Written by PETA
Some people don't eat animals because they don't want to support factory farming. Others are worried about protecting their health or the environment. Nicolas Cage has a much more, shall we say, X-centric reason for why he leaves certain animals off his plate: They have undignified sex.
No, I am not making this up. Here's what Cage told the U.K. tabloid The Sun: "I actually choose the way I eat according to the way animals have sex. I think fish are very dignified with sex. So are birds. But pigs, not so much. So I don't eat pig meat or things like that. I eat fish and fowl."
While this is great news for pigs and cows, I have to wonder where Nick got the idea that there is anything dignified about the way birds live on factory farms. Turkeys are bred to grow so top-heavy that they can no longer reproduce naturally, so female turkeys are artificially inseminated. "Breeder broiler" chickens are kept alive longer than most chickens who are raised for their flesh (most of whom are killed when they are just a few weeks old), so the males are deprived of food to prevent their bodies from getting too large for their organs to support. How do farmers do this? By shoving plastic rods through their beaks to prevent them from gaining access to females' feed troughs. Yeah, real dignified.
As for me, I'm not particularly concerned about how birds, bees, or even educated fleas do it. I'm more worried about making sure that animals have a dignified life—and death.
Written by Alisa Mullins
The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is a disaster for both human and nonhuman residents, but there may prove to be a silver lining. With the government's recent announcement that fishing is banned in 19 percent of the Gulf, there's no time like the present for Johnson Sea Products to convert its crab and oyster-processing facility to a faux-seafood packaging facility.
Johnson Sea Products could protect itself from shutdowns because of oil spills, red tides, and overfishing, and the switch would help the company tap into the rapidly growing market for vegan food. To sweeten salt up the deal, we're even offering to cater a delicious faux-seafood meal for the employees so that they can see how great it is (and it'll give the out-of-work employees a free meal too).
No need to wait Johnson Sea Products' response. You can protect millions of turtles, dolphins, and other aquatic animals from being killed as "bycatch" by commercial fishers by going vegan.
Written by Jeff Mackey
Just about everyone is badmouthing KFC's vile new Double Down sandwich. (Gee, wonder why?) Guess which celebrity just called it the "double bypass" and said, "I just don't see a need for it, it's like handing people a gun"?
Check out the CNN clip for the answer.
Written by Heather Moore
OK, so the weekend's almost here, but if you need a little something to get you through the workday, jump on over to Facebook to check out our new game, Shivering Kittens.
Don't let the sad-sounding name throw you. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to rescue the chilly kitties from a frigid fate—and invite your friends to join in. As a bonus, they'll learn a bit about how to help protect cats here in the real world. Gameplay is simplicity itself (think Tetris with a twist), and the grateful felines will even give you a thankful "meow" when you help them out of their predicament. Who knows? Trying to beat my high score of 134 saved kittens could even inspire you to spend the rest of your weekend—or your life—being a champion for animals!
By now, we all know what a sea kitten is—or do we?
If you're baffled by the term, you must be a new PETA Files reader (welcome!). PETA's been campaigning for sea kittens for years, but there are still some people who look at us glassy-eyed when we mention these adorable animals, which is why we are asking Merriam-Webster to add an entry for "sea kitten" to its popular dictionaries. That way, anyone who hears the term "sea kittens" will know that they are smart, social, and sensitive animals who deserve our respect and compassion—instead of being hooked, netted, and suffocated.
While we're waiting to see if "sea kitten" makes the cut for the latest editions of the dictionary, you can help make people aware of sea kittens and how to help them with one of our fab "Eat No Sea Kitten" T-shirts!
The last sardine cannery in the U.S. (located in Prospect Harbor, Maine) is about to close its doors, which is great news for the tiniest fish sea kittens. But another company that cuts up and packages lobsters and other sea animals wants to buy the cannery. As we all know, marine animals suffer when they are snagged on hooks, crushed in massive nets, pulled up from their ocean homes, and even boiled alive. Talk about news that'll make your Monday blue.
PETA is urging Maine Gov. John Baldacci to "can the cruelty" and turn the plant into a blueberry cannery instead. Maine produces a quarter of the country's blueberries, so switching to that business would support the local economy and let the cannery workers keep their jobs—not to mention save the lives of countless lobsters and other sea animals. Let's hope Gov. Baldacci says, "Can we do it? Yes we can (blueberries)!"
Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post
The tables may have turned on a German angler recently. A man ended up with fishing hooks in his rear end after he apparently broke into a hunting and fishing store and fell on the hooks. Police were able to reel him in quickly because he was drunk (shocking, I know) and couldn't run very fast with barbed hooks in his behind.
How's that for karma? Hopefully he'll think twice about picking up a rod and reel now that he knows how much hooks hurt! Or will he need a few through his lips first?
As if overfishing, cruelty, and mercury poisoning weren't enough, here's yet another reason to leave fish off your plate: ciguatera poisoning. Apparently, one of the many unforeseen effects of climate change is the spread of ciguatera, a toxin produced by an organism that grows on coral reefs. Common in large, predatory fish such as snapper, grouper, and barracuda, ciguatera was once confined mostly to the Caribbean, but it has now spread to the waters off Florida, Texas, and the Carolinas and has become one of the most common causes of fish-related food poisoning in the U.S.
Along with the usual nasty symptoms of food poisoning—nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, fever, and diarrhea—ciguatera also causes bizarre neurological symptoms worthy of a House episode: numbness, tingling, needle-like pain in the hands and feet, a burning sensation in the mouth and throat, and sometimes an irregular heartbeat. Ciguatera probably won't kill you, but there is no effective treatment and the symptoms can persist for weeks, months, or even years. Call it "barrakarma."
We've been saying for years that fishing kills. Remember this oldie-but-goodie tuna can sticker?
Need another reason not to eat fish sea kittens? A new survey reveals that over the past two decades, millions (yes, millions) of turtles have died after becoming ensnared in fishing gear.
Turtles are intelligent, sensitive animals who are pretty helpless to defend themselves—and we can all agree that this is a good reason not to kill them. So if you wouldn't kill a turtle, why would you kill a fish? Fish are complex, clever, and just as sensitive to pain as turtles are, yet the commercial fishing industry kills them by the billions each year—not for fun but because people buy its products.
The easiest way to save sea turtles (and dolphins and fish)? Go vegan.
Written by Logan Scherer
Have you tuned in to Life yet? Not to be confused with the delicious cereal of the same name or the painfully long bored game, Life is actually a 10-part documentary series that premiered on the Discovery Channel on March 21 and chronicles the complex lives of different species—from komodo dragons to cuttlefish, damselflies to pebble toads. Every episode is narrated by Oprah (could she get any cooler?), and each one has opened my eyes to so many fascinating facts about animals. Last Sunday's installment featured some aerially and aquatically nimble flying fish and resourceful anchovies. The highlight, though, was this unforgettable sequence of mud-wrestling mudskippers:
The two segments airing this Sunday are "Birds" and "Creatures of the Deep." I'm willing to bet that after you watch this preview about bowerbirds, you too will be tuning in to see which male's interior decorating skills are going to win him a mate. I know I will.
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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.