Written by PETA
Healthy, humane alternatives to cruelly produced dairy products continued to make headlines this week. An executive order signed earlier this year by San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom has gone into effect requiring city vending machines to be stocked with soy and rice milks in an effort to curb obesity rates and improve consumers' overall health.
Considering San Fran's healthy and humane options in vending machines and L.A.'s dairy-free delight, the "Pamela Anderson" milkshake, California almost seems like heaven on Earth. Please take a minute to thank Mayor Newsom for his decision to provide his city with healthier, humane beverages.
Written by Karin Bennett
Of course, I'm not talking about the tormented bulls—I mean the intoxicated bullies who were trampled on the second day of Pamplona's weeklong San Fermín festival. Reporters, who were apparently channeling their inner Hemingway, described the bulls as "angry," "threatening" "hulking beasts." I think those terms better describe the people who goad animals into a terrified stampede, don't you?
Maybe it's just me, but I don't see anything heroic or brave about terrorizing animals just for the thrill of it. It seems like the truly courageous people are the ones who stripped to their undies to protest Pamplona's annual exercise in stupidity and cruelty:
Now that takes some cojones.
Written by Alisa Mullins
According to a new study by researchers at The University of Auckland in New Zealand, that whole business about the ocean being a "silent world" is a bunch of bunk. Fish talk to each other all the time through growls, grunts, chirps, and pops—we just can't hear them without special equipment. Gurnards turn out to be the "Chatty Cathys" of the underwater world, talking to one another throughout the day.
My response to this "amazing" discovery? Duh!
As the "fish lady" in the PETA Foundation's Writers Group, I've been reading and writing about fish for more than a decade. I've learned that fish can count and tell time, they are fast learners, they think ahead, they have unique personalities, and they may even have a sense of humor. So I'm not at all surprised to learn that fish communicate with each other—I'd be surprised if they didn't!
The Auckland U. scientists believe that fish talk to attract mates, warn others of danger, and scare off predators. I think they're trying to tell us that "fish are friends, not food." What do you think they're saying?
Written by Paula Moore
Sometimes I consider myself a hardened PETA veteran. With each new investigation I force myself to watch, I convince myself that that I've seen the worst abuses that animals are subjected to. But then something like this new video, which was shot by an undercover worker at an Ohio dairy factory farm, hits my desk, and I am again moved to tears by the way people exploit and abuse animals:
In the video, which was recorded over the past few weeks by Mercy For Animals, workers at Conklin Dairy Farms are seen beating cows with crowbars and stabbing them with pitchforks. One worker wires a cow's nose to a metal bar and then repeatedly beats the cow with another bar as she bleeds.
These findings are similar to what PETA revealed when we went undercover at a Land O'Lakes supplier in Pennsylvania. Over the course of several months, PETA's investigation documented that cows who had trouble standing were kicked and electro-shocked. One cow's gangrenous, infected teat ruptured while she was being milked by a machine. Another cow collapsed in a deep pool of liquid manure and was left to languish there for hours as the urine and manure covered her body and coated her eyes, nose, and mouth.
The next time someone asks you, "What's wrong with eating dairy products?" tell them, "Everything!" and then show them these videos.
Please take a minute to share this investigation via e-mail, Facebook, and Twitter. Then let your friends and family know that the best way to help prevent cows from suffering these abuses is to go vegan. If you haven't already taken that leap, check out these cruelty-free alternatives to dairy foods to get started.
Update: A man who police believe to be one of the dairy farm workers who was recorded on video beating cows with crowbars and poking them with pitchforks was charged yesterday with 12 counts of cruelty to animals!
Billy Joe Gregg Jr., 25, was jailed in Mechanicsburg and was to be arraigned on Thursday. Each cruelty-to-animals charge he faces carries a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail and a $750 fine.
Written by Shawna Flavell
We're betting the dairy farm that the people of Philadelphia will be swapping out their 2 percent milk for deliciously nutritious soy milk (or rice or almond milk) after seeing this PETA public service announcement (PSA), which began airing in the Philly area yesterday:
Last September, PETA unveiled our five-month undercover investigation of a Pennsylvania-based factory dairy farm that supplies Land O'Lakes. Although we brought the abysmal conditions to Land O'Lakes' attention, the company has done nothing to address the abuse behind the butter. And the Pennsylvania legal system failed to spread any brotherly love—much less protection—to cows on dairy farms, which means that it's up to us to stop this stomach-churning cruelty.
Please pressure Land O'Lakes to implement and enforce the 12-point animal-welfare program that PETA has recommended. And, of course, it goes without saying that you should keep all dairy products out of your grocery carts, right?
Written by Amy Skylark Elizabeth
Did you know that in a period of just 12 years, from 1996 to 2008, the market for soy milk grew more than eight times over? The folks in the dairy industry know—and it's got them scared. Never ones to play fair (subsidies, anyone?), the cow exploiters are now trying to get the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to stop companies that make soy milk and other nondairy beverages from using the word "milk" on their product labels.
Heaven forbid that the word "milk" should become associated with something that's actually humane and healthy, right? At any rate, it looks like the FDA is going to ignore this insulting and time-wasting request, and it's a good thing too—who knows what the dairy pushers would go after next? Would new mothers have to buy "mammary secretion pumps"? And who wants to treat digestive upset with nondairy fluid of magnesia?
Thanks to Laura Lewis for sending this story our way.
Written by Jeff Mackey
Psst! Have your hair and your love life lost their luster?
According to Bolivian President Evo Morales, eating flesh from chickens that have been given female hormones could make men go bald and have "problems being men."
When chickens are given hormones, as they are in so many countries, it gives credibility to Morales' chrome-dome claim, and there are hard facts that eating meat causes impotence. And for another mood killer, if you catch your man rooting around in your bra drawer, it might be because he needs the support: Consuming meat and milk laced with estrogen and other hormones may contribute to the development of "moobs."
Thanks for your advice, Mr. President. For even more presidential advice on all things animal-related, pick up a copy of PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk's latest book, The PETA Practical Guide to Animal Rights.
What will it take to make California stop misleading consumers about its unhappy cows? Last fall, we filed a complaint against the California Milk Advisory Board (CMAB) for alleged false advertising, asking the Federal Trade Commission to make the CMAB end its misleading campaign, and big names like John Robbins and Ginnifer Goodwin have shown cows big love by writing to the FTC in support of our complaint. Now, PETA's latest move in the pursuit of happiness for California's cows is sure to turn heads in the state's capital:
Cows on dairy factory farms are not given much more than the numbered ear tag that's used to identify them. PETA's undercover investigation inside Land O'Lakes supplier Reitz Dairy revealed deplorable, filthy conditions for cows on the Pennsylvania farm, such as pens that were filled with deep excrement and cows who collapsed, becoming "downers," but who were not given veterinary care or put out of their misery. Yet when this information was presented in a court of law, the judge found the owners not guilty after testimony that our heartbreaking photos and video footage showed "standard practices" for the dairy industry.
Drugged, over-milked, and kept in filthy, crowded lots, the typical California cow is anything but happy. Instead of encouraging CMAB to continue misleading consumers, take a minute to contact the FTC and then save a cow by downing a tall glass of soy milk.
Written by Logan Scherer
Despite overwhelmingly sad video and photographic evidence of lame, thin, and downed cows left to suffer and die and a cow whose teat was banded and left to decay and fall off—not to mention expert testimony that all this constituted cruelty—a judge whose courtroom was packed with dairy farmers today found the owners of Reitz Dairy, a filthy Land O'Lakes supplier in Pennsylvania that PETA investigated last year, not guilty.
PETA's investigator found cows on this factory dairy farm collapsed, lame, and struggling to hobble through a deep soup of feces and urine in the perpetually filthy conditions. Cows suffering from painful infections and severe lameness were deprived of even basic care; dying cows were not even put out of their misery. PETA's video shows injured cows as they are kicked, shocked with a high-voltage electric prod, and jabbed along the spine with the open blade of a pocket knife.
A little pat of butter? PETA has brought the abysmal conditions on this farm to Land O'Lakes' attention, but the company is doing nothing to prevent such abuse and neglect on its suppliers' farms and continues to buy from Reitz Dairy.
Cows are great mothers, loyal herd members, wise, and gentle. Studies show that they will sacrifice their own interests for the benefit of the group and that they communicate in subtle ways with facial expressions that we can't even register. When they figure out a puzzle, such as how to open a tricky gate, they have a "eureka moment" and jump for joy.
Because cows cannot rely on the law to protect them, it's up to every concerned person to take a stand—to vote against cruelty with our shopping cart. As this case has vividly demonstrated, milk, cheese, and butter do not come from "happy cows" who frolic in lush green pastures. They come from miserable cows confined to crowded, muck-filled barns—cows who are forcibly impregnated, only to have their newborns yanked away from them so that humans can drink the milk that nature intended for their calves.
That's why we must continue to pressure Land O'Lakes to, at the very least, implement the 12-point animal-welfare program that PETA has recommended. And each one of us needs to "file charges" against factory farms every time we shop by refusing to purchase their ill-gotten products.
A couple of months ago, we filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) urging it to make the California Milk Advisory Board (CMAB) stop misleading consumers about the way cows on dairy farms are treated. Now, John Robbins—son of the founder of the Baskin-Robbins ice cream empire and the Pulitzer Prize–nominated author of Food Revolution—has written a letter to the FTC in support of our complaint.
"As the only son of the founder of the Baskin-Robbins ice cream empire, I was groomed from an early age to take over the family business. However, once I became aware of the tremendous suffering of cows on dairy farms, the suffering of their calves, and the devastating impact that dairy production has on the environment, I instead committed myself to working for a more compassionate and environmentally responsible world," writes Robbins, whose decision to put his father's legacy to a compassionate cause has inspired many to ditch the pus for good.
Cows in the dairy industry do not typically wander along in green pastures like the Happy Cows ads would have consumers believe. The reality for cows who are forced to produce milk for human consumption is that most are crammed into huge sheds, where they wallow in mud and feces. They are forcefully impregnated again and again only to have their babies ripped away from them shortly after birth so that their milk—which is meant for their children—can be sold in supermarkets.
Tons of people have already taken action to help cows suffering on dairy farms—won't you do the same?
Thank you soy much!
Written by Logan Scherer
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
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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.