Eye on the Antis – October 2004

Folks, there is outrage, shock — and a desperate plea for money — coming from the PETA headquarters.

Ingrid Newkirk, founder and president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, is in utter disbelief at a sudden turn of events. It seems that groups are buying advertisements, even billboards, that depict PETA and animal rights in an unflattering way.

“Frankly, we’re experiencing shock and awe, here in our offices, at the dirtiest of dirty tricks that are being played on unsuspecting souls out there,” Newkirk said in a letter to PETA members.

This from the leader of an animal-rights group that right now is using donations to buy billboards that say:
• “Feeding Kids Meat is Child Abuse”
• “Jesus Was a Vegetarian”
• “Open Your Eyes to Today’s Holocaust” (regarding eating chicken).
Yet, PETA is experiencing shock and awe. How dare a group attack PETA? With ads and billboards no less!
Newkirk says, “…money is being used to fund an unprecedented glut of ads against PETA… If honesty can’t influence people, these people are hoping that money can!”
One of the ads she mentions reads, “Lab rats or sick kids? PETA attacks doctors working to find cures for diseases.”
What’s dirty or dishonest about that?

“PETA needs your support — both your moral and (emphasis added by PETA) your financial support — more today than ever before,” Newkirk says.

I guess PETA needs to buy more billboards to combat the “dirty tricks” of their opponents. The whole thing is laughable. Newkirk and PETA cry about the very tactics they have used for years, calling the billboards and ads “dirty tricks, name-calling, and fear-mongering.” Talk about the pot calling the kettle black.

You may have noticed that PETA ramped up their anti-fishing campaign last week. Even the Atlanta Journal-Constitution ran a story headlined “PETA portrays fish as friends, not food.” Quoted was a PETA director who said, “No one would ever put a hook through a dog’s or cat’s mouth. Once people start to realize that fish, although they come in different packaging, are just as intelligent, they’ll stop eating them.”

Expect a billboard soon with a hook yanking grotesquely on a dog’s lip.

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) is beginning to fire back at its critics as well. An NRA ad pointed out that HSUS called presidential candidate John Kerry a “hero” for his anti-hunting voting record. Here was HSUS President and CEO Wayne Pacelle’s response, “It’s disgraceful that the National Rifle Association is trying to inflame voters by misrepresenting the positions of The HSUS. While we object to recreational hunting as a matter of policy, our efforts are aimed at ending the most inhumane and unsporting forms of hunting, such as canned hunting, bear baiting, and the shooting of mourning doves.”

Huh? Pacelle says that as a matter of policy, HSUS is anti-hunting. But he wants to make it very clear that HSUS efforts are only aimed at the “inhumane and unsporting forms of hunting.” Like dove hunting.
Thanks for clearing that up, Wayne.

In other HSUS news, the animal-rights group is proud to announce that 10 acres in McIntosh County near Darien has been placed in The Humane Society of the United States Wildlife Land Trust. The couple who own the land get a tax break for preserving the land in a conservation easement. One little catch with a conservation easement sponsored by HSUS: “The landowner agrees to establish the property as a permanent wildlife sanctuary (an agreement that is binding on all future owners of the property). For The Wildlife Land Trust, these terms always include a ban on recreational and commercial hunting and trapping.”

We need to keep the heat turned up.

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