Georgia Girl

Monday, January 28, 2008

Why I think PETA sucks (and why you should, too)

"Founded in 1980, PETA is dedicated to establishing and defending the rights of all animals. PETA operates under the simple principle that animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, or use for entertainment. PETA educates policymakers and the public about animal abuse and promotes kind treatment of animals." (

That sounds reasonable enough...almost. The whole "animals are not ours to eat wear, experiement on, or use for entertainment" is an act of putting their personal beliefs onto everyone (sort of like Congress passing anti-gay marriage laws). Onto the farmer who grows grain for all of the U.S. Onto the original conservationists--hunters in the early part of last century--who actually understand and spent countless hours managing and obsessing over wildlife; oh, and giving money to conservation programs--Go into Bass Pro Shop and you'll see big signs advertising "The Nature Conservancy," "National Wildlife Federation," etc all over the store. Onto me--a person who eats meat and wears leather boots, a person is who MADLY in love with my dog and with wildlife. Yet I condone hunting and fishing and eating meat and wearing leather and chicken houses (I'm from north Georgia, come on now). According to PETA, I suck.

Don't get me (completely) wrong. PETA has done some good things for animals. I will gladly admit that. Regardless of that fact, I will never EVER EVER become a member of PETA, donate to PETA, or give anyone who is a member of PETA the time of day when it comes to voicing their opinions about animals.

PETA is an group of extremists. The Nazi's were a group of extremists. So was Malcom X (up until the last few weeks of his life....He was assassinated; so was Hitler (in a way). Don't get me wrong--I don't agree with assassination). While the essence of extremist's platforms may have an honorable notion at mind, they go about fulfilling it like a bunch of crazy kindergarteners. While my opinion on what is moderate does not line up with everyone else's ideas on the subject, I think it's more or less in line with the laws of the universe. Moderate, to me, is another word for balanced. A moderate is a person who can see both sides of the fence. Being able to understant both sides makes you wiser. A myopic person is so fueled by their hatred for the other side, they don't bother to try to understand where the other side is coming from. In other words, a white person who does not like a black person simply because the person is black is ignorant. Extremism is ignorance. If you're an extremist, you don't bother trying to understand your opponents. Or, if you do try to find evidence to support your ideals, you look to the extremist on the other side who is equally as ignorant. Two wrongs don't make a right.

There's another side. Some people who support PETA don't really research the organization. These are people who love animals and can't stand the thought of animals being mis-treated. So they automatically think, hmmm, PETA. I'm hoping that's why Carrie Underwood and Charlize Theron are representatives of the organization. Supporting something you haven't researched thoroughly is another form of ignorance, however. I'm not saying I'm innocent--I usually vote for the candidate I like the best based on limited research. But I am aware of my ignorance.

The main thing that chaps my ass about PETA is they represent hunters as people who treat animals cruely. I am sure there are some dumbass rednecks around that do ignorant things and cause un-needed harm to animals. But most of them are out there controlling populations (ever seen a dead deer on the side of the road? Thank a hunter next time you see one for trying to keep those wasted and expensive deaths low), building their love of nature, or passing an appreciation of the wild onto their children. I'm not saying everyone should hunt, and if you don't hunt you suck. I'm saying PETA sucks for thinking hunters are mean, cruel, evil people out to do harm. Hunters don't kill game for mere entertainment. They kill animals for a variety of reasons--because they love the species (it might not make sense if a person doesn't know a hunter but that's that person's problem, not mine), because it gives them a sense of who we were meant to be before we threw ourselves into cubicles and deadlines, it brings them closer to God, to learn more about wildlife, etc etc etc.

If you look at PETA's campaigns, they attempt to sway people using the most-grotesque images possible. Is it terrible that one fox with an open wound on his/her foot didn't get medical treatment and it suffered? Sure. But when you use squeaky-wheel campaigning, you eliminated any notion that there are chicken houses and slaughter houses that treat animals with respect. You make it a divided issue: us versus them. What the hell are you ever going to accomplish with that kind of mentality? Will a die-hard PETA supporter ever respectfully engage in a conversation with an Elk hunter? Doubt that. Will an Elk hunter ever tolerate a die-hard PETA supporter coming onto his/her property and going hunting with him/her? Probably not--the hunter would probably think the PETA supporter would do something extreme to mess up his/her life. And rightly so, probably.

If you have to use such extreme publicity, you're obviously attempting to get extreme reactions. A lot of people, I'm sure, would watch a PETA video, become enraged by what they saw, and start protesting in the name of PETA. But what would those people REALLY know about the issue? Just one side. The squeaky one.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home