Skip to Main Content

Compassionate Action Award for Compassionate Athletes

Written by PETA | October 20, 2008

In honor of Halloween (and our peta2 zombie protesters), let me start this out by saying, “Braaaaaains!”

Good—now that I’ve got that out of my system, we can talk about the 11 awesome professional athletes who have all agreed to donate their brains to science!

That’s right, these athletes—including six retired NFL players, among others—will all be donating their brains (post mortem, of course) to a study headed (tee hee) by the Sports Legacy Institute and Boston University. The study will use these oft-concussed brains to determine if there is a definite link between concussions and traumatic encephalopathy.

You might know traumatic encephalopathy better as “punch-drunk syndrome,” or “boxer’s dementia.” Dementia and parkinsonism have long been linked to repeated concussions—such as those suffered by boxers or football players—and this study will further explore this relationship.

Sadly, studies like this often inflict head trauma on primates—only to kill them shortly afterwards—in order to simulate concussions in human brains! That’s why these athletes’ donations are so valuable—by donating their brains, these athletes have spared countless animals from suffering the torture of enduring repeated traumatic injuries. Their brains, by the simple nature of being human brains, will also provide science with much more reliable and conclusive results than any an animal test could provide.

That’s why PETA is presenting these athletes with our Compassionate Action Award! Each athlete will receive a framed certificate and letter of appreciation—and the unspoken thanks of all the animals who will not have to suffer in the name of “science.”

The awards go to retired NFL players Isaiah Kacyvenski, Ted Johnson, Frank Wycheck, Ben Lynch, Bernie Parrish, and Bruce Laird; former U.S. Olympic swimmer Jenny Thompson; Florida Panthers hockey player Noah Welch; former U.S. Women’s National Soccer team player Cindy Parlow; former boxer Maurice “Termite” Watkins; and last, but not least, Sports Legacy Institute founder, former Harvard football player, and former professional wrestler Chris Nowinski.

Written by Amanda Schinke

Commenting is closed.
  • Wanda Perry says:

    I would donate my body if they would release the animals they would of used to a sanctuary.

  • lynda downie says:

    I think it’s a great move by these athletes and by Peta for recognizing them for it. Also good going Mike Q.

  • Jess says:

    After seeing the Body World exhibit in Boston my Dad told me he would donate his body to science after death as long as they don’t “make me look ugly.” Ok Dad but you won’t really notice lol. Again humans and animals have different anatomy and physiology some aspects might be the same however our bodies are too different to look at one species and view it’s physiology as the same for all mammals.

  • Sharon G says:

    What a great story! I guess athletes do have brains after all LOL Juuuuuuuuuuuuuust kidding

  • Mike Quinoa says:

    Good for them. I’m donating my body to science when I die so hopefully researchers can learn to alleviate human suffering with info derived from the correct species.