Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Dear PeTA

Last week, I checked the mail and had a survey from the State of Minnesota.  I was curious as to why the state would be sending me a survey.  Perhaps they wanted me to tell them how to keep snow off our streets in the winter.... Or how increase tourism...  I opened it to discover it was a survey from none other than PeTA.  That's right, the lovely paint-tossing, sexist, fat-phobic PeTA sent me a survey to ask me all about cruelty to cats and dogs.  They wanted to know how aware I am of the cruelty that happens to cats and dogs on a regular basis.  Then, on the back of the survey, there was a request for donations.  PeTA was even so kind as to circle the $19 a month option for me, telling me that this was the amount that would help them the most. 

See, here's the thing, PeTA: I don't like your organization.  I never have.  I think the tactics PeTA uses to spread their message are atrocious and vile.  Most of you probably know some of the things PeTA has done that are below the belt.  But in case you don't, let me share.

1.Fat-Phobia: Yes, PeTA is incredibly fat-phobic.  They have posted numerous billboards shaming overweight people in order to get the message out that being vegan may help you lose weight.  Yes, it's true that people who follow a plant based diet tend to be thinner than their meat eating counterparts.  Yes, eating a plant-based diet can reduce your risk of becoming obese, or getting an illness commonly linked to meat and dairy consumption (such as high blood pressure.)  However, it is not true that all vegans are skinny.  It's also not true that all meat eaters are fat.  Becoming a vegan is not a sure fire weight loss venture.  And fat shaming people is not ever going to get you what you want.  Below are some examples of PeTA's fat shaming ads:

(This one is especially awful because it implies that fat people can't be or shouldn't be proud of their bodies.  I love my body, even when I'm fat.)

2. PeTA is sexist.  They commonly have ads featuring women wearing either no clothes or some bikini that shows off tons of skin.  They have made videos where a man and woman have very violent sex, then say it's because the man is vegan.  One only has to watch the following video to see how PeTA tries to appeal to men:

The entire video is based on the idea that the ONLY way to appeal to men is with sex.  It implies that men cannot do or accomplish anything in their lives unless sex is on the table.  This video implies that men can't become vegan because of moral or ethical reasons - which is bs.  If you are a man and you're not offended by the implications of this video, then color me surprised.

When looking at the way PeTA treats women, one need only look at the following advertisement:

There are hundreds of other ads like this that PeTA has put out that degrade women and put them in vulnerable positions.  The suggestion is that women are only valuable for their sex appeal and nothing else.  (That also goes back to the implication that men can only be enticed by sex.  Women are not here just for their sexuality, and men can be appealed to on more than just the most base level. 

So, PeTA, I am not going to thank you for sending me that survey.  I am not going to donate any money.  I won't promote your organization.  These and other reasons are more than enough for me to take my volunteerism and monetary donations elsewhere - and I'd urge all other animal activists to do the same.

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