I have quite a different opinion about PETA [LONGness alert
First, as a whole they don't advocate violence. Small factions that attack human beings or put people in harms way are not necessarily the fault of the organization as a whole.
I'd like to see numbers of euthenized animals from an objective source. Not from an organization that is clearly biased. Regardless, I bet you could site similar statistics to some of the rescue organizations that post here in these forums. Look at it realistically. The sad fact is that there AREN'T enough homes for dogs and cats that end up in shelters. There aren't enough shelters to house them, or vets to care for them or farms willing to take them. The most well intentioned rescuer here can tell you that for every X number of cats adopted XX are put to sleep because no one can adopt them, pay for their care, cure them (if they are sick), domesticate them (if they are feral) or even house them (for lack of room to do so). PETA isn't to blame for euthenizing animals. The people who don't spay and neuter their pets are to blame for the fact that we are here already, with a massive over-population problem and no where for these animals to go.
Every backyard breader who insists that they must experience the birth of kittens, or who thinks kittens are cute and puts their domestic cat through breeding is to blame. Every person who abandons their pregnant animal or the litter it just gave birth to is to blame. Every person who adopts their cute little fuzz balls out before they are spayed/neutered, or who doesn't follow up to ensure it's done is to blame. Everyone who lets their unfixed animal run around the neighborhood is to blame. Pet stores and puppy mills are to blame. Adoption clinics that don't spay and neuter are to blame. Individuals who breed Fluffy because she'll just have the cutest little kittens are to blame. Harsh? Maybe. But true. There is absolutely no reason
anyone with a domestic (non pure-breed) dog or cat should be breeding that animal. Irresponsibility, stupidity or selfishness are not good reasons when there are literally millions of cats (and dogs) already who need good homes.
The fact these animals end up in shelters or with a rescue group or with PETA doesn't make it PETA's fault that they are euthenized. The fact is that there is just a limited number of homes, shelters and rescue organizations equipped and capable of caring for them all. As sad as it is, they are going to end up euthenized.
There was a woman on Oprah recently who had 81 cats, and no, she didn't live in some humongous mansion. The featured Vet was clear to say that these cats would be best off in their own homes individually (or in MUCH smaller groups), or even living wild outside. Whether you agree or not, it's simply a fact that even people with the best intentions don't always provide the best of homes
Originally Posted by Oprah.com
"When you take that many cats and put them into that small of a square-footage area, there are going to be problems," Dr. Rubin says. "They are really very territorial and they have this zone around them that's very, very important to make a good social environment."
Dr. Rubin says it would be much better to leave that animal as a homeless animal outside than putting it into a stressful environment where it will not get the attention it needs.
"One person can't take care of 81 cats and give that kind of [individual] time," Dr. Rubin says. "That cat will always be shy and will live under a piece of furniture or under somebody's bed for [its] entire life." (while cutting to footage of cats hiding under beds, shelves, in cabinets)http://www.oprah.com/tows/slide/2005...0506_203.jhtml
There are stories here on this site from people who've seen homes with multiple cats living in deplorable conditions. Just a home should never be the goal - a GOOD home should be.
All of that said...
PETA is a highly visible organization with views that lean to one extreme. I am not a vegetarian. I am not against all
medical testing. But I've read and heard PETA's message over the years and can take cues in my life from some of it. Their high-profile, high visibility status put them in EVERYONE'S face, which is a good thing, because their message is clear - Be kind to animals
They are not against companion animals or animal adoption. They are clear about the NECESSITY
of spaying and neutering. As for the ownership of otherwise wild animals, PETA's stance and my thoughts on it - ya know, I think I'll keep my opinion to myself for now. I will just say that I don't consider it a black and white argument.
PETA isn't stupid. They KNOW they aren't going to convert the world into herbivores ... but their extreme views improve the conditions in slaughter houses, on farms and ranches and in animal "factories". They recently got Kentucky Fried Chicken to admit that yes, their chickens are not treated in the best of ways -- and the fact this came out is a GOOD thing, regardless of whether you are a vegetarian or not -- maybe it will lead to better standards that these large food chains must follow in the conditions they keep the animals in.
PETA isn't stupid. They know they aren't going to abolish medical testing, but their fight leads to better laboratory conditions and each tested critter being treated with a little more kindness. While they act in a way to promote that medical testing be stopped, their campaigns lead to better conditions for the animals, even when it doesn't illiminate the testing all together. And if there is a better way to test medical theories, maybe, just maybe, at least in part because of PETA's fight, more people will look to find it - and implement it.
I won't say I'm a PETA supporter, but I'm not ANTI-PETA because over the years their media coverage has made me think, and has gotten my friends, family, co-workers, acquaintances talking. Should they target small children with their extreme campaigns? Of course not. Have they made mistakes? Absolutely. But like I already said, I think their message is clear.
Ya know, instead of an organization founding itself on the premise of "we hate PETA" and spending their time gathering PETA statistics and telling everyone to hate PETA, maybe they should put that energy into JUST helping animals. If you think PETA sucks, then create your own organization that is better - but don't ride on the coat tails of a big organization with lots of publicity and put your energy into the "we hate them" argument.
I do think it's sad when groups of people out for the same cause (animal rights, treat animals kindly, be a responsible pet owner, etc.) fight amongst themselves. Unfortunately, there are enough suffering animals in this world for all of us to lend a helping hand, and it still wouldn't be enough.
My 2 cents... okay, maybe 200