Provocative Street Art Blitz Targets National Primate Research Center

For Immediate Release:
January 27, 2022

Contact:
Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382

San Antonio – Starting this weekend, San Antonio residents will be confronted by images of a traumatized baby monkey torn away from her mother to be abused by experimenters. Colombian street artist Praxis has joined forces with PETA to plaster the city with thought-provoking street art demanding that the Southwest National Primate Research Center (SNPRC) at Texas Biomedical Research Institute—and the other six federally funded national primate research centers around the country—be shut down.

“Texas Biomed’s primate center has squandered billions of taxpayer dollars to make monkeys miserable and has repeatedly violated animal protection laws,” says PETA Vice President Dr. Alka Chandna. “PETA wants Texas Biomed to shut down its failed laboratory and send the monkeys to reputable sanctuaries where they could live out the rest of their lives in peace.”

In the last decade, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has fined Texas Biomed nearly $26,000 for repeatedly allowing primates to escape from cages and injure themselves and others, including humans. Last year, 159 baboons suffered from painful frostbite so severe that their fingers, toes, or tails had to be amputated because SNPRC failed to protect them during a winter storm.

After San Antonio residents overwhelmingly opposed giving $11 million to Texas Biomed in the 2022 bond program, it pulled its proposal from consideration. But on Wednesday, the city defied the public’s wishes and added $10 million to Texas Biomed as part of the American Rescue Plan Act—federal money meant to help the city during the COVID-19 crisis.

Locations for this artwork include areas around downtown, Texas Biomed’s campus, and private club The Argyle.

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

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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