(This series on PETA in The Huffington Post was a finalist for the Canadian Online Publishing Awards.)
A celebrity is at her most vulnerable when naked. This is when she is least likely to make sensible decisions. Often she is chilly and nervous. Hence, it is while naked that a famous person — who genuinely loves animals — finds herself shilling for people who are genuinely committed to slaughtering them.
How does a saint become a butcher?
I am convinced that Ingrid Newkirk, the founder of PETA (“People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals”) was once a good person. What happened?
The story of Newkirk’s moral awakening — outrage in response to betrayal — is genuinely affecting. In 1972, when she was a young stockbroker in Maryland, Newkirk rescued a group of abandoned kittens and brought them to an animal shelter.
Nathan Winograd believes that PETA’s founder, Ingrid Newkirk, is mentally ill. That to him is the only credible explanation for her monstrous compulsion to kill healthy shelter animals. In contrast, I have argued that she is fully rational: Her viciousness has its own internal logic; moreover, it is counterproductive to psychologize evil.
As with many of you, I’ve been worried about the toll that Hurricane Sandy has taken upon animals, especially in New Jersey and New York. And I couldn’t help wondering: will the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) have the gall to raise money off this disaster, after their widely publicized disgrace in the wake of Katrina?
No need to wonder.
Animal lovers across America have been all but crippled with loathing this week. The rage has been boiling over everywhere I turn on the internet: in chat rooms, on Facebook, on bulletin boards.
You would have to have something deeply wrong with you not to be thoroughly disgusted at the prospect of Michael Vick taking in a pet dog. Decent people feel that this man — who did not merely run a dogfighting ring, but personally hanged dogs, drowned them and beat them to death — should be prevented from getting anywhere near an innocent creature.
Bill Maher is a merciless bastard. And I say that with the greatest respect. Lesser guys may be conned by righteous charlatans — not Bill. He’s the one in the front row, shining a rude light on the emperor’s flashed genitals. Lo, if you have stupid beliefs, Maher’s going to haul your ass onto the Carpet of Reason. Hence, he is pretty much the last person you’d expect to get sucked in by PETA, Ingrid Newkirk’s cult of euthanasia.
Big-hearted people tend to have warm and truly fuzzy thoughts about the Humane Society of the United States.
This is, after all, the organization that operates shelters nationwide and saves hundreds of thousands of animals. This is the selfless organization that stands up for the voiceless and abused. Although there are countless alternatives, this is the charity you should be sending your money to if you care about pets.
PETA may soon lose the right to kill healthy pets. As I and many others have verified, the headquarters of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals in Norfolk, Virginia kills 97 per cent of the animals delivered into its care.
Norfolk, however, may soon pass legislation to make the city a “No Kill” zone.
This is a remarkable development in the growing battle to deny PETA the right to liquidate pets at its so-called “Shelter of Last Resort.” The group has already killed over 27,000 creatures.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals employs only one argument in defense of its right to kill adoptable shelter pets. This is an abuse called “hoarding.” It is in fact an especially vile form of cruelty — animals are warehoused in filthy, overcrowded cages, where they then die, slowly and in misery.
This, we are told, is the reason that PETA’s founder, Ingrid Newkirk, is busy trying to prevent No Kill legislation from being passed in the group’s home town of Norfolk, Virginia.
Animals will never have the right to euthanize PETA’s founder, Ingrid Newkirk. This, arguably, is the intellectual flaw at the core of her special interpretation of animal rights. For PETA, it is a political movement primarily focused on the right to determine when and how an animal should die. The decision is never reciprocal, however: Newkirk has the right to kill — and PETA has killed tens of thousands of pets — but her own life is protected by law.
When the No Kill shelter in Shelby County, Kentucky, recently announced that they had run out of space — and were hence going to have to start killing healthy dogs and cats — officials received a nice basket of gourmet cookies, with a note signed by PETA: “Thank you for doing the right thing for animals.”
Surely I’m joking here.
(The fourth part of an exposé of PETA’s mass butchery of healthy pets.)
“Screw PETA,” quoth Jennifer Lawrence, the actress of the moment. This is a young woman with genuine courage: a good thing, as she will likely be terrorized in the months to come.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals do not play nice. Not at all.
Fifty years ago, the Xoloitzcuintli — the Mexican Hairless dog — was on the edge of extinction. Now one sleeps in my bed. Whether this is an improvement in the creature’s circumstance can be debated. Other bald news, however, is unquestionably good: After centuries honing its attributes as the world’s weirdest (not ugliest) dog, the Mexican Hairless was officially welcomed this year at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
Jews aren’t allowed to worry about their pets suffering. That would be shallow. In particular, Jews aren’t allowed to worry about their pets being hurt by Hamas, because that would be truly shallow. God knows, Israelis deserve to be targeted, so if Hamas causes their beloved cats or dogs to suffer, that’s just fine.
Though I find this premise appalling, it seems to be the conventional wisdom.