Archive

Posts Tagged ‘PETA’

PET-O-PETA

August 30th, 2009 No comments

“People for the Ethical Treatment of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals”.  It does have a ring to it.   I can only hope this doesn’t actually need explaining. It’s the Onion.

Advocacy Group Decries PETA’s Inhumane Treatment Of Women

Not helpful

February 18th, 2009 No comments

Let’s see … what’s the biggest hurdle I encounter in trying to talk to people about the issues of animal advocacy?  Humm, stereotypes of animal rights advocates as nut-jobs so far outside the mainstream that anything they say can and should be dismissed out of hand.  Yep, that’s a good place to start.  

I had originally linked to the video of what PETA is doing in Texas (for conversational purposes – not because I’m proud of what they’re doing), two girls in lingerie making out on a heart shaped ‘bed’ on a sidewalk, but I decided not to.  It’s apparently part of the “vegetarians have better sex” thing they’re doing.  If you haven’t seen it, you won’t have any trouble finding it.  The superbowl ad  they did was useful here because it has a meat counterpart and is good for discussion of stereotypes. This gig in Texas is just embarrassing.  It’s a free country, and that’s cool, but PETA’s propensity for playing to the commodification of women is sooooo not helpful.  Sigh.  

In the spirit of full disclosure, I didn’t always see the full ramifications of their approach.   I thought, well, whatever toots their horn.   I didn’t see how intimately connected sexism, speciesism, racism, etc. were.   The means do matter, they matter very much.  It’s not just about what we do to animals, it’s about the rot in our souls that blinds us to the evil we do to them, and to each other – I think it’s the same rot.   I know they believe in what they’re doing but we’re not doing the same thing at all.

Peta, the Crusaders, and Out-Group Homogeneity

August 29th, 2008 No comments

Neither Peta nor Peter Singer represents everyone involved in animal advocacy any more than the Crusaders represent all people who care about Jesus.   For every instance of someone holding up Peta or Peter Singer as representative of all animal advocates there is someone using say, the Crusaders or the Ku Klux Klan as representative of Christians.

Out-group homogeneity (OGH) bias leads us to assuming “They’re All Like That”.   We tend believe that our own group is comprised of more or less unique individuals with a variety of behaviors, opinions, perspectives, etc. yet assume the opposite, and often the worst of the “other” group.   This can be a deep and difficult bias to overcome.   One way to learn to recognize it is to put yourself in the position of being a minority, an outsider.  Try being a left leaning, egalitarian, animal advocate in a theologically orthodox Christian church in the south, for example.  ;-> When you find yourself being a victim of stereotyping and prejudice you’ll be more aware of doing it to others.   It’s difficult to grow beyond our own bounds when we never bother to step outside them.  The longer we stay in our own little circle the easier we fall prey to being both the agent and subject of OGH bias.  Get to know people you think are ‘different’  than you.   It’s easy to understand that God doesn’t fit in a box.  It’s harder to understand that for the most part, people don’t either.