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Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way.

PETA Booth Kicked Out of Iowa State Fair

Written by PETA | August 13, 2012

Update: The booth reopened on Saturday after fair officials relented and asked PETA to return. Once again, Iowa State Fair visitors were able to see farm workers’ callous behavior and unlawful cruelty to animals for themselves via the uncensored undercover video footage shown at the booth.

Originally posted August 10:

Fairgoers are used to seeing the traditional 4-H booths, but the Iowa State Fair was so shocked by PETA’s decidedly nontraditional version—which showed PETA’s “Glass Walls” video exposing the horrific cruelty of the meat trade—that everyone’s favorite animal rights group was banished from the fairgrounds.

Sensitive Ears, Insensitive Hearts

Supposedly, the raw language used by one factory-farm worker in the undercover video footage—he drops an F-bomb while describing the difficulty of snapping turkeys’ necks—proved too much for Iowans’ delicate ears. Then again, the ejection may have been due more to what the video showed than what was being said.

Iowa has already shown intolerance for finding out what goes on behind the scenes of the meat industry by passing an “ag gag” law, making it illegal to photograph or film factory-farm and slaughterhouse conditions. And people who’ve already stopped by the booth learned what the law is designed to conceal because “Glass Walls” includes video footage from a PETA investigation that documented how pigs at an Iowa Hormel supplier were being beaten and abused by workers, leading to convictions for livestock abuse and neglect.

Interestingly, PETA was the only “vendor” at the fair not selling anything but instead trying to educate the Iowa public about the darker side of agriculture, which is of increasing concern to the nation. Instead of peddling cotton candy or corn dogs, PETA just offered free food for thought and paid for the privilege of doing so. It seems that fair officials were more alarmed by the message and the throngs of people the booth attracted—especially teens.

Get ‘Em While They’re Young

It’s a shame that now those teens may not have the chance to learn how the meat business hurts animals—and works to co-opt young people with not-so-subtle propaganda. 4-H offers a lot of great programs for kids, but participants in its agricultural programs spend numerous hours bonding with cows, sheep, goats, and chickens who will ultimately make their way to a blood-soaked killing floor, just as most animals raised for food do.

That’s why in PETA’s booth, the four H’s stood for “Hell for animals,” “Heart attack–inducing,” “Hazard to the environment,” and “Hypocritical for teaching kids to care about only certain animals and to disrespect others.”

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  • Get Real says:

    Dana Flory, if you really were better educated you would know there is no excuse for any animal to be inhumanely killed. Iowa is not feeding the world; in fact factory farming hinders this.

  • Carla* says:

    Jon Wright, Thank-you!! It’s called compassion and you got it hon!!

  • vineel says:

    a day in history iowa is definitely going to regret,will be this…”a day will come when people see the murder of animals as they now see the murder of men-leonardo da vinci”

  • Mary Buckingham says:

    God Bless you PETA for trying to show the world the cruelty behind the meat industry. I recently watched a wonderful film “Temple Grandin” about a young woman who tried to improve the way animals were treated. In my naivety i actually thought her suggestions had become practice. Obviously this is not the case. What on earth is wrong with workers that they resort to such cruelty??? What on earth goes on in their head???? Is there no compassion? I despair of the human race sometime. Mary from Australia – we’re no better I’m afraid!!!!

  • Jon Ford 123 says:

    Excellent work, PETA! Going to this event was brilliant, I bet you changed some minds. Everyone should watch Glass Walls.

  • Becky says:

    i was signed up to volunteer the friday it was taken down but was really happy to hear that it was returning. i’m rescheduled for this upcoming friday and am excited for my first animal rights/volunteering gig! :)

  • Jon Wright says:

    I was at the Iowa State Fair today and happened to stumble upon the PETA booth. I watched the “Glass Houses” video and was stunned, repulsed, horrified, sickened, saddened. I wanted to turn away. I couldn’t. The level of brutality – personal brutality inflicted by individuals and institutional brutality administered by design – was beyond anything I have ever seen or could have imagined. The video broke me. I wept. There is nothing in my mind that can possibly justify the level of cruelty I saw in the video. I have been a meat eater for my entire life, but no more, I can’t. Thank you to PETA for bringing these horrors to light, and thank you to the young man and woman from LA and Washington D.C. who staffed the PETA booth today. They showed unbelievable courage by putting themselves in the line of fire. God bless you both.

  • JL says:

    Whatever happened to Freedom of speech…last time I checked Iowa was in America and PETA should be allowed at the fair in Iowa or anywhere else they decide and education should be admitted anywhere. Anyone who uses the word “inhumane” when describing what the animals have to go through is like running a plane through a building and calling a small accident. They are simply downplaying the horrific acts to make it excusable and acceptable and raising their naive children to be the same way and not allowing those children to be educated to know the real truth. (ignorance is bliss I suppose, maybe in Iowa)

  • Cyndy Cook says:

    No Dana,it is not “inhumane” how the animals are killed,it is BARBARIC. Better educated???? You and your kind won’t let people be better educated because you know if more ‘see’ the horror that goes on, less would be eating these beautiful creatures.

  • Brigitte Baumann, MD says:

    I think it is important for people to understand where their food comes from and how it is raised. One of the reasons that we have so much antibiotic resistance in treating human infections is because it is given to animals to prevent infection in them. If they had more space and cleaner living conditions, antibiotics would not be needed. I stopped eating meat decades ago –first for ethical reasons but now I know that there are also many health benefits as well. It’s a shame that PETA’s peaceful booth was thrown out of the fair.

  • kevin ryan says:

    Iowa doesn’t “feed the world” Dana. People who protest the status quo have many times the courage your kind has.

  • Michael Sellz says:

    Our state has an atrocious track record of animal abuse and cruelty. We took our kids to the Iowa State Fair last year, thinking we should at least go once in this lifetime. Aside from the sadness of all the animals in small cages, we now have a strong reason never to patronize the fair again. Thank you, PETA, for the effort to educate people. We support you! Michael Sellz and Rachel Joselson, Iowa City

  • Chelsea says:

    In reference to Dana, there are better ways of killing animals for meat rather than torturing them. So i applaud Iowa for being so ignorant.

  • Chelsea says:

    That’s unfortunate they were kicked out. People need to see the truth behind the food their eating. Good for PETA for taking a stand and trying to show them. These people are obviously just ignorant. Imagine taking your beloved pet dog and doing to it what the slaughterhouses do to pigs/chickens and cows, same thing.

  • MARIA GAYNOR says:

    people in iowa should know how the animals are slatered for food and not be offended by the truth,and that gos for any community that has slater houses.

  • feingod says:

    No PETA was asked to remove the video that had the word FUCK spelled out on the screen for little kids to see. They did not want to so they left in a big huff. Now they are back with the offense word not shown on the screen. THAT IS ALL! Make more of it if you want to but that really is all. I don’t care what the booth is about. Rule applies to everyone. No obscenities. .

  • Richard says:

    Can PETA get rid of the ag gag law some day. I sure hope so . The public should see the horrible way their food lives and dies. THANK YOU PETA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • bennythebaker says:

    It doesn’t help that the video ONLY shows footage from factory farms. There are farms that don’t cram livestock into small boxes, and I live on one of them. Also, I am not surprised that you set up this disgusting and horrific video in a place where there are a lot of small children. What do you expect when you set up a stand at the Iowa State Fair?

  • Jane says:

    Dana Flory, Perhaps you should learn the difference between “their” and “there” since you are “better educated” in Iowa. Also, very cute rhyme.

  • Scott Gurstein says:

    Yep, I would expect nothing less from the THUGS in Iowa who shill for the Meat Mafia. All they do is lie, gag, silence, and then lie some more…all to protect profit. Disgusting.

  • chris says:

    I am sorry that the officials wouldn’t allow people to see the truth. I live in Iowa and was disappointed in our governor for signing the ag gag law. Going to the fair is sad when you consider the animals tied up on short tethers all day or caged in hot cramped conditions to be shown. The disregard for animals is blatant.

  • Dana Flory says:

    I am glad you are not their to spoil the tradition of the Iowa State Fair. In Iowa, we are better educated about how we feed the world, through our farms and animal production. We understand that some of the “inhumane” ways animals are killed bother you, but we know it’s part of the circle of life. We will enjoy our fair, especially because PETA is not there!