Written by PETA
A lobster in the U.K. didn't get the death penalty, but he did get 30 years to life. A 3-foot-long lobster was caught by an angler fishing for sole off the British coast in West Sussex. The lobster is believed to be around 50 years old and is one is of the biggest and oldest lobsters ever caught in Britain.
He was "rescued" from the garlic butter and sent to live the rest of his potentially 80-year lifespan in captivity at the Blue Reef Aquarium in Portsmouth, England. Somehow, I don't think that he's happy about the move.
Did we learn nothing at all from Sebastian of Little Mermaid fame? "Darling, it's better down where it's wetter, under the sea."
Written by Michelle Sherrow
File this one under "What were they thinking?" The Lobster Zone, found in some bars and restaurants, is similar to traditional arcade claw games—except instead of trying to win stuffed animals, players vie for live lobsters. Lobsters who don't escape the mechanical claw are dropped down a chute and boiled alive for the winner's dinner.
Not surprisingly, as soon as restaurants install this gimmicky game, complaints start pouring in. After hearing from PETA about complaints made by customers, Ohio's Upper Deck restaurant gave its Lobster Zone machine the boot. In California, following a protest by Orange County People for Animals, the Beach Club Sports Bar & Grill also removed the game.
Lobsters can feel pain, as all animals do, and as a local California paper put it, "[M]aking a game out of any creature's death is unsettling and certainly the wrong message to send to children." If you see one of these cruel games in your town, please take action! Contact PETA at ActionTeam@peta.org for assistance.
Written by Paula Moore
Long before I kicked animal flesh out of my diet, I celebrated my birthdays by eating lobster.
As in, let me celebrate my birth by paying a cook to throw a fully conscious, feeling being into a pot of boiling water to scald to death for my dinner. Ugh.
No wonder my heart skips a beat whenever I read about a caring person who liberates a lobster from a filthy lobster tank so that the animal can be returned to the sea. So my heart nearly burst out of my rib cage when I read that a Slovenian tourist and his daughter bought 30 lobsters for 1,300 euros (more than US$1,860) from a Croatian hotel-restaurant called Hotel Niko in order to free them.
Thirty lobsters have been spared excruciatingly painful deaths and have been returned to the ocean.
Tonight, I'll be celebrating their release with some "Mock Lobster."
Written by Karin Bennett
Remember when we told you about the 140-year-old, 20-pound lobster confined to a tank inside New York restaurant City Crab and Seafood? Well, after initially denying PETA's request to release the ancient crustacean, the good folks at City Crab have had a change of heart and have agreed to send the lucky lobster back home—i.e., into the sea. (Yay!)
City Crab and PETA are hosting a bon voyage event to see off the lobster, who will be sent back to a watery habitat in style. Pretty exciting if you ask me! Next step: ban catching lobsters completely. Lobsters don't deserve to be pulled from their ocean home and kept in tiny tanks in their own waste and then boiled alive.
A huge "thank you" goes out to City Crab for this compassionate decision. To celebrate this victory for lobsters everywhere, I encourage you to try our recipe for mock lobster.
PS If you want to become a "lobster libber" and help liberate lobsters in your hometown, check out our suggestions for how you can get active here.
PPS You know how life sometimes imitates art? Click here to see just how true that really is.
Written by Liz Graffeo
Without letting even the tiniest opportunity to help nonhuman animals swim by, my inventive comrades have devised a delightful new stratagem to help free some of our sea-dwelling sisters and brothers.
The Pitch: To open the world's fist-ever Lobster Empathy Center in the lobster-execution capital of the world (Creative, yes?) The Setting: A prison (Bloody genius!)
The proposed attraction would include wrapping visitors' hands in giant rubber bands for the duration of their stay, serving faux-lobster treats, and giving kiddies free stuffed toy lobsters labeled "Lobsters Are Friends, Not Food."
Can't wait to go, right? I know, me neither! Sadly, our dreams will have to be put on hold for a bit, as the prison was just sold to the highest bidder. But do keep us in mind if you hear of any sweet oceanfront prison property up for grabs!
Now if all this talk has given you a hankering for some vegan lobster tail, here's a recipe to satisfy your urgings.
People will cling on to the most unlikely notions if it means that they can keep doing something they enjoy but know deep down is wrong. And sad as it is to say, there are going to be people who continue to ignore or deny the fact that crustaceans feel pain despite mountains of evidence that this is the case—including the study published in New Scientist today, which shows that lobsters, crabs, and other crustaceans all share pain sensitivity. Which means (just in case anyone needs this spelled out) that cramming them into pots of boiling water while they’re still alive should be a jailable offense. Literally. We prosecute people for equivalent cruelty to cats or dogs, so a lobster bake shouldn’t be any different.
Setting that aside for a second, I hate the fact that this study was ever done in the first place. The notion of a bunch of grown men and women in labcoats prodding lobsters to see if they react and then pompously announcing to the scientific community, that “yes, they do react,” would frankly be laughable if it weren’t for the fact that these animals suffered to prove what we all know intuitively already: That there’s something horribly wrong with the way we treat these animals, and that no matter how much someone might enjoy the taste of lobster, there is simply no way to justify torturing a living being for the sake of a palate preference.
If you haven’t read it yet, you should definitely check out the essay Consider the Lobster, by David Foster Wallace (who happens, incidentally, to be my favorite living author). It’s a fascinating analysis of the ethics related to this issue from the point of view of someone who had never given it any thought at all, until he was assigned to write about a lobster festival for Gourmet magazine. You can find that here.
"Everything that is alive is going to die someday (even you). What matters is the quality of life while something is alive. The fact that food animals are going to eventually die to feed humans doesn't mean that the quality of their lives is therefore irrelevant and should be ignored (since you are also mortal does the quality of your own life not matter either?). Quite the opposite. All sentient beings are worthy of being treated with respect and consideration IMO and that includes lobsters. Minimizing their pain is a worthy and admirable goal IMO. I admire Whole Foods for having animal welfare standards and for continually evolving them--and their ban on selling live lobsters is another positive evolutionary step on behalf of animals. . . .”
Amazing. You can check out the full story here.
Earlier this week, a customer of Raley's—which is a popular grocery chain in Nevada, New Mexico, and California—sent PETA disturbing pictures of live lobsters kept in tiny plastic containers barely larger than the lobsters' bodies in a Raley's store. After PETA put an action alert up on our site last night, thousands of people wrote to the company to ask that they abandon this cruel practice immediately and consider following in the footsteps of chains like Safeway and Whole Foods and discontinue the sale of live lobsters entirely.
This morning, we received an e-mail from Raley's announcing that the company would do just that! Raley's Spokesperson Nicole Townsend gave PETA the following statement:
Raley’s Family of Fine Stores offered live Maine lobsters to our customers for three days during the holiday season. Raley's will not repeat this promotion or offer live lobsters in any of its stores.
It goes without saying that this is a massive victory for lobsters everywhere, who suffer immeasurably in grocery-store lobster tanks before being boiled alive. Raley's compassionate decision—along with the example of Safeway and Whole Foods—sends a strong message to supermarkets everywhere that cruelty of this sort simply will not be tolerated. A huge thank you to everyone who took the time to write to Raley's about this issue! Thanks to your kindness, countless lobsters will be saved from a horrific fate.
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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.