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For Immediate Release:November 16, 2011
Contact:Kristin Richards 202-483-7382
Washington -- With a week left before President Barack Obama
"pardons" two turkeys, PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk fired off a
letter to the president asking him to rename the traditional Rose Garden
ceremony and say that he will "spare," instead
of "pardon," the turkeys. As Newkirk explains in the letter,
which appears below, turkeys haven't committed any crimes, so it's inaccurate
to "pardon" them. Semantics—as any movement for social change
information, please visit PETA.org.
letter to President Obama follows.
November 16, 2011
The Honorable Barack Obama
President of the United States
The White House
Dear Mr. President:
I'm writing on behalf of PETA and
our 3 million members and supporters—as well as the millions more people who
have rescued turkeys or are religious or ethical vegetarians—regarding a
longstanding White House tradition: the turkey "pardon." As I'm sure
you know, "to pardon" means "to exempt a guilty party from
punishment." We would like to propose a more appropriate term for the
event: "spare." The difference between "spare" and
"pardon" may seem slight, but as you know, our language choices have
a lasting influence on the way that we, as a culture, view the action described.
These turkeys, as well as the millions of turkeys slated to be violently killed
for the holidays, are innocent bystanders, not criminals. It would be more
accurate to "spare," or refrain from harming, them.
Thank you for your consideration,
and happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.
Very truly yours,
Ingrid E. Newkirk
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.