek-inspired shades such as "Rumple's Wiggin'," "What's With the Cattitude," "Fiercely Fiona," "Ogre-the-Top Blue," "Funky Dunkey," and "Who the Shrek Are You," you're sure to find the fairytale color of your dreams.
For this week's "Win It" Wednesday, we have two of these cruelty-free nail polish sets to give away. To win, leave a comment about an animal-friendly fantasy character you root for or an evil villain you'd like to slay. My favorite animal-friendly character is Pete from Pete's Dragon. Use a character that already exists, or be creative and write your own tale. The two comments that best spin a character we want to root for or cast a villain we want destroyed will win the nail polishes.
Written by Heather Moore
Summer hasn't even officially kicked off, but the folks at the Today show were talking Thanksgiving this morning—or, rather, discussing PETA's Thanksgiving Day public service announcement (PSA), which was just named one of the "Best Commercials of the Year" by the Association of Independent Commercial Producers (AICP).
As AICP President and CEO Matt Miller noted, many networks refused to air PETA's PSA—in which an adorable young lady educates her family about the violence on turkey factory farms—but the Today show coverage ensured that millions of viewers saw and heard our "potent message" (Matt Lauer's words).
Curious and caring Today show viewers who are compelled to educate themselves about how turkeys are abused on factory farms and in slaughterhouses just might opt for Tofurky on Thanksgiving Day.
Given the escalating violence among young people, it's impossible to understand how anyone can cheer for 12-year-old bullfighter Michel Lagravere, who boasts that he has stabbed seven bulls to death. It's also disturbing that people continue to egg the young man on even after he was recently tossed around by a bull in a Mexican bullfight:
The misguided child walked away with only minor injuries, but that bull's days are still numbered. Bulls don't stand a chance in the arena—especially not when even a 12-year-old is permitted to torture them to death.
Did you know that bulls are physically harmed and provoked before they are let into the arena? They are beaten and sometimes have their horns shaved. Then, surrounded by the screaming crowd, the confused bulls will naturally fight for their lives as men on horses run them in circles and stab them with knives until the animals are dizzy and weakened from blood loss. Finally, the matador comes in for the killing stab when the exhausted bull is already near death.
Please contact Mexican Ambassador Arturo Sarukhán to politely voice your objection to bullfighting and to tell him that you won't be vacationing in Mexico until bullfights are banned for good.
Written by Jennifer O'Connor
While U.S. residents watch and worry about the oil spill, a different kind of oceanic nightmare is brewing, one that will cause immense suffering and death for countless whales for many years to come.
On June 20, the International Whaling Commission will meet in Morocco to vote on a proposal to lift a 24-year international ban on commercial whaling for Japan, Norway, and Iceland—the three countries that have pretty much thumbed their noses at the ban. The Obama administration backs the lifting of the ban. Anyone who knows anything about the history of the ban—which has slashed the killing from somewhere between 40,000 and 60,000 whales a year to between 1,200 and 1,700—is outraged that the president is going back on his election pledge to strengthen a ban and instead throwing the country's might behind lifting it.
We know some fascinating things about whales: Humpbacks create "bubble-netting" by blowing a stream of bubbles to surround their prey, and females form long-lasting friendships with each other. Many people know that sperm whales have the biggest brains of any living being, but did you know that they're able to dive more than a mile? Or that they communicate by clicking? Or that some scientists believe that sperm whales "are so self-aware that they might have begun to evolve a concept of religion."
We also know that if the whaling ban is lifted, whale families will be torn apart as more are slaughtered. Act now to help animals: Politely tell President Obama that you oppose the cruel slaughter of sentient beings. Then prove it by going vegan if you haven't already.
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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.