PETA’s methods, mission cause for concern
Shelby LeDuc and Alyssa Bloechl
May 2, 2013
The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, is an animal rights organization that has long been publicly supported by communities, large businesses and more recently, celebrities.
PETA ‘rescues’ thousands of animals each year, yet sustains a kill rate of 95 percent. According to beefmagazine.com, a website that provides agricultural business and production information, says that, “In fact, CCF (the Center for Consumer Freedom) says 15 years’ worth of similar records show PETA has killed more than 27,000 animals at its headquarters in Norfolk, VA, since 1998.”
The agricultural industry is feeling the threats of PETA’s extremist agenda as the organization has protested the caging of animals. On the surface, this proposition seems to contain good intentions, however it is naïve to claim that all situations of caging animals are negative.
Farmers have the option to utilize individual pens as a means of restraint in order to interact personally with each individual animal. Problems regarding health and feeding may be intercepted earlier by the farmer with this form of one-on-one, human to animal contact. Stalls and farrowing crates are also made for the safety of the farmer in case an animal is aggressive after giving birth.
According to a 2013 swine group housing study by Rob Knox, of the University of Illinois, and Mark Estienne, of Virginia Tech, “When sow and gilt groups are formed, significant stress and injuries occur as the animals fight to establish social order in the competition for space and feed, which can lead to compromised animal welfare and reproductive failure.”
Subsequent affects of putting a stop to the usage of cages are more detrimental to the animals as well as the overall meat industry. For example, mother pigs, called sows, have been known to accidentally lie on their newborns, killing them. The repetition of events such as these would lead to low production of meat causing production costs within the industry to skyrocket.
If PETA were to succeed in their efforts to slow the production and consumption of meat products, buying a hamburger is going to cost a lot more than it does today. Enforcing humane guidelines on farmers makes it difficult for them to do their job and make a living. PETA and similar organizations should trust that farmers want to create a quality product by using effective practices they have used for generations. Arguably, if people want to support the humane treatment of animals they should not donate to PETA, but rather they should look to their local shelters.