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Ride-Around Pigs at DNC Say, ‘Tax Meat!’

Written by PETA | August 26, 2008

Now that the Olympics are over, it’s impossible to turn on the TV or open the newspaper without seeing something about the Democratic National Convention. What’s going to happen, what’s going to be said, who’s going to be there …

Well, we’ll tell you who’s there—the PETA pigs, that’s who!

Our pigs don’t have anything to say about any of the candidates, of course—they’re tackling a global issue: meat!

The pigs—who are circling around the convention center and picking up passengers in their cherry red convertible—are calling for a federal excise tax on meat. (Look out for them next week as they cruise around the Republican National Convention!) Why? Well, there’s a “sin” tax on cigarettes, alcohol, and gasoline. Why shouldn’t there be one on meat, which is bad for both your health and the environment?

Our Senior VP Dan Mathews (who, as we know, is fond of wearing costumes) is among the protesters. He sums up the reason our pigs are calling for a 10-cents-per-pound tax: “The impact of the meat trade is as devastating to our health as the tobacco and alcohol industries put together—and even more so to the environment. Slapping a tax on meat would save countless lives—and not just those of animals.”

Check out our pigs below—and if you’re concerned about the health and environmental consequences of eating meat, check out for a free copy of PETA’s “Vegetarian Starter Kit”!


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Written by Amanda Schinke

Commenting is closed.
  • Amy says:

    Instead of wasting time trying to drive the cost of eating higher why not fight to make the price of meat replacements cheaper? My family can barely afford to eat bread and pasta. We haven’t had fresh vegetables in months even though we all love them. Stop wasting time trying to force people to become vegetarians and concentrate on forcing the prices of organic fruits and vegetables and meat alternatives down into the realm of remotely reasonable and you would get some lifelong meat eaters to convert simply for the affordable food!

  • Paul says:

    Antigone I’m a meateater not on any meds and never in need of a doctor….I’ve been a meat eater for 26 years. What’s you point? There are a great many meat eaters in the world so it is inaccurate to state figures when trying to form a debate on the subject. I actualyl agree that a vegetarian diet is healthier but I will not conceed that a meateater is unhealthy just for that fact. If well balanced with a healthy lifestyle and exercise I do not see health issues being a concern. I have also just seen that peta are giving away free gas to promote vegetarianism. Which is just amazing to me given the pictures above. This is why people dislike peta not because you are vegetarians etc and I agree with what peta stands for and will never buy fur or animal skins. It’s the hypocracy. You have the nerve to have a go at meat eaters for the problems the planet faces and then you offer petrol free of charge? Unbelievable.

  • Antigone1000 says:

    Paul I’m a vegan not on any meds and never in need of a doctor…….I’ve been vegan for 16 years. There is research to support that veganism is the best diet for a human.

  • Paul says:

    You went to campaign for taxing meat to help the environment in a Mustang? A Mustang? A car owned by Ford a huge contributor to pollution. Beggars Belief. A bit like when I watch Madonna crow on about the environment before jumping into a private jet built for 60 to run all over the world. And this comment… What is unfair however is for someone like me who never needs to go to a doctor and who is not on any meds. …is farcical and ambiguous at best. It’s almost as though no vegetarian has visited a doctor.

  • Casey Hutcherson says:

    How can we average citizens help get this passed? Please give us action steps! I’m all for it! For those of you that think this idea is ridiculous and that the alternatives are too expensive how about growing your own fruits and veggies? Then you’d have more money for the slightly more expensive meatsubstitutes. If you don’t like meat subs there are plenty of other types of food out there that have protein beans!. Finally let’s get real here people. Just because meat has always been a food choice doesn’t make it right. Going to McD’s and picking up a hamburger is just too easy. I think if you really want to eat it you should have to do all of the dirty work yourself. Then maybe you’d realize how wrong it is. If you want to go on being unhealthy that’s your choice. But what choice do the animals get?

  • Erlyn Garrison says:

    Awesome awesome awesome. Peta always has something new and thought provoking going on. Thank you to everyone involved in these displays of basic human ethics.

  • Juliana says:

    Thank you for doing what you guys do. That’s a great idea. However they won’t put tax on meat anytime soon because their arguement will be that it is a necessity to live not like cigars or alcohol. But we still have to keep the fight going! Hurray for pink piggy’s. Oink! Oink!

  • Allisyn A. says:

    Awesome idea! My entire family is vegetarian! They should tax milk and eggs too!

  • Ben says:

    I just believe the governement should stop to finance the meat producers not put a tax on meat. That would be a greater pace.

  • Trey says:

    You guys are just as bad as the Democrats. Stop telling people what to and not to eat it is very disgraceful this is the United States and we have the choice to eat what we want. If we don’t want to be healthy that is our choice. We have been eating meat since the beginning of time and animals eat meat that is a part of life so get over it.

  • Alex says:

    I think a tax on meat is a good Idea but with the price of food so high and more people asking for welfare and foodstamps because they cant aford what is in front of them it would only drive up the crime rate people will start stealing food and other things to sell just to buy food. It’s like asking a homeless man to take a stray off the streets when that’s where he himself lives. Why don’t we wait till vegan alternatives and the cost of food come down in price first before we add more to the cost.I am a vegetarian but my family is not. I can barely aford food for them and much less for myself. It is a good Idea but the timing is wrong.

  • Christine says:

    You people are not getting the point its taxing meat to help save their lives the animals as well as the people!. If the “poor” can’t afford meat then maybe they should find an alternative food source may I suggest faux meat? And if they can’t afford meat they sure as hll aren’t going to be able to afford the hospital bills after the heart attack!

  • Mary says:

    Like so many other people have stated before me this idea is absolutely ridiculous. There are already people out there who can barely afford to put food on their tables now! I myself tried vegetarianism but found it far too expensive to keep up not to mention I kept throwing up after my meals because the taste of veggie burgers and the like just doesn’t sit well with my stomach. I also began to have dizzy spells from what I assume to be lack of protein and other needed nutrients. There are some people out there who need to eat red meat. Like for example myself. What am I supposed to do? Cause myself endless suffering because of the tofu burgers I throw up every time I eat them. I can’t even stomach the smell of them anymore because of the onslaught of nausea. So again what am I to do if this tax comes through and I simply can’t afford to eat? Am I supposed to be eating ten tubs of peanut butter a day? Which I’ll tell you now would make me extremely obese and actually kills one of the “purposes” behind this taxing. And this isn’t me being a “meat eating Nazi” this is a person who gave it a chance and just couldn’t stomach the taste. But back to issue at hand taxing meat. If you did do this it would DESTROY our economy. People aren’t buying things NOW because they can’t afford them just wait until they can’t even afford to feed themselves! And if you want proof that people can’t feed themselves now just go to one of the big cities. Even my sister whom I live with struggles to put food on the table with the good steady income she has now. Yes that’s right this post is coming from somebody that is in a bit of financial trouble as it is. If we aren’t in a depression now we sure as hell will be if this tax goes through which is highly unlikely considering that if a fifteen year old myself came up with these logical assumptions that the politicians or one of their smarter underdogs will come up with these and more. Good luck with this one I have a STRONG feeling that you are definitely going to need it. And before any of you jump on me for being evil and a meat eater I’ll tell you right now what goes on in Slaughterhouses some of the time just isnt right. Animals shouldn’t be put through torture like that. However I’ve done a ton of research myself and have talked to a few people who work in dairy farms and the such and they’ve told me that animals aren’t always treated as badly as you see it. Only in extreme cases are animals tortured or hurt badly. But seeing as I now get to sit down to a delicious lobster stew I’ll post this so all of you can “stew” on my own response. Really no pun intended.

  • Antigone1000 says:

    Beth Tofu and fake meat products don’t cause health problems like meat does. Having been vegan for 16 years I can attest to the health benefits. Taxing meat is absolutely fair since people should pay for their own health problems. What is unfair however is for someone like me who never needs to go to a doctor and who is not on any meds to have to pay for those overweight people who have health problems because they will not eat properly or exercise. Not only should we tax meat but people should have to pay out of pocket for those drugs they take due to their own laziness. It is about time that the financial burden be shifted back to those responsible instead of being borne by everyone.



  • jessica says:

    I am a vegetarian and i believe eating meat is wrong but do we really need to punish the poor even more? some people cannot afford any food at all they cannot afford more pricey vegan substitutes. this is a funny gesture but just not a good idea.

  • Joelle Verdier says:

    Wonderful Ingrid Newkirk and Dan Matthews. Perfectly logical proposal. I’ll see with Nicolas who is leading the demonstrations in Paris France if we can do something similar in Paris. Our Paris Veggie Pride was successful with more than 500 vegetarian participants. Joelle

  • Beth says:

    If you are going to Tax Meat then I think it’s only fair to tax Tofu and all fake meat products.

  • Jade says:

    A Brilliant idea However all that money should be pumped into projects that help animals and there habitats. As a Vegetarian I fully support this all the way GO PETA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Kristin says:

    Yes keep on pushing this!

  • Larry Chapman says:

    Hello I am from Canada it would be cool to tax meat It causes alot of health problems. I don’t eat meat. In Canada the national and provincial govts. strongly support the meat industry it probably won’t work but it’s worth trying to get govt. to cooperate!

  • Veronica Galluzzo says:


  • Gabi says:

    I love the idea of taxing meat and while we’re at it lets show the animal abuse videos to kids in middle school…that is when you still get a good early impact and these videos should be shown to high school kids as well. Early education is key and maybe we can turn this insanity of animal abuse and breeding around.

  • kat says:

    we shouldn’t just tax meat and leave it at that. put it in a fund that is usedby a taskforceto end animal cruelty. think about how much more humane slaughter could be if only the government woud start prosecuting and had sufficient funds for it!

  • Teriqua says:

    I think you will actually get the government to impose a sin tax on all fast food. Seems to be a big alarm suddenly that Americans are FAT! Burger King is trying to lure parents in by cutting apples in the shape of french fries. Nice try but even if they sell some it won’t undo the damage done in America by fast food. Okay honestly I don’t care about the smelly chloestoralridden Americans who eat meat. But if there is a way to tax the fast food industry out of business it’s a start. Carnivores don’t see things the same as we do. It’s gonna take a lot of work to get the cavemen to drop the meat.

  • Haley says:

    No offense I’m a supporter of the proper treatment of animals but I’m not a vegetarian and I think taxing meat is the stupidest thing I’ve heard yet. Not only would this completely drive up already over the roof prices in all food products but it would make absolutely no impact. I support hunting for food and strongly disapprove of the livestock market and the treatment of the animals in those markets but at the same time I realize there’s nothing anyone can do to change that so I deal with it.

  • Jenny says:

    I love it! I live and work right in Denver. In the middle of the DNC. I was so happy when I saw the pigs driving around! GREAT JOB GUYS!

  • allayhana slade says:

    i am really glad peta is around these days we need to stop aanimal abusing it is rude and very mean! STOP ANIMAL ABUSING!

  • dianne says:

    Hooray for PETA for bringing this to the attention of the public. If meat is suppose to be responsible for at least 7 different cancers then why isn’t it taxed for the same reason as cigerettes are being taxed?

  • Miranda hoyt says:

    this is liek the most amazing thing i have heard in a while i dont eat meat so i am like 100 percent for this i hope to pass this DD

  • Kelley says:

    Why not a tax on meatit is a much bigger sin to eat meat than to hang out in a bar drink and smoke on a Saturday night!

  • lynda downie says:

    Why not? I think it’s a great idea to tax meat.

  • Soliel says:

    I so wish I was there. It won’t happen because the Democrats are pandering to groups who love meat and they don’t want to offend. But we can try.

  • chris says:

    Taxing meat is going to raise the cost of food for everyone. This is also going to raise demand for nonmeat products raising its price also. What about the people that can barely afford to eat now? Should they just starve to death? What about the health care burden from lack of nutrition from not having enough protein? Even if the government decided to tax meat I doubt you would see that money go to Mr. Cow.

  • Allie says:

    I love that idea! LOL! It makes perfect sense since we do place taxes on cigarettes alcohol and gasoline!! Brillant!

  • nicole says:

    this is a good idea but with the taxes on cigarettes and alcohol already in place and lots of people still drink and smoke. the money derived from the taxes would need to go to a fund that benefits animals

  • Maureen says:

    Meat production is free enterprise and because of its impact on our health the medicare pays for it. I truly agree that meat should be taxed like tobacco and alcohol and that would save billions of dollars to our government if the tax comes into effect.

  • melissa says:

    PETA you guys are awesome because your not only saving the animals but the environment and people as well. Most people are just to blind to see to it all or are a bunch of ingrates.Anyway good luck and I’ll be looking for the cute pigs at the Republican National Convention!

  • Jill Harper says:

    I am so happy Peta is around. Thank you Ingrid. I am a member of the Green Party we don’t have to be told what a waste of a life eating meat is. It’s a horrible thing we do. Tax the hell out of all those damn meat eaters. It is a vice and should be treated as such. Thank you!

  • SASHA says:


  • Pete says:

    I hope this passes!