Written by PETA
For the past 65 years during Yellville,
Arkansas' annual "Turkey Trot Festival," residents have hurled live turkeys out of
at high altitudes for the "pleasure" of watching the wild birds—who
naturally only fly short distances at low altitudes—drop to the Earth. Many are
badly injured or killed, and others are tackled and taken home to be eaten for
Thanksgiving dinner. But this year, not only were no turkeys tossed, two lucky
birds were also rescued and are now living in a loving home!
The Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA) swarmed the area, promising that any pilot caught throwing turkeys would
risk losing his or her license. Apparently, the would-be turkey-tossers decided
it wasn't worth the risk—not one turkey was dropped! PETA is also offering a $5,000 reward
(which still stands) for information leading to the arrest and conviction of
anyone caught throwing turkeys out of airplanes.
To "get back at PETA" for objecting
to this cruel tradition, one woman tried to buy two flightless, domesticated
turkeys so that she could hurl them from the roof of the town courthouse! A
PETA activist quickly intervened, warning the sellers that they would be aiding
and abetting in a crime by selling the birds for this purpose, and she convinced
them to give the birds to her instead. After getting veterinary care for one of
the birds, who had suffered injuries to her face and neck, likely from abuse, PETA
found the birds a wonderful home. Now named Lori and Walfredo, the turkeys are
living the good life on a spacious
farm with a loving family.
Written by Michelle Sherrow
The meat industry thrives on the abuse of animals,
so it comes as no surprise that former pig factory-farm workers are alleging
that the management of Murphy-Brown—a subsidiary of the
world's largest pig producer, Smithfield Foods—turned a blind eye to sexual
harassment of female employees.
In a case that went before a federal jury this week,
one woman claims that female staff were groped by male coworkers, were spied on
in the shower via peepholes, and had their underwear stolen from their lockers.
The harassment allegedly went on for years despite complaints to supervisors. It is worth
noting that the men accused of the harassment—said to include putting what is
suspected to be semen on women's underwear—worked at a breeding farm where sows
were artificially inseminated, which is typically done by men armed with bags
of boar semen and tubes that they shove into pigs' reproductive tracts.
Unfortunately, PETA investigations show that failure
to discipline workers for sexual abuse seems to be standard policy at many factory farms, particularly when the
victims are animals.
Our investigators have recorded many
incidents of sexual abuse of animals, including a Hormel Foods Corp. supplier's
farm supervisor who rammed a cane into a pig's vagina; an Aviagen Turkeys, Inc.,
employee who pinned a female turkey to the ground and mimicked raping her; and a
Butterball employee who repeatedly shoved a finger into a turkey's cloaca. After
the footage was released, six of the Hormel supplier's workers
admitted guilt to charges of livestock abuse and neglect, and three Aviagen employees
were convicted after facing the first-ever felony indictments for cruelty to
farmed birds by factory-farm workers in the U.S.
You can avoid supporting the sexual abuse of both
animals and humans by choosing a vegan
diet—and urging everyone you know to do the same.
by Heather Faraid Drennan
To encourage Canadians to celebrate a cruelty-free Thanksgiving, sexy PETA "pilgrims" landed at Toronto's Old City Hall for a festive Tofurky giveaway. Thankful Torontonians gobbled up the demonstration—literally. The pilgrims handed out 50 delicious, meat-free Tofurky roasts in less than five minutes!
Turkeys are intelligent, affectionate animals, so please have the "grace" to leave them off the table. Remember: If you wouldn't eat your dog, don't eat a turkey.
Written by Heather Faraid Drennan
Mahatma Gandhi said, "The
greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its
animals are treated." What, then, can we surmise about the U.S., where 59
billion animals a year suffer intensive confinement, are deprived of all that
is natural to them, have their bodies mutilated by dehorning, castration, ear
cropping, and more, all before they are killed for a fleeting taste of flesh?
October 2, Gandhi's birthday, marks World Farm Animals Day, a day to honor Gandhi's
advocacy of nonviolence and vegetarianism and to remember the animals killed
for what he called "the satisfaction of our bodily wants."
plain facts are appalling: Every year in the U.S. alone, more than 7 billion chickens and 275 million turkeys have their legs slammed
into shackles and their throats cut before being immersed—often while still
conscious—in scalding water to remove their feathers. Many of the 118 million pigs killed annually are improperly
stunned and scream in pain as they are scalded to death. More than 39 million cows are hung upside down
and left to dangle with all their body weight suspended by one leg before their
throats are cut and they are skinned and gutted, some aware of what is
happening to them as their bodies are hacked apart.
humanity is to make real moral progress, we must treat animals as sentient
beings whose lives are their own and do not belong to us. This World Farm
Animals Day, we're trying to get 10,000 people to visit Meat.org and watch the
site's "Glass Walls" video. Please share the page on Facebook, on
Twitter, and in any other way you that can imagine to get the word out there!
Written by Michelle
Courtesy of our friends at PETA Germany, TV viewers in that country
learned how birds are routinely mistreated and neglected by Wiesenhof (the leading
German poultry brand) when the ARD network aired a program that
included undercover footage from PETA Germany's investigation of a Wiesenhof turkey farm.
The sizable audience saw workers as they kicked and threw turkeys, birds thrown
roughly into cages, animals who fell off trucks, and other abuses. And this was
hardly a fluke—last year, another PETA Germany investigation found similar nastiness at a Wiesenhof chicken farm.
Of course, things are no better on factory farms outside Germany, so
if you haven't taken cruelty off the table, pledge to go vegan right now.
Written by Jeff
Update: The CW affiliate in Columbus, Ohio, WWHO-TV, has agreed to air PETA's "Turkey Terrorism" TV spot twice a day from August 15 through 19 during Divorce Court and Judge Karen, two shows whose audience consists largely of stay-at-home parents who are often in charge of grocery shopping.
It took months—and people in at least 26 states to fall victim to a super-antibiotic-resistant strain of salmonella (with at least one known fatality)—for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to recall 36 million pounds of ground turkey.
While 36 million pounds is a lot of turkey, it's likely that far more than that is infected with sickening salmonella. In the most recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention analysis, poultry was the most common source of foodborne illness in the United States. As you likely know, bacteria spread like wildfire on filthy factory farms.
Turkeys spend their lives crammed by the thousands into windowless sheds and mired in their own accumulated waste. To keep them alive in these conditions and to make them grow so abnormally large so quickly that they have trouble walking—which results in pressure on their hearts that causes more than a few of them to die before they reach the slaughterhouse floor—farmers feed the birds antibiotics, which leads to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
Want to stick with turkey that won't make you sick or cause animal suffering? Look no further than delicious Tofurky products. Your body will thank you.
Written by Michelle Sherrow
Justice has been served for the victims of Warren Jeffs—the polygamist sect leader who was sentenced to life in prison for sexually assaulting two underage girls. This is good news, but for countless other young victims of sexual abuse, there is no justice. To make this point, PETA plans to place this billboard in San Angelo, Texas:
In 30 years of investigating factory farms and slaughterhouses, PETA has repeatedly caught workers taking their issues out on animals by violently beating them, screaming at them, and, yes, sexually assaulting them.
At a Hormel supplier's farm in Iowa, for example, PETA's investigation revealed that a supervisor rammed a cane into a pig's vagina and boasted that he had thrust gate rods into pigs' anuses. A worker urged PETA's investigator to beat a pig as if she had scared away a "voluptuous little f---ing girl." The employee was also caught on video shouting to a supervisor to beat pigs and to expose his genitals to get them to move.
At a Butterball slaughterhouse, a PETA investigator saw—in addition to other horrific cruelty—a worker shove his finger into a turkey's vagina. Another worker mimed raping a bird whose legs and head he'd shackled.
At Aviagen Turkeys, Inc., in West Virginia, the "world's leading poultry breeding company," a worker was indicted for cruelty to animals after being caught on video pinning a turkey to the ground and mimicking raping her. He reportedly later told police that he'd done this to dozens of other turkeys.
We can easily shake our heads in disgust at Warren Jeffs' crimes, but if we eat meat, we may be supporting similar acts of sexual violence. Please take a stand against all sexual abuse and exploitation by ordering a free vegetarian/vegan starter kit today.
Written by Lindsay Pollard-Post
It took only 45 minutes for temperatures inside a crowded Johnston County, North Carolina, barn to skyrocket when the barn lost power, killing 50,000 chickens. On one Kansas farm, nearly 4,500 turkeys died in one weekend during a scorching 100-degree heat wave. Birds in barns that aren't air conditioned sometimes die when they crowd together at doorways in the vain hope of catching a breeze.
As heartbreaking as these animals' deaths are, the fates they faced otherwise were arguably worse. After being confined by the tens of thousands to filthy, windowless sheds, the birds would have been thrown into crates and loaded onto trucks bound for the slaughterhouse. There, they would have been hung upside down with their delicate legs forced into shackles (which often causes broken bones), their throats would have been slit, and if they had dodged the blade, they would have been scalded to death in a defeathering tank.
Neither being baked nor boiled to death is fair to these sensitive, intelligent animals. To help protect birds from suffering, encourage your friends and family to give a cruelty-free diet a try.
Written by Michelle Sherrow
Do you like to listen to music, sing, and be affectionate? So do turkeys. Do you exercise, worry about your appearance, and sometimes play favorites with people? So do turkeys. If you have children, do you love them and fiercely protect them from danger? So do turkeys.
But unlike us, turkeys raised for food will never get to do any of these things. These sensitive birds, whom Ben Franklin deemed "true American originals," will be crammed inside crowded, windowless sheds and bred to grow so fat that many become crippled or die of heart attacks. Most will have parts of their beaks or toes cut off without pain relief. At five or six months old, they will be thrown into a truck and driven through all weather extremes to the slaughterhouse. There, they will be slammed upside down into shackles and dragged through a "stunning" bath to immobilize them (but not necessarily render them unconscious) before their throats are cut. Some birds are still conscious when they are dunked in hot defeathering tanks and are scalded to death.
Do you wish this wasn't the case? So do turkeys. Let World Week for the Abolition of Meat inspire you to make every day "Turkey Day" by leaving these birds off your plate.
German company Lohmann Tierzucht (LTZ)—the parent company of Aviagen Turkeys, Inc.—is facing cruelty-to-animals charges as a result of evidence gathered by PETA Germany. Authorities have issued warrants for alleged violations of Germany's Animal Welfare Act (including amputating the toes and crests of millions of chickens in order to distinguish their breeds and sexes). Convictions could bring sentences of up to three years of imprisonment plus fines.
You'll remember that PETA's 2008 undercover investigation of Aviagen documented that workers were breaking turkeys' necks, stomping on their heads, and shoving feces and feed into turkeys' mouths. Three former Aviagen workers were indicted on cruelty-to-animals charges—the first-ever felony indictments for cruelty to farmed birds by factory farm workers in the U.S. All three men were convicted and sentenced; one was sent to jail and all were barred from owning or working with any animals for five years.
The moral of this story: If you abuse farmed animals anywhere on the globe, sooner or later you're going to get caught.
Written by Paula Moore
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.