With the announcement that mad cow disease had found its way to cattle in Alberta, you knew it would not take long for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals to show up there as well.
Bruce Friedrich visited Alberta to protest outside an Edmonton grocery story. He and other activists carried signs reading, “It’s Mad to Eat Meat — Go Vegetarian.”
In an interview with the CanWest News Service, Friedrich said,
When industries deny animals everything natural to them and turn them into machines, it can come back to haunt us. . . . If you eat meat, you already have to worry about salmonella, E. coli, campylobacter, heart disease, strokes, high blood pressure and cancer, as well as your weight. Now you can add mad cow disease to the list.
Oddly enough, Valerie Fitch of the Calgary Vegetarian Society seemed a bit suspicious as to whether or not fear over mad cow disease would lead Canadians to go vegetarian,
I think that initially meat consumption will drop. It may come up again, but people will be questioning what they eat.
Given how isolated the first case of mad cow disease among cattle in Canada was, I doubt there will be a significant drop in meat consumption there. Now if a human case of vCJD is found, that would be a different story.
‘It’s mad to eat meat’, PETA to tell shoppers: Animal rights group pushes vegetarianism. CanWest Global Communications Corp., Mario Toneguzzi, May 22, 2003.