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PETA are sexist and PRO-WAR!!!! Shame on Portland indymedia for covering TRASH!

Treating women like meat: how PETA is missing the forest for the trees
in its sexist campaigns.

PETA has praised the military's operations in Afghanistan, because its propagandistic food drops were, more or less inadvertently, vegan.
What's gotten into PETA?
PETA are sexist and PRO-WAR!!!! Shame on Portland indymedia for covering TRASH!
PETA are sexist and PRO-WAR!!!! Shame on Portland indymedia for covering TRASH!
By Geov Parrish

from  http://www.workingforchange.com/article.cfm?ItemID=12999

Animal rights activists and groups can be notorious for the single-mindedness of their advocacy, willfully ignoring on other oppressions in order to highlight and change our society's shameful abuses of animals. And People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), the country's largest and best-known advocacy group for animal rights (as opposed to more service-oriented groups like the Humane Society or PAWS), has always had an unsettling habit of pushing the envelope in inappropriate ways in order to draw attention to its issues -- and of exploiting and mistreating its young, often female staffers and volunteers. But PETA's recent embrace of the exploitation of women's bodies to agitate for animal rights is beyond dubious. It's a level of offensiveness that would raise an uproar if it were coming from a right-wing political group.

PETA's treatment of women is more than a one-time error in judgment, and it's more than a trend. It's a clearly calculated campaign to stand out in a saturated media environment by appealing to the most prurient possible tastes. Consider:


A television ad in which a woman is being beaten to death with a bat in a subway, with a man ripping off her fur coat, and the inscription: "What if you were killed for your coat?" The ad was pulled by PETA as "too violent in the wake of September 11," but it remained on PETA's web site.

Another ad, this one print, with a blonde woman in an Uncle Sam outfit -- unbuttoned with cleavage showing -- and the inscription "I want YOU to go vegetarian." The woman, it turns out, is Playboy's Kimberly Hefner. The ad was distributed as a cutout poster in "Stars and Stripes," the newspaper of the nation's armed forces, distributed around the world to soldiers as they bomb away. PETA has praised the military's operations in Afghanistan, because its propagandistic food drops were, more or less inadvertently, vegan.

Another ad, with another young, blonde woman in a come-hither centerfold pose and the bizarre inscription "Pleather Yourself."

Another ad, featuring yet another young blonde woman, this time naked, in a classroom setting, only partly turned to the blackboard (underdeveloped cleavage showing) on which she is repeatedly writing "I'd rather go naked than wear fur." The model, it turns out, is Dominique Swain, star of Lolita, and a PETA press release touts her as "the youngest star ever to pose au natural for PETA's anti-fur campaign."
For decades, feminists have linked animal rights with women's rights; some of the earliest modern women's liberation protests involved beauty pageants in which women explicitly decried being treated like meat. Animal rights groups have always relied upon women for the bulk of their organizing, and any serious critique of patriarchal values has always described male dominance and mistreatment of everything: women, animals, the environment.

It's more than a little surreal to have the country's best-known animal rights group seemingly endorsing male violence in virtually all its forms: militarism, male violence against women, objectification of women, even, with the use of a naked actress associated with Lolita, statutory rape -- in the service of ostensibly encouraging people not to commit violence against animals. It's also extraordinarily discrediting, not just to PETA, but to the entire animal rights movement.

PETA's ads would be bad enough if they had been executed by, say, The Gap or some auto company. They would be incomprehensibly offensive promoting a right wing political cause. But in this case they're being trotted out in the service of an ethic that is supposed to oppose oppression, not embrace it. The ads lend unfortunate credence to the long-standing, often spurious rap against animal rights activists -- that they care more about animals than people. Moreover, it makes the rap specific to 51 percent of humanity. The modern-day PETA, it seems, loves animals; it just hates women.

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WATCH THIS HORRIBLY MISOGYNISTIC VIDEO:
 http://stream.realimpact.net/?file=realimpact/peta/video_switchable/furmurder.smi

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If you all want to see exactly what is so disgusting about PETA, please visit the below links:

Woman in an American Flag bikini holding sausages. This was distributed to soldiers around the world, including Afghanistan where PETA "praised the military's operations in Afghanistan, because its propagandistic food drops were, more or less inadvertently, vegan" (from article below):

 http://www.peta.org/pdfs/BBimpotmelynbb.pdf

Woman in a cage wearing a bikini; Hugh Hefner's wife, playboy "playmate" Kimberly Hefner showing cleavage and using the American military's ad campaign "We Want You":

 http://www.csraonsale.com/photos/peta/

Horrible video in which a women wearing a fur coat is beaten to death with a baseball bat by a man on the street:

 http://stream.realimpact.net/?file=realimpact/peta/video_switchable/furmurder.smi

duh! 10.May.2002 10:00

anti-liberal

come on. what do you expect from these people? if it would help their narrow cause, they would welcome any sort of state regulation to address their concerns. Its important to remmeber when dealign with these people that they are not in it for the long haul. They are not explicitly anti-capitalist, anti-state or against any other forms of domination.

this is the shit you have to expect from losers like peta. but indymedia is opne posting so what are they supposed to do, pull peta's post cuz its liberal/lame/sexist?

Vegans against PETA 10.May.2002 10:08

REXELLA

Fucking right on. Winning people over to the idea of earth-conscious eating habits is not an easy task, but there's got to be something better than soft-core and endorsements of U.S. food-drops to get the idea across. There are times when gearing social/political messages to the masses via consumerist imagery is effective (like those posters that briefly appeared in S.F. with a woman whose breast had been removed because of cancer, styled in the "CK One" style, black-and-white erotica).
And a question arises... Did Hefner's wife just "volunteer" her time to PETA for the advertisment? Celebrities abound.... where is the money coming from?
On the other hand, I think the commercial with the man killing the woman for her fur coat is awesome, and if this group had any real commitment to their cause they would've kept it on the air and said to hell with that "innapropriate for the post 9/11 environment" bullshit.
What's next? "Radical Women" in bikinis on Burnside?

One more vegan against PETA 10.May.2002 10:38

....

PETA's campaigns are worthless in my opinion, outreach is good, but at what cost? Upholding a patriarchal system and being so drastically single issue will do nothing but make veganism a sub-culture fad, if that, and allow capitalism to continue its destruction of the planet, while comfortable white middle class liberals convince themselves that animal "welfare", animal "rights", or animal "liberation" will ever be achieved in this society...but atleast they are doing something

PETA thought... 10.May.2002 10:54

jypd

Though their tone might be off, perhaps they are trying to appeal to the stereotypical "protective" instinct for a man to protect his family. If a woman's in a cage, a man would theoretically let her out... if a woman's being beaten, a man would arguably try to stop it. So, in a way, it's not women that are being dehumanized, but it's animals that are being brought up to the level of "family members" that need protection. Granted, there's a lot of shock value involved in these ads, and some of it is in bad taste, but it can provide a memorable image.

why this story became a portland indy feature 10.May.2002 11:17

portland indymedia activist

As the portland indy editorial person who made the PETA story into a feature, these are my personal thoughts on the choice:

For the last couple months or so, some of us who upload features to the center column for portland indymedia have been attempting to automatically make into a feature any newswire item that is original reporting, like this PETA story is. We believe the newswire is the heart and soul of indymedia, and we have been thinking about the features column as primarily being a tool to *promote* the newswire as a place to post original material. That is, the newswire mostly contains re-posts from other publications at this point, and while they are valuable in their own right, and often provide great information, they have already had their "day in the sun" in their original publications, and it is unfortunate how they "push" original stories off the wire. It's been our hope that by highlighting every original post in the features column (or trying), that more people would post original material. It feels like this strategy has been working, and that there's been more original material posted. Which is great.

Now, portland indymedia has no official political ideology (other than being a supporter of free speech) and the posts that we make into features are not vetted to pass muster with any particular philosophy. In the case of this PETA story, there is a wide range of opinions about PETA's tactics, and whether they are ethical or effective, etc. It is not up to portland indymedia to take a stance in this discussion. It is up to portland indymedia to provide a forum for it to occur. That's it.

Along with trying to feature every original story, some of us have also been trying to add links to every related newswire story that gets subsequently posted on the same topic. (Usually this just means adding links to new articles, more photos, etc., like the May Day feature, as they are posted.) In this case, I edited the original PETA feature to include a link to this newswire post, and also wrote up a quick blurb trying to summarize it. I also used the picture that was provided in this post, and the headline, word-for-word. I try to stay as close as possible to the original wording and intent of any newswire item when making it into a feature.

In my opinion, portland indymedia does not exist to give people the news. portland indymedia exists so that ANYONE may give people the news, using this particular web-based interface. Us feature-uploading folks are just here to help amplify independent original voices.

Again, these are my personal thoughts and philosophies -- I am not speaking for the editorial group as a whole. The editorial group has no spokesperson, and its membership is amorphous.

Anyone who would like to have a voice in the process that leads to features being uploaded to the center column (a process that is contantly evoloving), may join the editorial team. Editorial folks meet every Saturday at 4:00 p.m. at the Red and Black Cafe. Discussions about features also take place on a listserve, which you can join at:  http://lists.indymedia.org/mailman/listinfo/imc-portland-editorial

Like most indymedias, portland changes as different people come and go, and as the content on the newswire changes. indymedia is an open project and everyone is always welcome to participate. Nothing is static.

Peta's a national organization.. 10.May.2002 17:57

oh heck! mbthink@hotmail.com

I'm a vegan. I've personaly been helped out of dire staits by someone who worked at peta in DC. I think that some of thier ads do effectually objectafy women. I think that more than a few of them seem obtuse enough that they fly over the heads of people who don't belong to the vegan liberal subculture. Heck when I see some desgusting looking barbie figure done up like uncle sam- I get confused. I think that maybee some of the peta folks do in fact like in a bubble. I've told them this. Despite this I have a lot of respect for them. Not because they head some national vegan outreach org, but because I've seen them go the extra mile to help vegans I know on the local level. Peta helps grassroots vegan organizers get their shit off the ground when a lot of other groups won't. They do this INTERNATIONALLY. Crazy huh? This is precisly why the folks at peta were bieng targeted in Craig Rosebraugh's congressional subpena. Right along side Ben and Jerry's. You look at some huge national organization and ask why they can't just put thier multi million dallor budget to work shutting down yer local primate center. You look at thier ads and think do vegans look at me this way? I don't blame you. What I do say is this- recognize that peta is charged with representing many veg- or VEGAN communities not just yours
Let's work to create communities of resistance localy that represent our values, and not the values of the sytem that oppresses us.

All respect to you and yers!
heck

A better way 10.May.2002 23:24

idea girl

what is peta trying to do? they are trying to educate people about the way that animals are used and abused.

what is the most effective way to do this? take the gruesome, graphic photos of these animals, enlarge them to life size, affix them to signs and use them for protests.

NO one wants to see photos of animals like this, so what better way to show people what it is that is happening to these animals.

what is the best way to teach? show people what it is that you are trying to raise awareness about.

what on earth is the value of putting women wearing "skimpy black outfits" on the streets in an attempt to STOP the vivesection of animals? how is this going to help to promote changing this practice? it ain't gonna.

show people what they do NOT want to see vs. what (some) do want to see. in other words, the masses should not be "treated to a display of skin" (from the original post) but instead shown what these helpless animals are being subjected to.

"Man killing woman is awesome"....WTF???? 11.May.2002 13:23

anti-patriarch

How can anyone consider that commercial "awesome"???? HELLO>>>>>>>>>It's a vicious MALE killing an unarmed womyn with a BASEBALL BAT!!!!

WHAT KIND OF FUCKING MISOGYNIST "ANARCHIST" are you to say such a thing??? Women are killed like that all the time because they are physically weaker and oppressed ALL OVER THE WORLD!!!

Why isn't it a man getting beaten by a woman?? Why aren't men wearing bikinis and sitting in cages??

The answer is that PETA is using AMERIKKKAN FASCIST MISOGYNIST CULTURE to sell their bullshit and SAFE "save the animals" line.

HELLO!!!!!! Animals will always be oppressed and mistreated under patriarchal capitalism...and the environment is DYING because of rich greedy MEN who care nothing about womyn. The only womyn capitalist patriarchs like are are on their knees -- slaves to the AMERIKKKAN MALE system.

FUCK PETA.....FUCKING WAR MONGERS AND PATRIARCHS.....FUCKING HOLLYWOOD PLAYBOY SELLOUTS.

PETA is pro-military 11.May.2002 13:32

anarcho-feminist

It's time to say "get lost" to PETA. They are ruining the image of devoted ELF and ALF activists. They send their sexist trash out to the U.S. Military and expect these macho fuckheads to turn vegan! HA!!!! Ridiculous!!

The soldiers probably beat-off to these sleezy Hollywood-style ads before they go out killing "darkies".

Everytime time I see a PETA protest, I gonna hork up a huge ball of spit and aim right for the SEXIST PIGS gauking at the dumbass pieces of flesh on the street.

Those women have the same brainless mentality of strippers. Who cares if they pretend to care about animals.....they don't give a damn about women.

a modest proposal 14.May.2002 18:20

psychoactiveTOAD

hey jperson... i'll give you $5 if you send PETA pictures of yourself lounging in a tub of veganaise. if they don't use them in any of their campaings then we'll know they're really sexist bastards.

Open Your Eyes! 25.May.2002 12:27

Meat Is Murder

CHEERS to PeTA for having the most effective marketing campaigns I have ever seen. PeTA is a wonderful organization that I am proud to be a member of. The women and men of PeTA devote their lives to saving animals and making this shitty world a better place to live.

PeTA's ads arent about objectifing women. They are about grabbing peoples attention and giving a voice to the voiceless. Using beautiful and eye catching images is smart and effective marketing. If you want to reach middle class white male america what better way to do it. I hate to burst the feminist bubble here but the horrible way we treat animals in our society is not because it is a male dominated one. If it were egalitarian or even run by women the animals would still be treated like shit. This is a human fault not a male fault. Humans on the whole see non human animals as lesser beings. Man or woman, oopss excuse me, womyn (LOL) either way you deal the power the animals are still in trouble. Not until we as a people learn to respect all life as equal and important will the animals be free.

Animals can not speak for themselves, they have no choice in what is done to them, people do. The "objectification" of women argument is a little hard to swallow when women continue to willingly participate in these acts of "objectification". And if by objectification you mean using an image of what our society views as beautiful then it its simpliest terms any photographs you have up that have a person in them, you better take them down because you are objectifying that person.

Our society is based on supply and demand. Sex sells and sells well! Do we blame the people who are putting the message out there or do we blame the people who keep buying it? Guns dont kill people, people kill people. Pornography doesnt rape women, power hungry assholes rape women. Song lyrics dont make kids kill themselves, pressures of everyday life do that. Bottom line is this, dont shoot the messanger! Solve the problem, dont blame the symptoms. People have free will and the ability to make choices, animals dont! Dont try and take away from this important message because PeTA has pretty woman in their campaigns to get their point across. This form of activism works, if it didnt PeTA wouldnt be around and the non human animals of this world would be in a lot worse shape.

in response to MEAT IS MURDER 20.Dec.2004 10:34

end all forms of oppression

i've been following the media controversy over PETA for some time as i had a friend and fellow activist who began working for PETA, which seemed to only bring out his sexist impulses.

to try to just be objective, no matter how hard it is, i'd like to say that i think PETA does some wonderful things. their work is important, but the turn it's taken lately scares and disheartens me, frankly.

Meat is Murder, you say that "PeTA's ads arent about objectifing women. They are about grabbing peoples attention and giving a voice to the voiceless. Using beautiful and eye catching images is smart and effective marketing. If you want to reach middle class white male america what better way to do it." I think you hit the nail on the head with "middle class white male america"-- BUT THAT IS PRECISELY THE PROBLEM. Why is PETA only aiming for this audience? Why ISN'T it marketed toward making more women or minorities vegans or vegetarians?

And I really hate to burst YOUR bubble, but I do think the majority of women I know think PETA's ads DO objectify women. How would you respond to the ad where violence against women is sensationalized, and a woman is beat to death by a man with a bat? How about the endless parade of homogeneous blondes that emphasizes their appearances and not their brains or skills? Who needs another cheesecake shot of a woman lying in a bored, vapid come-hither pose, something we can see in any magazine or television shot? I don't care if sex sells, I expect something better out of an organization that seeks to end oppression for one group (and thus hopefully, as bell hooks said, for all, or else you cannot). Personally I am inspired by and attracted to women who are strong and sexy, smart and funny, in real life or media. Why doesn't PETA ask women like Janeane Garofalo, Angela Bassett, Meryl Streep, Tina Fey, Margaret Cho, or Laila Ali to do their ads? Women of substance who are known for their brains AND talent AND sex appeal. Where are the women like that, the ones who inspire me to be a stronger, smarter, more creative woman? To tell you the truth, my eye would stay on that in a TV spot or on a highway billboard much longer than some routine, boring cheesecake shot that I'm used to seeing on everything, thus don't look at as much. But I guess if PETA is aiming for middle-class white males mostly, that's what they'll use. And that's just sad. It says what they care about, what they think the locus of power is-- "See, if we can make white middle-class males vegetarians and vegans, we've changed the important people's minds."

You also say "Animals can not speak for themselves, they have no choice in what is done to them, people do." You go on to say it's hard to swallow the objectification against women argument when women are objectifying animals. So, because women are meat-eaters too, it's okay to objectify them? And also, I hate to point out to you something it seems you would already know, but women all across the world cannot speak for themselves, their voices have been silenced, they have no choice what is done to them, their bodies abused, their political freedoms silenced. As someone who has lived all across the world, I have seen this firsthand. Who do you think suffers the brunt of war? Women. The political is written across the bodies of women. In Pakistan and India's territorial disputes, there were hundreds and hundreds of rapes, in Bosnia, in Korea, in Iran, in every country imaginable and yes, here in America. Whenever a woman is raped, domestically abused, belittled or sexually harassed by a teacher, employer, fellow teammate/classmate, etc, or given unequal pay or benefits, our whole country suffers. I have worked in a domestic violence shelter and seen how women's voices have been silenced. So not all people have a choice in what is done to them, or can speak for themselves. Our society silences and chains some people, and just shuts other people out who don't have the education, agency, tools or lingo to participate in our so-called participatory democracy.

How can we expect our world to become less violent and for men to stop abusing women when all we show our children (and adults) in the news is that it's okay to bomb the hell out of other people, blow up mosques, temples, schools, etc etc etc? That violence is DEFINITELY translated into our culture. Also, how can we expect women to gain true equality and freedom when there is only one blonde barbie doll image of women in the media, and it's even enforced ritualistically by an organization for animals that's supposed to be anti-oppression??? I'm not saying get rid of the blonde doll image, because sure she exists in real life, but fill up the media with lots of diverse images to better represent the diversity of color, size, skill, interest, and occupation of women.

And I hate to say it, but as much as I enjoy certain forms of pornography, it definitely contributes to a fetishization and objectification of women-- creating a blurring between teh lines of fantasy and reality. We need to educate regarding pornography, instead of covering it up. Music videos have become the soft core pornography of our era, creating a place where women hardly speak (have you ever noticed that besides an occasional chorus or backup, they seldom have a voice?) So if someone has no voice and is constantly acquiescent to whatever you want, it's easuer to translate that image into real life. Young adolescent boys often have more contact with women in these media images than real life women, and it's easier for them to get a hard stereotypical image of what women should be like these days. I think it's dangerous in a way-- it DOES contribute to violence against women. And yeah, guns being readily available, on the legal or black market, and violence in the media and movies DO contribute to violence. So I think you can blame the messenger, if he comes armed with a stock of images that fetishize and objectify the victim or a gun for you to commit violence with.

i know it sounds cheesy, but i just hope we can work together to decrease violence and oppression of all forms-- not alleviate one at the cost of another.

Petas intervention 09.Jul.2006 22:56

Defender

Peta in large does good work at defending the innocent animals and creatures,,,,and is an activist organization that is radical,,,,but we need radicals to stop the tide of torture and killing of these beautiful creatures.