Saturday, June 20, 2009

PETA stands up for insect rights

From one of my twitter buddies comes this story on Chicagoist about PETA's response to President Obama being captured on video swatting a fly. On their blog is this nugget...

In a nutshell, our position is this: He isn't the Buddha, he's a human being, and human beings have a long way to go before they think before they act.

...check out our handy-dandy bug catcher—one of which we are sending to President Obama for future insect incidents.

My first reaction was, quite simply, stunned disbelief. Really? REALLY??? But then I thought about it for a few minutes and that reaction changed to bwaahahhahahahahahha!! You guys got me good on that one! I clicked on the link to their humane bug catcher, expecting to see the punch line. Umm. Not so much. It looks real. You can order one.

Then PETA posted a followup which pretty much regurgitates the same position as the first post. The reality was dawning on me. They are serious. Dead serious. Actually, make that no-kill serious.

I have to say, I don't care how strongly anyone feels about their mission, could anyone ever take them seriously again after this? I am a lover of animals, but are you guys out of your minds?

Let us think about this for a minute. PETA has taken an offical position on the killing of flies: in a perfect world, it is not acceptable. Let's see what's wrong with this position. Flies spread disease. Flies destroy crops. Flies are routinely eaten alive by birds, which I would venture is a far less humane death than being swatted. Umm, they're fucking flies!

Let's look at this from another perspective. If flies should be protected, then what rationale is there for not protecting any other living thing? Antibiotics? Bacteria killers! You bastard doctors! Showering? You better strike that from your list of things to do. It would be a bacteria and hair mite genocide! Live and let live right?

Even walking through the lawn is rife with risks to earthworms, ants, and any number of other creatures who might be harmed due to your callous indifference to the wellbeing of your animal friends.

And forget about water treatment. I can only imagine how many billions of organisms are put to death in the interest of selfish, safe drinking water. But one day, I suppose, we can come around to the compassionate position that our own needs should not be at the expense of another life, no matter how tiny. After all, a bug bite might just give you some stupid little rash or disease. But it's the life of a bug we're talking about, and that is more important than any minor inconvenience or pain or suffering that a human might suffer. So go ahead, let those mosquitos feed!! Cuz once it's landed on your arm, you don't have a lot of choices other than killing it or getting bitten. A few welts is a small price to pay for letting that mosquito live out it's 4-day lifespan in peace and harmony with the world. Never mind that it doesn't give a crap about you.

Okay, I think you get the point. I am hoping that this is really one big joke that's they're taking too far. But it's not April 1st and it sure doesn't seem like one.



Titania said...

No-kill to PETA. Those guys are insane, I and I thought *I* was the crazy animal lady.

Death to mosquitoes too, in particular the vicious tiger ones that attack me all day long here in Tk Pk.

lacochran said...

There are monks that gently sweep the path in front of them with a broom before they step for the express purpose of not accidentally killing a bug.

If it's me or the mosquito, the mosquito is going down!

Titania said...

PETA is crazy and this whole fly incident is off the charts, not to mention that they hurt they own image by this campaign. However, we see too much on the other side too, like the authorities in NY killing 2,000 canadian geese - have one problem with wildlife and solve it by exterminating it? seriously?

Erik said...

I agree that PETA is completely insane. No one in their right mind could believe that flies and other insect vermin are sentinent, feeling beings. Mosquitoes transmit malaria, which is the #4 killer of children under 5 in poor countries, according to the World Health Organization. Other insect borne diseases are malaria, yellow fever, typhus, and the plague. I think some of these PETA pinheads ought to volunteer to visit a malaria infested swamp and feed the mosquitoes! BTW- A squirt bottle filled with rubbing alcohol makes an excellent bug killer, especially for flies!

Anonymous said...

Actually, I agree with PETA on this one, assuming that they actually did say "In a perfect world." In a perfect world, we wouldn't have to kill anything. But, obviously, this isn't a perfect world. Some bugs are health and safety hazards. Others, like carpenter ants, can destroy our homes. As you point out, still others can destroy crops. I think in these cases, we have a legitimate self-defense claim against the insects, as we do in cases where bacteria and microscopic organisms (or macroscopic ones, for that matter) pose similar problems. I also think we shouldn't beat ourselves up too much if we accidentally kill a few insects along the way, since doing so is basically unavoidable. But I also think we shouldn't go out of our way to kill bugs merely because we think they're ugly or annoying; frequently, I believe, we're just applying ignorance and unfair prejudices to basically harmless creatures. Also, in cases where we can truly solve our insect problems without killing the bugs and without going to too great a personal expense, we should do it. That they don't care about us is not an excuse for us to not consider their interests (I say "interests" because there is a possibility of some low-level consciousness; a recent Cornell study found that some insects are capable of learning and other possibly "intelligent" behavior)--don't we pride ourselves, after all, on being the most intellectual and moral, rational beings on the planet? I'd say that label comes with a price.

Anonymous said...

I care for everything, and am aware that this world is basically a version of hell, and I feel enough pain has it is.
Yet I do my best not to harm, eventually all your talks of "horrible insects" are incredibly stupid since humans are pretty much the REAL parasite on this planet.
Whatever sickeness you can think of and whatever "damages" insects can do, they are nothing compared to the daily damage humans do to EVERYTHING around them!
Also... Most insects are actually 100 times more important then humans- bees for example.
Don't talk about crops being eaten, since humans kinda stole those lands from all the other animals, so humans don't deserve to whine over something ells coming to eat.
I care for everything, and I do my best to avoid has much as damage as possible, since our world is horrible, all we can do is try to make it better, if all of you go saying "Humans are the best", then why not start acting the best instead of always trying to find excuses to allow yourselves to be the worse?