People for the Ethical Treatment of Ants?

The Los Angeles Times wrote a profile this week of Milton Levine who, in 1956, created a novelty craze with his Uncle Milton Ant Farm. Since 1956, Levine’s company has sold more than 20 million ant farms and sales for the product are still strong.

The reporter decided to call People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals for their take on ant farms, and PETA’s Stephanie Boyles obliged with the following,

Ants are sentient beings, like we are, and have a right to life like we do, and they shouldn’t be shown the level of disrespect the producers of ant farms show them. We can learn about ants without having an ant farm. Kids end up getting tired of them and they perish.

Usually anti-animal rights folks are told that they are being disingenous when they claim that animal rights will inevitably be pushed to its logical outcome of granting insects and other very primitive life forms rights. It is nice to see PETA admit that it thinks even ants are “sentient beings” like us and should be accorded rights.


Creator of the Ant Farm Finds That His Tiny Workers Can Still Pull Their Weight. David Kelly, Los Angeles Times, August 5, 2002.

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