Recognizing misleading animal activism (cough, PETA, cough)

Scrolling through my Twitter newsfeed the other day, I stumbled across a post from PETA that thoroughly pissed me off (no, I do not follow PETA on Twitter, don’t worry).

The post was linked to an article titled “‘Game of Thrones’ Star Jerome Flynn: Reject Cruelty, Go Vegan,” and since I am a huge Game of Thrones fan, I wanted to check it out (in case you’re unsure who Jerome Flynn is, he plays Bronn in the show).

Naturally, the PETA video shows Flynn advocating for veganism for the sake of animal welfare and shows clips of inhumane treatment of animals, specifically chickens, ducks, and pigs. Throughout the video, Fylnn emphasizes how these conditions are normal in agriculture, and the article/Flynn goes so far as to say that:

“In the video, Flynn also reminds people that these disgraceful conditions aren’t limited to ‘just a few bad apples’ as the meat and dairy industries would like us to believe. They are the norm for animals around the globe who are killed for food.”

I cannot stress enough how inherently dangerous this type of attitude is in respect to the agricultural industry, specifically the men and women who devote their lives to caring for animals and raising them as a food source for human consumption.

I have no issue with people who choose vegetarianism or veganism whatsoever. It is a personal choice, and I respect that. What I fail to respect, however, is organizations like PETA who go out of their way to tarnish the names and reputations of farmers who commonly care for their animals better than themselves and refer to animal cruelty as “the norm” in the ag industry.

The mistreatment of animals is absolutely NOT the norm in agriculture. Yes, it happens, and in the rare instances where the footage from PETA videos is a reality, education and advocacy to prevent such mistreatment from continuing are key. But, do not make a bold claim that is completely and entirely false that suggests “disgraceful conditions … are the norm for animals around the globe who are killed for food.” This is false, this is misleading, and, most of all, dangerous.

Photo credit: <a href=””>Momentchensammler</a&gt; on <a href=””>Visual hunt</a> / <a href=””&gt; CC BY</a>

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