Oxygen Media, the cable television channel founded by Oprah Winfrey and others, is running a promotion with the Heifer Project to send chickens and other livestock to families in Afghanistan. The “Send a Chick to Afghanistan” project notes that, “Poultry will help because the birds are so adaptable to the environment, supply an excellent source of nutrition through their eggs, and they’re easy to transport.”
This wonderful program has drawn the wrath of United Poultry Concerns which issued a press release condemning the shipment of chickens to Afghanistan. According to UPC,
The Heifer Project and Oxygen Media are fueling the world’s bloodshed and chaos by adding animal misery and abuse to U.S. bombs, landmines, and civilian suffering and death in Afghanistan. Promoting the idea that sending animals to be tended and fed by famine-stricken countries plagued with drought and American bombs is absurd and misleading.
Well, when it comes to absurd and misleading rhetoric, UPC and Karen Davis are certainly the experts, but in this case it’s yet more absurdity from UPC. The odd thing is that UPC slips up in sticking with the party line. In the very next paragraph of its press release, it suggests that,
People who truly want to help the people of Afghanistan should support famine relief organizations that provide direct aid. For example, the Red Cross is providing rice, oil, and peas for immediate consumption.
Oops. The Red Cross is on PETA/PCRM’s list of forbidden charities because it funds animal research.
This writer recommends giving to both organizations if you are concerned about relief efforts in Afghanistan.
UPC Action Alert: Protest “Send a Chick to Afghanis-Scam.” United Poultry Concerns, Press Release, March 6, 2002.
Some animal rights activists have long been proponents of using the methods of terror — destroying buildings and other property to push their political agenda. But in the wake of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, some animal rights activists chose to show just how callous they were toward human life.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals had to weigh in, of course, although the organization seemed to have a quick change of heart. The day after the attacks, PETA issued a press release on its web site which was yanked off the site almost as soon as it had been put up.
Although national news media were reporting that phone service in New York City was suffering under the weight of people concerned about relatives not to mention the ongoing rescue work which had various local, state, and federal authorities staggering to keep up, PETA actually urged people to call Mayor Rudolph Giuliani to express their concerns about abandoned pets. In the press release, PETA said,
Mayor Giuliani has a poor record when it comes to animals. In 1998 he refused to allow desperate New Yorkers whose apartment building’s scaffolding collapsed, the opportunity to tend to or rescue their beloved animals for more than five days, leaving animals to become dehydrated and starving.
Please urge Mayor Giuliani to set up a task force to locate and rescue animals in need. To many of this disaster’s victims and their families, these beloved animals are members of the family and would be a great source of comfort.
It then gave both the phone and fax numbers to Giuliani’s office adding, “If you have a difficult time getting through to Mayor Giuliani due to phone line trouble, please don’t give up; keep trying.” Yeah, they might actually be on the phone trying to arrange to find survivors — clearly PETA’s priorities were far more important than that.
Given the situation on the ground in New York City, such a telephone campaign had the real possibility of endangering human life and has to be one of the more sickening efforts to ever emerge from that sick organization.
Meanwhile, Gary Yourofsky actually tried to top PETA in the level of absurdity. Many Americans have opened their hearts and wallets during this crisis and donated in excess of $100 million to the Red Cross (Amazon.Com alone collected $6.4 million in donations for the Red Cross within a week). Many people also sought to donate blood, in many places quickly overwhelming the ability of volunteers to keep up.
Is this an example of the best of America? According to Yourofsky, people who donate to the Red Cross are simply perpetuating terrorism. In a press release Yourofsky wrote,
Sorry I didn’t post this last week, but The American Red Cross engages in the terroristic, murderous and unscientific practice of vivisection.
It is my personal belief, too, that the Red Cross is making out like bandits over the recent tragedy. You can bet the upper management Red Cross people will be receiving HUGE bonuses after the public sends in tens of millions if not hundreds of millions of dollars because of the WTC/Pentagon attacks.
DO NOT SUPPORT the RED CROSS in any way until it refuses to torture, terrorize and murder animals in unscientific and unethical experiments.
There are other ways to donate blood besides via the Red Cross. Local hospitals or county clinics can take blood donations, too. Be careful about hospitals, though. Many of those institutions engage in vivisection, too. County clinics are your safest bet.
Yourofsky is right about one thing. The Red Cross does participate in some medical research involving animals, and thanks to animal research many of those who likely would have died of their injuries were saved thanks to the incredible advances in drugs, surgical practices, medical devices and other innovations.
Just one more thing to thank them for.
Red Cross experiments on animals – DO NOT DONATE. Gary Yourofsky, ADAPTT Press Release, September 19, 2001.
New York City’s Animals Desperately Need Your Voice. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, Press Release, September 12, 2001.