PETA’s Response to Complaint Re: Pro-Exploitation of Women Models for Super Bowl 2009 Banned Ad
We agree that our ad is risqué, but we maintain that it is no more provocative than the other ads promoting unhealthy products, like beer and fast-food burgers, that are frequently shown during regular primetime television and on Super Bowl Sunday. Since our ad was rejected by NBC, you won’t be seeing it during the game broadcast, but you can see it at http://www.PETA.org/content/standalone/VeggieLove/Default.aspx.
We often do “sexy” or “shocking” things to get the word out about animal abuse, because sadly, the media usually do not consider the facts alone worth covering. Our purpose is to stop animal suffering, and we use all available opportunities to reach millions of people with powerful messages. The situation is critical for billions of animals who are suffering on factory farms and in slaughterhouses, and our goal is to make the public think about the issues. Sometimes this requires tactics—like naked marches and colorful ad campaigns—that some people find outrageous or even “rude,” but part of our job is to initiate discussion, debate, questioning of the status quo, and of course, action.
We have found—and your message confirms—that people do pay more attention to our racier actions. As a result of our ad, PETA representatives have appeared on cable television talk shows with audiences numbering into the millions. This means that people across America are hearing about how animals suffer on factory farms, and judging by the spike in visits to our Web sites after we publicized our ad, this tactic is working—and more people than ever before are learning and thinking about going vegetarian.
As an organization staffed largely by feminist women, we would not do something that we felt exacerbated the very serious problems that women face. Our female—and male—demonstrators and models choose to participate in our actions because they want to do something to make people stop and pay attention. We believe that people should have the choice to use their own bodies to make social statements—a tactic with a long history of success.
Medical evidence indicates that meat and dairy products can lead to impotence because they clog the arteries that go to all organs, not just the heart. Consuming meat and dairy products is also linked to numerous other health problems, including heart disease, cancer, and strokes. Doctors and nutritionists will tell you that the best way to prevent artery blockage and other conditions that cause impotence is to avoid meat and dairy products and to eat a diet high in fiber, including plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains—in other words, a healthy vegetarian diet. To learn more about the link between eating meat and impotence, please visit http://www.GoVeg.com/impotence.asp.
For more thoughts on our ad, please go to http://blog.PETA.org/archives/2009/01/veggie_love.php. To learn more about going vegetarian, to order a “Vegetarian Starter Kit,” or to browse meat-free recipes for Super Bowl Sunday and every day, visit http://www.GoVeg.com.
Carrie Edwards CarrieE@petaf.org