CU-Boulder: Retire Mascot Program, PETA Urges

Group Says That Times Change and Time's Up on Using Live Animals as Sports Props

For Immediate Release:
November 20, 2019

Contact:
Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382

Boulder, Colo. – PETA sent a letter today calling on the University of Colorado (CU)–Boulder not to replace Ralphie V—a female buffalo used as the school’s mascot, who reportedly can no longer be controlled—but rather to retire its live-mascot program along with her in recognition that animals should not be thought of as toys, props, or amusements. Instead, they should be respected for who they are and how they live naturally.

PETA points out that live-animal mascots have been injured when brought onto the field for sports games; numerous colleges and universities—including Cornell University, the University of California–Los Angeles, and Brown University—have now swapped live-animal mascots for crowd-pleasing costumed humans; and the exploitation of animals in circuses and marine parks is ending around the world. PETA is asking CU-Boulder to acknowledge that it’s not just human beings who have interests and that animals don’t wish to be subjected to the noise and commotion inherent in sporting events.

“Bringing a live animal into a stadium full of screaming fans is dangerous for everyone involved and no picnic for the animal,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “PETA is calling on CU-Boulder to recognize that other living, feeling beings aren’t sports props and retire its live-mascot program.”

Earlier this year, Bevo, the University of Texas’ longhorn mascot, charged Uga, the University of Georgia’s bulldog mascot, before the teams’ Sugar Bowl game.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org.

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“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

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind