‘Forward—Go Vegan’: PETA’s Suggestion for Wisconsin Plates

New Slogan Would Look to a Healthy, Humane Future

For Immediate Release:
November 7, 2017

Audrey Shircliff 202-483-7382

Madison, Wis.

After Wisconsin’s business lobby suggested that the state do away with its circa–World War II “America’s Dairyland” license plate slogan, PETA wrote to Gov. Scott Walker this morning suggesting an animal-friendly replacement: “Forward—Go Vegan.”

In the letter, PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat or abuse in any other way”—points out that the new license plate would show respect for both the growing number of Wisconsinites who don’t consume dairy “products” and for cows, who endure tail-docking, dehorning, and repeated artificial insemination on Wisconsin’s dairy farms.

“So many Wisconsinites are embracing healthy, humane vegan eating that both Madison and Milwaukee nabbed a spot on this year’s Best Cities for Vegans list,” says PETA Philanthropic Specialist and Wisconsin resident Melissa Karpel. “The future is vegan, and PETA is encouraging Wisconsin to embrace that future on its license plates.”

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

PETA’s letter to Gov. Scott Walker follows.

November 7, 2017

The Honorable Scott Walker

Governor of Wisconsin

Dear Governor Walker,

As a Wisconsin resident and on behalf of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and our 6.5 million members and supporters worldwide, including thousands across Wisconsin, I’m writing to ask you to endorse an alternative to the “America’s Dairyland” license plate, which has reached a dead end. We encourage you not to have a blind spot when it comes to the many Wisconsinites who don’t consume dairy “products” for health, religious, or environmental reasons or because they know how cruel the dairy industry really is to cows.

Cows used in the dairy industry are repeatedly artificially inseminated, and their frightened calves are torn away from them within hours of birth. As you can see in this video, cows are connected to milking machines that can cause painful sores and an udder infection called mastitis. On many farms, their horns are burned off or gouged out, their tails are cut off, and holes are punched through their ears—all without pain relief.

A staggering 51 percent of greenhouse-gas emissions are caused by animal agriculture, and the dairy industry accounts for 75 percent of those emissions. The Environmental Protection Agency has acknowledged that livestock pollution is the greatest threat to our waterways and that animal agriculture is directly linked to water and air pollution. The United Nations believes that a global shift toward plant-based eating is vital if we are to combat the worst effects of climate change.

Consuming dairy “products” is linked to an increased risk for developing heart disease as well as prostate, breast, and ovarian cancer, so it’s no wonder that half of Americans now consume nondairy milk and roughly 8 million U.S. adults are vegan or vegetarian. Just this year, Madison and Milwaukee placed 12th and 36th, respectively, on the list of 2017’s Best Cities for Vegans & Vegetarians, so—not to toot our own horn—we’ve come up with “Forward—Go Vegan” for your consideration as a new message on license plates to represent the progress toward cruelty-free eating in the state.

Compassionate Wisconsinites are increasingly choosing vegan foods and are dismayed that their streets are being used as free advertising space for dairy executives. Please encourage the legislature to kick this change into high gear by removing this promotion of a violent, environmentally irresponsible, and unhealthy industry and designing an alternative license plate that will resonate with kind residents who don’t consume dairy “products” or support the dairy industry. Thank you for your consideration.


Melissa Karpel

PETA Foundation

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