PETA promised me "10 Reasons Why [I] Should Go Naked for PETA"

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

…and all I got was this stupid email.

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Gazing at her laptop, loldog is not amused. The caption on this deMotivational poster reads, “EMAIL: Taking all the fun out of attacking a real live mailman.” Image via I Has A Hot Dog! (FWIW, I was tempted to use a PETA-themed deMotivational poster, but couldn’t stomach the sexism and speciesism. They are, however, a good example of what PETA’s nude campaigns really accomplish, particularly among the male demographic advertisers so covet.)
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———- Forwarded message ———-
From: PETA UK
Date: Wed, May 19, 2010 at 5:36 AM
Subject: 10 Reasons Why You Should Go Naked for PETA

Dear Friend,

PETA US launched its “Rather Go Naked Than Wear Fur” campaign with the help of the popular rock band The Go-Go’s in 1991 in order to raise awareness of the millions of animals who are trapped, drowned, beaten and electrocuted for their fur. Since then, thousands of compassionate people have bared their bodies for PETA and its affiliates all over the world to help animals in need.

Now you can speak up for animals by participating in PETA campaigns in your area. Just send us an e-mail and attach your photo and contact details for a chance to take part and help save animals!

Animals always need more lovely ladies and gorgeous guys who can draw attention to our campaigns by dressing up as Lettuce Ladies, Broccoli Boys and Shower Guys/Girls and handing out vegetarian food at public events; by participating in our iconic protests; or by taking part in the many other eyebrow-and consciousness-raising events that we coordinate in order to promote animal rights!

Have a Flickr account? Check out some of the people who have volunteered for PETA’s and PETA’s affiliates’ demonstrations!

Ready to get started? Join the likes of Pamela Anderson, Alicia Silverstone and countless others by e-mailing us today and sending us a photo of yourself with your details. We’ll contact you the next time we need someone in your area to bare some skin to help save animals’ skins.

Please be sure to read our terms of submission before sending us your photo.

Sincerely,

PETA

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[All emphases and links are PETA’s.]

A few initial thoughts:

(More below the fold…)

PETA Doubles Down On the Misogyny

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

PETA (Canadian Bacon)

Woman and pig: PETA says that neither of us is meat.
So kindly stop treating us ladies that way, mkay PETA?
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Okay, in all truth, the following ranks fairly low on the Misogo-meter, particularly where PETA’s concerned. But – catchy title, etc. Surely you understand.

Anyhow, in reporting on the reaction to KFC’s newest “culinary” creation – the Double Down, i.e., a couple of slabs each of bacon and cheese, crammed between two pieces of fried chicken(s), and slathered in “The Colonel’s Sauce” – in the Twitterverse, PETA singled out two celebritweets.

First up, Asher Roth, who writes: “Well, at least were making strides towards food quality and portion control – bravo colonel”

All fine and good, yes? Nothing jaw-droppingly witty, but Asher Roth (um, who?) seems to capture the popular consensus re: a “sandwich” made entirely of animal products and containing a reported 32 grams of fat and 1380 mg of sodium. Namely: yuck! and wtf!.

Next, PETA offers up a screenshot of Bow Wow’s KFC themed tweet: “I don’t know what’s more hideous, a girl with a hard fake booty with dimples in it or KFC’s new doubled down chicken sandwich.”

Hyperbole aside (e.g., clearly an unattractive ass is not nearly as hideous as are the corpses of several animals, lathered in the secretions of many others, all cobbled together to form a gluttonous, heart attack-inducing foodstuff), I hope I don’t need 140 characters to explain to you what’s wrong with this quip. Mocking a woman’s physical appearance? Not cool. (48, bitches! 68 if you factor in a bit.ly link!)

(More below the fold…)

Ask not "Are Animal Lovers Sexist?," but "Can Animal Lovers Be Sexist?" (Answer: duh.)

Sunday, March 21st, 2010

lol kaylee - just needs a hammer

Don’t fear, Ms. Kaylee is here! lol dog sez, “wonder beyatch – be hear 2 smash ur kyriarchy, mkay?” She brought her Wonder Woman undies, but she’ll need to borrow a hammer. You got a problem with that, human?
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Last November, I penned a brief letter to the editors of VegNews, in which I questioned Rory Freedman’s casual use of the term “fur hag” – “hag” being a sexist, ageist and lookist slur. (VegNews subscribers can read the exact quote in context in Freedman’s column, “Prison or Bust,” which appeared in the December 2009 issue.) Fast-forward several months; my letter was published, albeit with several edits, in the March+April 2010 issue.

Not surprisingly – given the popularity of the term, as well as PETA’s “fur hag” campaigns – some readers disagreed with my comments, including Annie Hartnett of change.org’s newly-rebranded Animals blog. (Many thanks to Marji of Animal Place for bringing the post to my attention!) In Are Animal Lovers Sexist?, Hartnett argues that, ahem, attacking women for their femaleness is not sexist because most fur-wearers are women.

While I have previously deconstructed the term “fur hag” – as well as the campaigns’ associated imagery – what follows is a line-by-line response to Hartnett’s piece. Rather than rehash points that I’ve made elsewhere, however, I’ll use this as an opportunity to build upon my previous argument. If you haven’t already, please go read last January’s On “fur hags” and “fucking bitches.” before continuing on; doubly so if you’re surfing on over here from change.org. (Also related, and referenced in passing below: ARA PSAs: Women, Men and Fur and ARA PSAs: Attack of the Killer Cosmetics.) (1)

Before we begin, though, I’d like to reprint my letter, as Hartnett did not/would not do so, even upon request.

Here is the original letter, in its entirety:

As a vegan feminist, I’m increasingly disturbed by the number of animal advocates who are willing to engage in sexism (and other “isms”) in the course of their advocacy – “for the animals,” of course (as if women are not sentient beings as well). Take, for example, Rory Freedman’s use of the term “fur hag” to describe those who wear fur (“Prison or Bust,” December 2009 issue). “Hag” – a gendered slur that is synonymous with “witch” – literally means “an ugly old woman.” While fur-wearers may indeed be ugly on the inside, a person’s gender, age and physical appearance say nothing of her character. If Ms. Freedman – or any other animal advocate – feels the need to resort to insults, please keep them “ism”-free. “Jerk,” “loser,” “asshat”: all convey a point – without further marginalizing already-marginalized groups of animals, human or non.

Kelly Garbato
Kearney, MO 64060

kelly.garbato [at] gmail.com
http://www.easyvegan.info

By the way, I wrote a lengthy piece on the term “fur hag” last year, wherein I expound upon the sexist, ageist and sizeist nature of the phrase in much greater detail than is possible in 250 words or less. Additionally, I employ PETA’s associated “fur hag” campaign imagery to further illustrate my point. You can read the post in its entirety at http://bit.ly/vl8sB

Seriously, tho’, enough with the misogyny!

(More below the fold…)

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.”

(More below the fold…)