‘Not Cool’: Lily Tomlin Slams Ford Over Crash Tests on Pigs

For Immediate Release:
June 27, 2022

Contact:
Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Detroit – Actor and Detroit native Lily Tomlin sent a letter to Ford Motor Company Director Mary Wroten today blasting the company for funding a study at her alma mater Wayne State University, in which at least 27 pigs were killed and their bodies were hung by wires through the spine and hit with a swinging pendulum.

“Ford’s apparent return to the dark ages of animal testing reflects poorly on the company, the Motor City, and, frankly, on humanity,” writes Tomlin. “I thought those bleak days were in the rearview mirror, and hearing that they are recurring is like suffering from whiplash.”

In 2009, Ford enacted a ban on funding and conducting tests on live animals—something the company has apparently reneged on, prompting Tomlin to demand that it “shift out of reverse” and use only modern, humane alternatives. More than 86,000 PETA supporters have joined her in calling on Ford to end this barbaric practice.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

Tomlin’s letter to Wroten follows.

June 27, 2022

Mary Wroten

Director of Global Sustainability and Environmental, Social, and Governance

Ford Motor Company

Dear Ms. Wroten:

Like everyone else who grew up in the Detroit area, I have bone-deep connections with the Ford Motor Company. I attended Wayne University and I began my stand-up career in Detroit. When I heard from PETA that Ford had bankrolled a Wayne State University study using pigs in crash tests, I was deflated. I thought those bleak days were in the rearview mirror, and hearing that they are recurring is like suffering from whiplash.

I’ve recently learned that in a study titled “Side Impact Assessment and Comparison of Appropriate Size and Age Equivalent Porcine Surrogates to Scaled Human Side Impact Response Biofidelity Corridors,” at least 27 pigs were killed. Their bodies were apparently hung in the air by wires threaded through their spines, and then they were slammed with a high-impact pendulum. The study’s authors specifically thanked Ford Motor Company for “funding and support.”

That’s not cool. Ford’s apparent return to the dark ages of animal testing reflects poorly on the company, the Motor City, and, frankly, on humanity. We live today in an era of technological advances, in which high-speed computers and crash-test dummies are commonplace. There is just no need for unethically using animals as stand-ins for humans.

I fully support PETA’s demand that Ford stop equivocating and adopt a clear public policy not to fund, conduct, commission, or support animal testing unless it is explicitly required by law. I am joining the more than 83,000 people who have already called on Ford to shift out of reverse and drive on the right side of history by banning animal testing forever.

Thank you for your attention to this important matter. I hope to hear soon that Ford Motor Company has publicly adopted a compassionate, animal-free testing policy.

Sincerely,

Lily Tomlin

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 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

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