Eight Animals

Dear Colleagues:

This morning’s AOL News carried a story, PETA’S Euthanasia Rates Have Critics Fuming.

The story states that PETA:

euthanizes over 90 percent of the dogs and cats relinquished to its headquarters in Norfolk, Va. In 2009, PETA euthanized 2,301 dogs and cats — 97 percent of those brought in — and adopted only eight, according to Virginia state figures. And the rate of these killings has been increasing. From 2004 to 2008, euthanasia at PETA increased by 10 percent.

I checked the documents that PETA filed with the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and confirmed that the AOL story is correct. PETA killed 681 dogs and 1620 cats. PETA also killed 51 “other companion animals.”

That’s a total of 2352 animals.

And PETA adopted eight animals. Eight animals.

That is a disgrace. “Euthanasia” is death that is in the interest of the human or nonhuman euthanized. Euthanasia is never in the interests of a healthy being.

PETA apparently shares Peter Singer’s view that a relatively painless death does not constitute a harm for nonhuman animals because, unlike humans, most nonhumans are not self-aware and cannot grasp what it means to “have a life.” In order to have an interest in your continued existence, you must be human. So those 2352 animals that PETA killed weren’t really harmed. They did not care about their lives anyway. Nothing was taken from them when they were killed.

What unmitigated, speciesist nonsense.

According to the Economic Research Institute, PETA has revenue of $31,053,316 and assets of $19,759,999.

How much of this money went for an adoption program?

How many PETA celebrities are promoting the adoption of PETA animals rather than taking off their clothes to “go naked” for the glory and relentless publicity and promotion of PETA?

Eight animals? It would seem that the office staff could have adopted more than that.

Combine this with PETA’s sexism, and its giving awards to slaughterhouse designers and grocery chains that sell “happy” meat and animal products, and it is clear that PETA is nothing but a joke, albeit, for the animals, a most tragic one.

Gary L. Francione
©2010 Gary L. Francione

P.S. Added March 11, 2010:

Last evening, I made a comment on Twitter:

Temple Grandin announces that she is going to design “humane” facilities at PETA to handle slaughter of thousands of “rescued” animals.

This was obviously intended to parody the fact that PETA gave Grandin an award and they call her a “visionary” for designing slaughterhouses that PETA praises.

A considerable number of people thought that the comment was serious. I find it fascinating that PETA has gone so far in the direction of exploiting animals that people would think the comment was serious. That tells us a great deal about the confusion rampant in a movement in which “animal rights” means “we take in 2300 animals; we kill all but 8.”

By the way, I also posted this on Twitter:

HBO to retitle documentary on PETA’s Newkirk from “I Am An Animal” to “I Am An Animal (But Not One of the Ones We ‘Rescue’ and Kill).”

That was also said in jest although it, too, is a possibility, I suppose.