PeTA campaigns that totally miss the point

PeTA. If you don’t know who they are, I’m kind of curious as to if you’ve been living under a rock for the past decade. I was first introduced to PeTA when they launched the game “Super Chick Sisters,” a knockoff mario game starring two chicks trying to escape a twisted Kentucky Fried Chicken world (with the help of Pamela Anderson for some reason?). The game doesn’t seem very harmful in of itself, at least to my 12 or so year old mind. Looking back, I realize that this game was entirely a smear campaign designed to demonize the fast food industry. The worst part? This video gamer targeted children and young adults who played games on popular sites such as Newgrounds or Armor Games.

Researching this “blast from the past” game led me to other equally disturbing campaigns by PeTA that completely miss the point of saving animals and bank entirely on shock factor, sex appeal, and blatant disregard for decency.

Got Autism?

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In a less than tasteful play on the Got Milk campaign, this popular PeTA ad speaks to the supposed link between dairy and autism. First off, the actual scientific data they are basing this claim off is a study of 20 children and personal anecdotes. This data is not nearly strong enough to come to a solid conclusion about their hypothesis. Secondly, the big ol’ frowny face in the bowl of milk does nothing more than continue the stereotype that autism is an unwanted, debilitating, “sad” disease. This is far from the truth, shown by the hundreds of autistic athletes, artists, and scientists (and pretty much everything else under the sun) who are loved by their friends and family, with or without their condition.

Fur is a Drag

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Two separate campaigns, one supporting weight loss attributed to veganism and one calling for the end of fur clothing. The common link is very obvious transphobia. To say, “Dude Looks Like a Lady?” as if it were some incredulous sight is extremely offensive to any transgender person. In the fur advertisement, male PeTA activists take to the streets and dress in drag, also known as “the silliest outfits they can think of”. This connection implies that cross-dressing is an example of something just as ridiculous as wearing fur. These men were not trained in the art of drag performance, and it is highly unlikely that they have connection to the drag community. All this stunt accomplishes is attempting to make people laugh at men dressed as women. There is no surprise that even PeTA’s own supporters felt miffed at the offensive portrayal.

Purebreds Only!

In case you weren’t aware, the AKC stand for the American Kennel Club, an organization that contains the registry for purebred dogs in the United States and sponsors dog competitions for purebreds (including the infamous Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show). PeTA advocates here are comparing the strict lineage and breeding policies of purebred dogs to the racial separatism beliefs of the KKK. This is a very steep accusation. While the KKK has a horrific history of  violence and abuse. Their ideology is based entirely upon hate for other people. The AKC on the other hand is rooted in the tradition of dog showing that is traced back to the 1800s. A more accurate comparison would be dog shows to beauty pageants or strongman competitions. These types of competitions are based both on outward appearance and physical ability, much like the categories dogs are scored in. To compare the struggle of minorities and the hatred, violence, and danger they endured to the selective breeding of dogs is extremely disrespectful to not only minorities but also breeders.

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