So, on Saturday the 11th of April, PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) held an awareness gathering in World of Warcraft where they killed four quest NPC's as a form of protest for the unethical killing of seals in real life. Some how it got into their heads that by focusing on protecting the digital seals in a game and instead performing the far more ethical act of killing the would-be digital seal killers, it would bring awareness to the unethical killing of real world seals.
So.. let me sum up for those who can't put this together -- what they are saying is.. Kill the people who are killing the seals.
Are you fucking kidding me?! How is that more ethical? They honestly are saying that it's more ethical to kill humans than it is to kill seals? That's their stance? Really?
I've always heard PETA was a bunch of psycho douche bags but damn.. But to their point; Apparently a lot of seals (between 100k and 400k this year depending on which website you go to..) are killed annually by the Canadian government.. Or rather, their killing is sanctioned by the Canadian government..
PETA's website goes on a very graphic tirade about how awful it is and how each seal "must look on as fellow pups are bludgeoned to death before meeting the same bloody fate. The anguish that a mother seal feels as she watches her baby being beaten to death just a few feet away from her is horrifying and can be heard in her desperate cries..." Wow.. Nice spin.. Complete bullshit, but a good spin all the same..
In doing research for this, I have watched a lot of videos.. And in each video I have seen it has had some lone guy run up on an individual seemingly adult seal that was alone on an ice flow and repeatedly whack the seal in the head with a hammer on a pole.. Kinda gruesome true.. But PETA paints this as mass murder where all the baby seals are gathered up and executed Auschwitz style.. That simply isn't true..
Firstly, I have no idea why the Canadian government has an annual seal season. And from what I have read, no one else knows either.. There must be a reason, and despite what PETA thinks its not because they are all evil evil communists who hate children.. Thats how PETA paints it, but again.. not true.. That's propaganda.. There must be a reason it's legal -- what is it?
Apparently I'm willing to look at it a bit more objectively than PETA is; It could be just like the deer season here in the US.. I simply don't know. All the websites I have found on the issue are one manner of propaganda or another.. Finding hard facts is near impossible at this point because of all the inflammatory crap being flung back and forth..
The simple truth of it is; If it's legal, then it's legal. You can be offended by it, but that doesn't mean that its against the law. You can delve all you want into the morality pool and every one of us will come up with a different opinion on the subject.. But from a legal stand point, you can't say that killing seals is illegal. It's not illegal.
I personally think the primary difference is that seals are endearing.. It's sort of the same difference between a rat and a squirrel.. Squirrels are cute, we love them! Rats are ugly, we hate them! When the simple fact is they are both rodents that carry diseases, only one has a fluffy tail and lives outside which people find endearing thus squirrels are thought of more positively.. Seals are cute and as such we are offended by their early demise..
I'm more than willing to concede that there are baby seals being killed out there on the ice flows.. Probably more than a few.. but to say that all the seals being killed are just cute cuddly wuddly baby seals is pure propaganda plain and simple. Most folks that look at a picture of a seal have no idea how old that seal is.. Hell they all look like babies right? I'm not 100% sure, but I thought seals out on the ice flow alone (as in the videos I saw) are adults, no baby seal would go out that far alone..
Here is one of the videos I saw of seals being clubbed to death, and yes -- it's pretty gruesome. But I would say it's no more gruesome than a deer getting shot during the annual hunting seasons here in the US.. How is that different? It's an animal being killed by a superior species.. Just like a lion that chases down and kills a gazelle for it's meat..
I eat meat.. The steak, pork and chicken that I consume also was once alive.. and is now dead.. And according to PETA I'm a murderer for it? Really? It's been going on for a long time.. And my maxillary permanent canine teeth sort of imply it was meant to go on.. So why does PETA think that this sort of activity is so bad?
They would answer that a lion wouldn't kill for sport, or wouldn't kill for just the skin. To which I say; Sure they would and do all the time. Dolphins are one of the more intelligent animals on the planet and they kill for sport..
Frankly, this is just propaganda by an organization that has no power.. You see, PETA wants to bring your attention to what they call, an injustice.. Something they call unethical..
And since PETA has the word "Ethical" right in their name they must be good right? The words right there, therefore they must be the ones doing the ethical and moral thing.. So if you disagree with them, then you're unethical!! You bastard.
The problem is, it doesn't work that way. Ethics are a system of moral principles governing an individual or group. Those principles are discussed and agreed upon by that group. No one individual or group can decide what those principles are for another individual or group. Meaning, what's ethical here.. may not apply there. What's moral and ethical for you may not apply to me..
In this situation you have PETA trying to tell another group what's ethically right, and if you don't do what they think is right you're wrong. PETA is trying to control you and your way of thinking.. And they think you should DIE for disagreeing. That's right.. Remember from above, they think the people killing the seals, should be killed...
Frankly, I find that PETA is nothing more than a terrorist group (or even religious cult) that is extremely vocal and is very good at crafting sensational, vivid, graphic and even horrific language and imagery in order to manipulate people. They do it in such a way as to make you feel bad if you don't side with them, and if that doesn't work they will intimidate, harass and threaten you..
That alone to me seems unethical.
The issue here is, like so many other animals in the animal kingdom (and yes, WE are animals) we tend to think animals are good to eat.. Most PETA members are vegetarians and as such have a moral stance that killing an animal of any kind for any reason is wrong. Oh and they'll tell ya about it too.. We have differing ethical stances when it comes to the killing of animals.
I'm all for not killing critters if we can get around it.. but sometimes it's necessary.. Like for food or for other products that we deem necessary.. Where as PETA paints this picture that we are torturing animals for our food.. Or that these seals are being tortured to death for their fur. I haven't seen that. I have yet to see where they hook up the car battery to the seals teets just to cause pain. Or where they derive some sick pleasure from slapping a seal around..
In every video I have seen, they kill the animal in very short order.. It may take two or three whacks but its over and done fairly quickly.. How is that torture? Torture to me implies the repeated infliction of pain over a period of time from which you derive some sick sadistic pleasure.. Walking up to an animal and bludgeoning it to death with intent to use it for one purpose or another, isn't torture..
I have seen horrific and evil video of animals being tortured.. (Just watch the PETA website..) Yeah that shits awful.. But that stuff is illegal and there are laws in place to stop it. The seal hunts are legal, and not in the same category despite what you think.
Look, I love animals.. I do.. I always have.. And I think the torture of animals is wrong and the people doing it should go away for ever.. But it's pretty clear to me that PETA loves animals more than Humans..
PETA will try to tell you that animals are todays "slaves" and that what happens to a cow or a chicken today is morally identical to what happened to the Jewish people in the holocaust.. And that shit is fucking offensive as hell.. And I'm not Jewish!! To actually trivialize the holocaust like that is just unimaginable and goes a very long way to prove that anyone who belongs to PETA has no basis in reality.
Hrmm.. maybe they belong in a game?