Friends of Animals’ Priscilla Feral distributed a letter this week attacking People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals for that group’s endorsement of Burger King’s Veggie Burger.
Following Burger King’s announcement that it would offer a vegetarian offering, a number of animal rights groups and activists have heralded it as a chance to promote vegetarianism, with Alex Hershaft going so far as to opine that if the BK Veggie Burger fails, “it will set us back substantially.”
Feral will have none of that.
Much as been said about supporting Burger King because they now offer a product erroneously dubbed the “BK Veggie Burger.”
The burger is cooked on the same grill as the meat, unless one knows to ask for a special order microwave-heated burger. The strict religious vegetarian will have to request special treatment; she must feel comfortable with microwaved food; and, of course, she will have to know to ask.
Even if all these factors are met, the vegan will have to bring her own bread: Burger King’s buns contain butter.
Butter comes from an industry which exploits the reproductive cycles of cows throughout their lives. An enterprise which directly results in the production of veal.
Feral goes on to attack PETA over its BK Veggie Art Contest (see http://www.peta.org/feat/bkcartcontest/index.html) which asks people under 18 to design ads for the new veggie burger and promises that, “Each month all summer — June, July, and August — PETA will treat five winners and 20 of their friends to a BK Veggie Burger Party.”
Feral complains that,
To enter the contest, you must be 18 or under. We find it incomprehensible that an animal protection group would emulate the tactics of major fast-food companies: persuading parents to frequent burger restaurants by enticing their children. The contest even gets children to act as little advertisers for Burger King, as they “design an eye-catching advertisement” for this multinational giant.
(With “multinational giant” meaning much the same thing for Feral that “Satan” does for a fire and brimstone preacher).
Citing the case of McDonald’s, which used a beef flavoring ingredient in its fries that many people thought were vegetarian, Feral accuses Burger King and PETA of engaging in the same sort of bait and switch and with the same possible legal consequences,
. . . We often believe that our government will protect the consumer from food fraud. But it took a lawsuit from distraught Hindus to get the attention of McDonald’s.
How much sadder if ethical and religious vegetarians have to sue animal protection groups for misleading the public about the ingredients in Burger King products.
Now if we could just get Feral to threaten a lawsuit against PETA for it lies and distortions about medical research, we would be all set.
The Burger King “Veggie Burger.” Priscilla Feral, E-Mail Communication, Friends of Animals, May 20, 2002.