"The truth will set you free. But first, it will piss you off."

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009

Hat tip to Ryan at the Veg Blog for this retro ’50s style educational film/PSA, produced by COK and currently airing on MTV:

The post title comes from a commenter on You Tube; happily, the comments thread is decidedly positive as of this writing.

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On "fur hags" and "fucking bitches."

Sunday, January 25th, 2009

PETA - PETA2 (Fur Hag Tear Sheet)

Of all PETA’s campaigns, I think I find the “fur hag” meme most offensive. While feminists can (and do) disagree on whether nudity and porn can ever be empowering for women, “fur hag” is a rather obvious gender-based slur, and draws upon a number of age-old stereotypes about women – which PETA further elucidates with their “fur hag” artwork.

To be fair, I have no idea whether PETA actually invented the term “fur hag” – but they’ve certainly been quite influential in launching “fur hag” into the mainstream. Wherever fur-wearing celebs are trashed – on gossip blogs, in fashion show protests, or even on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, “fur hag” is inevitably bandied about as an insult. Oftentimes by other women, who apparently see nothing sexist about denigrating women they dislike with misogynist slurs.

Let’s start by looking at the word “hag.”

Dictionary.com defines “hag” as:

1. an ugly old woman, esp. a vicious or malicious one.
2. a witch or sorceress.
3. a hagfish.

The first definition is obviously problematic: a hag is “an ugly old woman, esp. a vicious or malicious one.” While I have no qualms about calling people (women and men) who wear fur “vicious” or “malicious,” the term “hag” also attacks the fur wearer’s physical appearance and gender – a “hag” is “an ugly old woman.” In fact, the primary aspect of this definition involves appearance and gender – a “hag” is “an ugly old woman,” especially [but not necessarily] “a vicious or malicious one.” “Vicious” and “malicious” are somewhat extraneous to this definition; a “hag,” then, is chiefly “an ugly old woman.”

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Bashing Bush like it’s going out of style.

Sunday, January 18th, 2009

I had planned on blogging an animal rights advertisement tonight, but…meh. I got all distracted by this shiny little counter from CREDO Action, which I’ll soon be able to remove from my sidebar:

we can has new prez now?

we can has new prez now? o plz says yes!

So, in honor of dubya’s last day in office, here’s a retrospective of some of my favorite print ads featuring the decider himself. As it turns out, Bush II is “good” for selling everything from blenders to climate change awareness. (And, after eight very long years, a few hearty teehees, too.) I’ve blogged a few of the animal-friendly ads here in the past, but most are “new,” as in, new to the blog.

And if the ads don’t make you cry-laugh tears of joy, the music video sure will.

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ARA PSAs: Attack of the Killer Cosmetics

Monday, January 5th, 2009

I love this series of anti-vivisection ads from the Australian animal rights organization Animal Liberation:

Animal Liberation - Lipstick

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And round and round we go.

Wednesday, December 17th, 2008

PETA - PETA2 (Khloe Kardashian)

Just for the record: I’m not particularly fond of the latest PETA2 ad featuring Khloe Kardashian. However, it’s not Kardashian’s state of (un)dress that bothers, rather, it’s the way in which PETA’s photographers have posed her that irks my feminist sensibilities. Though not as bad as, say, the Suicide Girls series, Ms. Kardashian is somewhat pornified in this ad: here, her body is turned away from the camera, so that it appears that the audience is following, ogling, stalking, sneaking up on her from behind. (From a racial perspective, I also find it interesting that PETA chooses to depict one of their few women of color models with a teased, “wild” hairstyle; while I know little about Khloe Kardashian, it doesn’t appear as though she normally wears her hair this way.)

Now, if this were just one of a handful of PETA ads that resemble a Playboy layout, I’d dismiss it as inevitable; PETA recruits a number of celebs to pose for their print ads, and no doubt some of these women (and men) will prefer more sexualized poses (in our pornified society, after all, women do trade on such images in order to get ahead; and I’d much rather criticize the culture which makes such compromises necessary, as opposed to the women doing the compromising). Yet, the ad fits a larger pattern wherein

women are more likely to pose in the nude than men; and, if you were to objectively compare the PETA print campaigns which feature nude men and women, you’d see that the portrayals are drastically different. Strip away PETA’s logo and slogans, and the women’s photos look like they were pulled straight out of a recent edition of Playboy. Young, white, thin, feminine, (conventionally) attractive women are displayed on all fours, backs arched, gazes vacant, faces and torsos turned away from the camera, submissive in posture, ready for a good fuckin’. In contrast, the men’s shots are fun, funny, inspiring, humorous, and full of personality.

So yes, I do think there’s more than enough room for a feminist critique of PETA’s ads, print and otherwise. That said, I don’t at all trust feminists who objectify non-human animals (by eating, wearing, gawking at, or otherwise exploiting them) to offer an unbiased critique of an animal advocacy group’s objectification of women. Assuming that PETA is indeed sexist*, speciesist feminists are no better: both objectify a group of living, sentient beings based solely on group membership.

Furthermore, these women have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo vis-à-vis their relation to (i.e., domination of) non-human animals: if they were to accept PETA’s premise that non-human animals have rights and interests equal to those of human animals, they’d have to reconsider their meat-eating, leather-wearing, dog-buying ways. In short, they would have to acknowledge (and thus, renounce) their human privilege.

So, how do the women at Feministing (et al.) claim moral superiority, again? While they may sometimes be correct in their interpretation of PETA’s campaigns, this veg*n feminist finds them no more trustworthy than an openly, unabashedly racist white feminist criticizing civil rights leaders for their misogyny. While their conclusions may be correct, their reasoning and motivations are forever suspect.

Just as they insist that PETA needs to lose the sexism before feminists will take them seriously, they need to lose the speciesism before they can expect veg*n women to give a damn about what they have to say.

* Which is a gross generalization, considering PETA’s vast membership numbers; better still to say that president Ingrid Newkirk and/or other higher-ups is/are sexist, and the organization is sexist to the extent that Newkirk/those in charge influences their hiring and PR policies.

(Crossposted from.)



ARA PSA of the Day: Let Meat Live!

Friday, November 7th, 2008

OK, so these ads for The Coup Vegetarian Restaurant aren’t technically public service announcements, but I get a kick out of ’em nonetheless. Plus, even though they’re meant to market a business, they do so by promoting vegetarianism and a compassionate diet. “Let Meat Live!,” indeed.

The Coup Vegetarian Restaurant - Sheep

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Dear Ms. Newkirk,

Saturday, October 18th, 2008

A “real” feminist wouldn’t employ such a silly argument in defense of PETA’s campaigns, whether sexist or not:

MJ: One question I did have. I really do appreciate the work PETA has done but it has gotten a lot of criticism for using women in some of its ads. A lot of times in bikinis, or scantily clad, I think there was a striptease campaign that came online recently. What do you say to people who criticize PETA and say that it’s not women-friendly, that it denigrates women?

IN: Well, it’s rubbish because the organization is run by a woman, who is me. I marched in the earliest of rallies, I am an adamant feminist, but I’m not a prude and I think you can go to the beach and see people who are in less than you can in a PETA ad.

Let me guess: you also have a Black Friend ™, such that none of PETA’s campaigns could possibly be racist, either?

Seriously, this is such a ridiculous argument that I need only two words to refute it: Ann Coulter. Women are not immune from misogyny, you see. Sometimes, they’re even more vicious in their hatred of other women than are their male peers; because of the common (mis)perception that “women cannot be sexist,” women are oftentimes granted license to act in an even more misogynistic manner than their male counterparts. It’s not often that you hear a man argue that women’s suffrage was a mistake – yet Ann Coulter has posited as much, and she still manages to get speaking gigs.

You go on to say:

Our people are all volunteers, no one has asked a woman to take off her clothes. I’ve done it myself, we’ve all marched naked if we want to, and I think that it’s very restrictive and in fact wrong. I would expect someone in, say, Iran to tell us that we should cover up, but I don’t expect women or men in this country to criticize women who wish to use their bodies in a form of political statement, to tell them, you need to cover yourself up. There’s this idea of ‘naughty bits’ and I just think it’s funny more than anything else. It’s not sexist, it may be sexual, but no. No woman has ever been paid to strip. She has decided to use her body as a political instrument. That’s her prerogative and I think it is anti-feminist to dare to tell her that she needs to put her clothes back on.

Certainly, I agree that it’s “anti-feminist to dare to tell [a woman] that she needs to put her clothes back on”; however, there’s a difference between allowing your supporters to use their naked bodies as “political instrument[s]” and taking advantage of your [female] supporters’ willingness to get naked for the animals by playing into cultural stereotypes regarding gender roles, beauty, sex, class, race, etc. As I noted in my defense of your “Breast is Best” campaign, PETA does have a despicable habit of pornifying women in their photo/print campaigns while simultaneously portraying men as full human beings, complete with agency and personalities.

In PETA’s world, women are more likely to pose in the nude than men; and, if you were to objectively compare the PETA print campaigns which feature nude men and women, you’d see that the portrayals are drastically different. Strip away PETA’s logo and slogans, and the women’s photos look like they were pulled straight out of a recent edition of Playboy. Young, white, thin, feminine, (conventionally) attractive women are displayed on all fours, backs arched, gazes vacant, faces and torsos turned away from the camera, submissive in posture, ready for a good fuckin’. In contrast, the men’s shots are fun, funny, inspiring, humorous, and full of personality.

Yes, you can be sexual without being sexist; just look at these campaigns featuring naked men as proof:

PETA (Steve O 1)

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Papi says, "Don’t breed or buy while rescue Chihuahuas die."

Saturday, October 4th, 2008

Seriously. He’s one of those high-falutin’ talking Hollywood Chihuahuas. And he’s a rescue dog, to boot. Kind of blows that “shelter dogs are broken dogs” myth of of the water, no?

Via Best Friends, who notes:

We all know what happens when a new “dog movie” comes out—lots of people decide they must have a dog just like the one in the movie. But what people might not realize is that shelters and groups across the country have plenty of Chihuahuas, for ADOPTION. In fact, Chihuahuas are the 5th most-posted breed of dog for adoption on Petfinder (after Labs, Shepherds, Pit bulls and mixes of those breeds).

Check out our star-studded PSA video (with actors from the movie) that encourages adoption instead of buying.

Watch on the Best Friends website (higher quality)

Watch on YouTube

We wanted to share a poster made by Best Friends that can be easily printed and hung up around your town to let people know that they can rescue a Chihuahua on Petfinder instead of buying one from a pet store, newspaper ad or the Internet. In fact, the star Chihuahua of the movie was rescued from a Moreno Valley shelter, outside of L.A. just days before his “time was up.”

Download poster by clicking this link.

For more information visit our web page: http://www.dontbuypuppies.com

Feel free to use link to the video on your own websites.

On behalf of the ‘Puppies Aren’t Products’ Campaign Team, thank you for helping us spread word!

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Whose Skin Are You In?

Sunday, September 28th, 2008

This video has been making the rounds, but I thought I might post it here anyhow, as an example of a PETA ad campaign that I quite like. It’s brutal, truthful, powerful and moving. It addresses the animal, human and environmental casualties of leather and fur “production.” It does so without pornifying women or men, without relying on ageist or sizeist slurs, and does not single out a particular culture for their use of animal skins. It calls out speciesism without engaging in another “ism” while doing so. It’s evidence that PETA, with all its faults, is a varied organization that can (sometimes!) produce engaging campaigns. After all, a little props when they do get it right would be nice, no? Positive reinforcement, yes?

And yet…I have yet to see “Whose Skin Are You In?” featured on a non-veg*n blog as of this writing. Just, you know, making a note. *shrug*

You can sign the fur-free pledge and order “Fake for the Animals’ Sake” stickers here.

(Crossposted from.)



Pork & Tits

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

Update, 10/17/07: OK, I lied. What can I say, I don’t enjoy being misrepresented.

By way of an FYI to Feministing readers, I don’t plan on following the comment thread over there, not because I’m a rude asshole, but because I don’t need the grief.


Update, 10/16/08: First, greetings and salutations to everyone coming here from Feministing. I hope you’ll have a look around and perhaps visit again.

Secondly, I want to briefly address the way in which Ann linked to this post on her recent piece on Ingrid Newkirk. At first I intended on posting this in the comments at Ann’s post, but they require a MoveableType account, and I just don’t have the energy – to register *or* follow comments on a website I’ve longed stopped reading due (some of) the bloggers’ blatant speciesism.

This is the paragraph in which I was quoted:

Well, duh. The lowest-common-denominator advertising tactic is to put a big ol’ pair of disembodied boobs front and center. We get that. (Of course, this argument has been made in defense of PETA’s tactics before.) But to make it sound like, “well, it’s either boobs or a slaughterhouse video, and which do you think traffics better?” is so simplistic. There are a million ways to draw attention to a cause that are neither in-your-face political nor objectifying women. This is not either/or.

I don’t know if Ann misinterpreted my post, or if I’m reading too much into the way in which I was referenced, but I want to clarify that I *don’t* believe that it’s ok for PETA to objectify women just so long as it helps their traffic. And that’s not at all what I said: in the post below, I argue that the “Breast is Best” campaign is not sexist, not because the ends justify the means – but because the means, in this case, simply are not misogynistic. My main intention in pointing out the Google search results is to scold those feminists (like, ahem, the ladies at Feministing) who only give a flying fuck about animal welfare issues when it’s to rip into PETA for their sexism (or other “ism”), whether real or perceived. (That discrepancy in search results? Feministing & co. is partially to blame.)

If you keep reading, you’ll see that I DO have a problem with PETA’s celebrity print campaigns, in which women’s naked bodies are pornified, while those of men are not. No doubt, all those pseudo-porn shots do wonders for PETA’s publicity, but because I believe that PETA has a responsibility to fight oppression in all its forms (if not actively, then at the very least by refusing to engage in it themselves), I don’t really give a shit how many people PETA manages to convert to veg*nism by displaying Jenna Jameson like a porno prop – it’s wrong, and it’s sexist. And I say as much in the post below.

So for Ann to suggest that I defended the “lowest-common-denominator advertising tactic…to put a big ol’ pair of disembodied boobs front and center,” is really quite unfair. The “Breast is Best” campaign – at least to the best of my knowledge – never actually displayed anyone’s boobs. If PETA has since sent out scantily clad models to greet Wal-Mart customers with a nice fresh glass of breast milk and copious amounts of cleavage, then that’s where I’d stop defending this particular campaign.

I know it’s shocking, but I can repudiate some of PETA’s campaigns while admiring others. I’m nuanced like that, yo.

Update, 10/16/08, later in the PM: I’d also like to point out that you can “use sex” to sell your message in a way that isn’t sexist. Sometimes doing so can even prove both sexy and subversive:

Kathleen Hanna of Bikini Kill, Le Tigre

Question: Do you think Ms. Hanna is objectifying herself, selling out other women by selling her own body, by appearing in a bikini top with the word “SLUT” scrawled across her stomach?

Would you think the same if she’d written “GO VEG” on her bare belly instead?

If so, you need to check your speciesism at the door.

And, you know, this is why I rarely write about PETA; it’s just too emotionally draining. I self-identify as a vegan feminist atheist. Sure, I’m many other things; but these are the three descriptors that I’ll always turn to first. So it really pains me when either of the two feel at odds with one another, such as when feminists all but ignore animal issues until PETA releases their newest campaign, which may or may not be “ist.” That was really the impetus for the post below – not defending PETA per se, but defending animal rights as a feminist issue.


Update, 10/16/08: Ann @ Feministing linked to this piece, but over at Smite Me!, where it was originally posted. In response, I clarified my position a bit, particularly the whole “sex sells” angle, which I believed she misinterpreted. Go check it out.


Update, 9/27/08: Mary Martin @ Animal Person discusses Ben & Jerry’s obtuse response to the campaign, as well as The Today Show’s take on the kerfluffle. Hint: you may want to write them about their weak attempts at “journalism.” Because, like it or not, many Americans’ sole provider of mainstream media news may very well consist of inane newstainment programs such as The Today Show.


Hey! Feminists! You want to know why PETA continues to engage in (possibly) sexist, racist, classist, sizeist and otherwise “offensive” and “controversial” campaigns?

I’ll give you a hint:

Google Search - PETA + Breast Milk

Google Search - PETA + Hormel + Pigs

In the top screenshot, a Google search for the terms PETA + “breast milk,” which returned 51,900 hits.

In the bottom screenshot, a Google search for the terms PETA + Hormel + pigs, which returned 11,500 hits.

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Everyday Activism / Truth in Advertising

Thursday, September 4th, 2008

Animals Australia - Recipe, 1

I’m been a bad, busy blogger lately, and for that I apologize. Between the DNC, the RNC, the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and the hovering hurricane Gustav (and Hannah and Ike and Josephine), and the seemingly neverending rise in police repression and brutality, I am burnt. out. So I went on a bit of a staycation last week, and took in some local sights that I’ve been wanting to for awhile (staycation photos galore!).

Anyway, I thought I’d share this awesome ad campaign from Animals Australia. The series depicts photos of “mouth-watering” (*gag*) meat dishes along with their recipes. Instead of twelve ounces of pork and a cup of red wine vinegar, however, AA’s recipes call for gestation crates and animal cruelty.

I love the juxtaposition of beautiful gourmet food photography and graphic descriptions of factory farming practices. At first glance, the layout looks as though it might be straight out of a meat-worshipping cookbook a la Anthony Bourdain. But once the reader leans in closer, wham! Truth in advertising, baby. Genius.

As an added bonus, the ads are perfect for some stealth activism. Simply print out a few (hundred?) copies and insert them in the animal-unfriendly cookbooks in your local Barnes & Noble store. Or, heck, a friend or relative’s own cookbook collection, if you want to be doubly snarky.

The rest of the series is after the jump. (Click through to each pic’s Flickr page to read the full text.)

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Personas para el Tratamiento Ético de los Animales?

Thursday, August 14th, 2008

Via Noemi @ Vegans of Color, PETA’s latest publicity stunt: pro-vegan ads on, of all places, the US-Mexico border fence:

While many view the contentious border fence as a government fiasco, an animal rights group sees a rare opportunity.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals plans today to announce an unusual marketing pitch to the U.S. government: Rent us space on the fence for billboards warning illegal border crossers there is more to fear than the Border Patrol.

The billboards, in English and Spanish, would offer the caution: “If the Border Patrol Doesn’t Get You, the Chicken and Burgers Will — Go Vegan.”

“We think that Mexicans and other immigrants should be warned if they cross into the U.S. they are putting their health at risk by leaving behind a healthier, staple diet of corn tortillas, beans, rice, fruits and vegetables,” said Lindsay Rajt, assistant manager of PETA’s vegan campaigns.

The Department of Homeland Security is working to meet a deadline to complete 670 miles of fencing and other barriers on the Southwest border by Dec. 31. The fencing operation has run into stiff opposition by landowners fighting government efforts to obtain their land through condemnation.

PETA says its billboards would picture “fit and trim” Mexicans in their own country, where their diet is more in line with the group’s mission. Another image on the sign would portray obese American children and adults “gorging on meaty, fat- and cholesterol-packed American food.”

PETA’S offer to the feds is expected to arrive in a letter to Border Patrol officials today.

But a government spokesman in Washington said the request will be rejected because it would limit visibility through the fence. And Border Patrol does not allow advertising on its property or installations, the officials added.

“The fencing being put in place is, in many cases, mesh fencing to allow our officers to see what’s happening on the other side and to better secure the border,” said Michael Friel, a spokesman for U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

One property owner on the Texas-Mexico border laughed at PETA’s proposal.

“I think it’s ridiculous,” said Noel Benavides, who is contesting the construction of a fence dividing his family’s 145-acre ranch in Roma on the Rio Grande. “I can’t see the point of something like that.”

But Rajt said the rent money they’d pay would help offset the huge costs of the fencing — and the advertising message “might even be frightening enough to deter people from crossing into the U.S.”

PETA has often been criticized for its aggressive animal rights crusades. It’s used billboards to push many of its controversial positions such as “Buck Cruelty: Say NO to horse-drawn carriage rides” or “Feeding Kids Meat Is Child Abuse.”

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Oh, when Bush bashing and animal advocating intersect! (Swoon.)

Wednesday, June 27th, 2007

Anima Pro - Bush

“A dog loves you the way you are. Adopt one.”



ARA PSAs: March of the Penguins

Monday, April 9th, 2007

Prowildlife (Penguins)

Gives new meaning to the term “animal rights terrorism”, no? Ah, if only.

Make the jump for the rest of the photos in this series.

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Scalloped Snoopy, Grilled Garfield, and Side o’ Scooby (just because…

Wednesday, February 28th, 2007

…only one lonely action alert found its way into my inbox today.)

The Philippine Animal Welfare Society (Snoopy)

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ARA PSAs: Animals Do Science, Go Clubbing

Monday, February 12th, 2007

Before I head off to bed, one of my favorite animal rights PSA campaigns. Just because.

It’s from Humans for Animals, a group I’d never heard of prior to stumbling across these ads at Ads of the World (here and here). Surprisingly, the comments over at AotW are generally positive. That’s a good sign, right?

I’m out. Sweet dreams.

Humans for Animals (Monkeys)

Humans for Animals (Seal)



"Anna Nicole Smith, dead of femininity at age 39."

Monday, February 12th, 2007

Thus far, 2007 is shaping up to be a fairly melancholic year, at least virtually. First came the passing of Zeke, beloved blog dog of the liberal/progressive corner of the internets. Last week, I was saddened to discover that Heidi, my favorite – and perhaps the most-photographed – dachshund on Flickr had died suddenly in a freak accident. I don’t think I’ve shed so many tears for other people’s companions, ever. Perhaps it’s just because my first-born is starting to get on in age, and I’m dreading the day when…gah, enough.

Anna Nicole Smith’s death…well, normally I wouldn’t pay much mind to the demise of a B-list star. And yet, I find myself mourning her death, albeit in a low-level way. Smith was something of an advocate for animals; she posed in several PETA ads, including two protesting Iams and fur. (Interestingly, the ads featuring Smith were arguably – and ironically – the more tasteful of PETA’s largely exploitative campaigns.) As an animal rights activist, the loss of a fellow activist hits hard. Yet, even my pensive mood and our shared values don’t explain why I feel such sorrow over her death.

Though she’s been (and even in death, continues to be) derided as a dumb, no-talent bimbo by the media, Smith is more deserving of sympathy than spite. Salon explains it eloquently, so rather than offer a half-assed paraphrase, allow me to quote Cintra Wilson:

Vickie Lynn Hogan of Mexia, Texas — the woman Spy magazine once called a “super-duper-model” — was ripe for the taking: She had always been compared to Marilyn Monroe, and she nursed these comparisons, right down to her own sense of victimization by a society that she perceived as having no respect for her, and to her self-fulfilling prophecy that she would die young and tragically.

Naturally, the death of her 20-year-old son didn’t help, and neither did the methadone. It was clear she lacked coping skills. Following the death of Daniel Smith, three days after Anna Nicole gave birth to a baby girl, the tabloids reported that the distraught new mother was so sedated that she needed to be reinformed of his death, again and again, every time she woke up … an excruciating ring of hell.

Even in such times of private agony, prurient interest now follows its victims everywhere. Wherever there’s a cellphone and an Internet connection, the camera can steal a soul. […]

What needs saying — what it seems nobody has yet said — is that when she was able to suppress her demons enough to pull herself together and look her best, she was fabulously gorgeous. Numerous red-carpet moments, the footage of which we now run over and over again like a televised rosary in order to understand her death, reveal this. Anna Nicole was a star because she possessed an unusually large amount of beauty. At her best, she didn’t evoke Marilyn Monroe so much as Anita Ekberg in “La Dolce Vita” — the strapless black dress, mounds of white flesh, piles of blond hair. She was indelicate, but an unstable element nonetheless — not so much a candle in the wind as a bonfire in a hailstorm. But the real similarity between Anna Nicole and Marilyn was their shimmering tension — an unsettlingly powerful physical beauty, collapsing irresistibly in real time beneath the frailties of its hostess. She was entropy porn at its finest.

Our fascinated gaze was her real addiction — and the humiliating media tractor pull between our disgust and our attraction for her was, in all likelihood, both her lover and her murderer. Fame, the only chemotherapy available for the desperate toxicity of narcissism, proves once again that it is deadly enough in its own right to be avoided.

Like all women, Smith tried her damnedest to adhere to society’s mandate that women be teh sexxy, that they be ready and willing to bend to the patriarchy at will. And then she was scorned and derided – abused – for doing so. Just as women like Hillary Clinton are criticized for being too smart, too successful, too manly, Anna Nicole Smith was castigated for her uber-submissiveness, her unabashed sexuality, her exaggerated femininity.

As Twisty opined:

If any doubts linger as to the sinister essence of the feminine directive marketed by the beauty industry, I urge you to consider the painful case of poor Anna Nicole Smith, dead of femininity at age 39.* Blonde bombshells are disturbingly disposable.

* The system that rewards a woman’s acquiescence to pornulation with fawning attention, cash, glamor, and fame can be fickle. Here is what one enlightened genius commenting on Smith’s Miami-Herald obit had to say about yet another icon destroyed by the pornsick culture he jacks off to on his computer every night: “Anna Nicole Smith — Stupid Life, Lived Stupidly, By a Stupid Person. A disaster from beginning to end.”

Too sexy or not sexy enough. Women just can’t win.

The media blitz is sickening, really; not just on accounta it mostly hates on the deceased, but because there are much more important stories out there. Those covering mocking Smith’s life and death reek of hypocrisy: they drone on about how inconsequential Smith’s life was, all the while trivializing the important events that they’re not affording adequate coverage, such as the War on Terra, the crises in Darfur and the Congo, heck, climate change, even. But 300000+ dead Iraqis does not a pornalicious scandal make, I ‘spose. Add to that the fact that those who made Smith famous are now decrying her undeserved fame, and you’ve got a pack of patriarchal media pricks.

So let’s help the press out, shall we? Take a moment to write CNN, the NY Times, your local paper, whathaveyou, and tell them how you think Anna Nicole Smith should be remembered. Not as a drugged-out bimbo, or every misogynist’s jagoff material.

Remind them that she was more than her celebrity.

Unlike more educated, esteemed, “respectable” individuals, Anna Nicole Smith worked to improve the plight of the single most disadvantaged group in our country, indeed, the world: animals. She spoke out against Iams’ torturous treatment of dogs and cats and campaigned against seal slaughter. She was more than boobs, booze, and blonde curls – she also had a big heart, in a world sorely lacking big hearts.

And that’s the Anna Nicole Smith that I’ll remember.

After the jump – a selection of Anna’s PSAs.

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DawnWatch: COK airs "A Side of Truth" on MTV — November, 2006

Monday, November 6th, 2006

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch – news [at] dawnwatch.com>
Date: Nov 5, 2006 9:31 PM
Subject: DawnWatch: COK airs “A Side of Truth” on MTV — November, 2006

DawnWatch generally encourages animal friendly media by asking subscribers to stay in touch with the media, letting them know how much we appreciate coverage of animal issues. The terrific grass-roots group Compassion Over Killing, however, also makes its own media messages, and has carefully choosing the perfect target market. The group has produced a 30-second commercial designed for MTV. They call it “A Side Of Truth.” You can watch it on line at http://www.cok.net/camp/mtv/.

As the website describes:

“In this hard-hitting ad, a young woman is ordering food from a drive thru when she is forced to face the painful and cruel reality of typical dietary choices—from the mother pig in a gestation crate who can’t turn around to the hens crammed inside wire battery cages to the calf in a veal stall who can barely move. As she speeds away in horror, viewers are directed to TryVeg.com where they can learn more about the routine miseries endured by animals on factory farms as well as order COK’s free Vegetarian Starter Guide to help them transition to an animal-friendly diet.”

(More below the fold…)

IFAW: What did you really bring back from vacation?

Tuesday, September 5th, 2006

Via the International Fund for Animal Welfare, the “Think Twice – Don’t Buy Wildlife Souvenirs” campaign.

You can sign their “Pledge Not to Buy Wildlife Souvenirs” here, or download these posters, along with other campaign materials, here.

IFAW Tourism Poster 01

IFAW Tourism Poster 02

Or – better yet – add one of their nifty banners to your website.

Who knew?

Friday, June 9th, 2006

Routinely I find myself surprised at the celebs who volunteer themselves for PETA PSAs. This one, however, really caught me off guard:


I’ll let the luchadores ‘splain:

Featuring bone-breaking masked Mexican wrestlers, or luchadores, and heartbreaking burlesque beauties, Mexican wrestling’s phenomenon, Lucha Va Voom, is unmatched when it comes to putting on a show full of glitter, glam, and body slams. Recently, this group of brawling babes and hard-hitters showed its softer side by taking time out from grappling with each other to tackle animal abuse together. In its colorful new PETA ad, the troupe tells people, “Animals Can’t Defend Themselves—Fight for Them! Join PETA.”

“[I]f we have feelings, if we have hearts, we don’t like to see anyone suffer. Much less little animals like cats and dogs,” wrestler Quinto of Los Villanos tells fans in an exclusive PETA video. “[We] only ask you to be more thoughtful in the care of those animals, because so much of their happiness depends on how we treat them, how our children treat them, how we allow others to treat them.”

You can read more about the campaign, download a larger version of the ad, and register to win tickets to Jack Black’s upcoming flick, Nacho Libre, here.