As if the box office hit Free Birds didn’t give kids enough food for thought, PETA is hoping to kick things up a notch by placing a high-tech ad in bus shelters in several Northeast cities that contains a secret Thanksgiving message that only kids can see.
The ad uses lenticular technology, in which images are printed on a plastic sheet of tiny lenticules, or lenses, which project different images from different angles. In this case, tall people see a benign Father Knows Best–like image of a retro mom carving a holiday turkey. But people under 4 feet 3 inches tall see something quite different—Mom stabbing a live turkey as blood splatters the horrified kids’ faces. Our goal is to inspire kids to change the course of history for turkeys without having to travel back in time to 1621.
Every year, turkeys are crammed by the thousands into huge, filthy sheds on factory farms. Farmers often hack off the ends of the birds’ toes and beaks—without any anesthetics whatsoever—in order to prevent them from injuring each other in the severely crowded conditions.
A PETA investigation at a series of turkey factory farms in West Virginia documented that employees stomped on turkeys’ heads, punched turkeys, hit them on the head with pliers, and struck their heads against metal scaffolding. Men shoved feces into turkeys’ mouths and held turkeys’ heads under water. One man bragged about jamming a broom stick down a turkey’s throat. Another said he saw a coworker fatally inject sulfuric acid into turkeys’ heads. A supervisor said that he saw workers kill hundreds of turkeys with two-by-fours.
While that investigation led to the first-ever felony indictments for cruelty to farmed birds and the first-ever convictions of turkey factory farmers for cruelty, turkeys, like chickens, are not protected by the federal Humane Methods of Livestock Slaughter Act. During slaughter, they frequently have their throats slit and are dunked into tanks of scalding-hot water without first being rendered unconscious.
What You Can Do
If you wouldn’t want your kids to see how your dinner was made, maybe you shouldn’t be eating it. Host a G-rated Thanksgiving celebration that’s suitable for all audiences, including turkeys. We have hundreds of delicious, turkey-friendly vegan recipes to choose from.