PETA’s Mother Mary Breastfeeding Billboard Set for Boston

In Wake of Pope’s Comments, Group Encourages Mothers to Wean Themselves off Cow’s Milk

For Immediate Release:
January 16, 2014

Sophia Charchuk 202-483-7382


Is Boston ready for a billboard showing Mother Mary nursing Baby Jesus next to the caption “If It Was Good Enough for Jesus … The Breast Is Best. Dump Dairy”? PETA hopes so and is negotiating with outdoor advertisers to place the billboard near the Cathedral of the Holy Cross as part of a campaign to get even more mothers to switch from cow’s milk—with its litany of animal abuse, from dehorning to taking beloved calves away from their moms for veal—to delicious beverages made from soy, rice, and other healthy plant foods.

The campaign got an endorsement this week when Pope Francis, speaking at the Sistine Chapel in Rome, encouraged women to breastfeed their babies, including in public places such as churches. PETA chose Boston because of its large Roman Catholic population.

“Cow’s milk is the perfect food—if you’re a baby cow,” says PETA Senior Director of Communications Colleen O’Brien, a Roman Catholic. “We hear from more and more mothers who realize that cow’s milk is not as digestible a source of calcium as plant food sources and has been linked to health problems, such as obesity and heart disease, in later life.”

Cows used by the dairy industry are kept almost constantly pregnant by artificial insemination and are bred and often given drugs to produce such unnaturally large quantities of milk that they experience increased rates of infection, such as mastitis. Their beloved newborn babies are taken away from them so that the mothers’ milk can be sold to supermarkets. Because cows’ bodies prematurely wear out, the animals are shipped to slaughter at just a fraction of their natural life expectancy.

Cow’s milk and other dairy products are loaded with artery-clogging saturated animal fat and cholesterol. Renowned pediatrician Dr. Benjamin Spock stated, “[T]here was a time when cow’s milk was considered very desirable. But research, along with clinical experience, has forced doctors and nutritionists to rethink this recommendation.” Cow’s milk is the number one cause of food allergies in infants and children, according to the American Gastroenterological Association, and the inability to digest milk can begin at an early age.

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