People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals
Research papers on PETA often take controvertial issues as and examine the animal rights aspects of these issues. Learn more about PETA in a custom written research paper.
As one of the most well-known and controversial animal rights groups, the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has existed for more than 35 years and has more than five million people as members of supporters. They focus on four key issues:
- Factory farming
- Fur farming
- Animal testing
- Animals in entertainment
They have also led significant campaigns against eating meat, dog fighting, cock fighting, and extermination of certain breeds because they are seen as a “nuisance,” such as pit bulls being targeted with breed-specific legislation.
The event that led to the rise of PETA as a household name came from the usage of seventeen macaque monkeys for medical testing on stroke therapies at the Institute of Behavioral Research in Silver Spring, Maryland. After the founder of PETA worked undercover in the laboratory, documenting the procedures being carried out on the animals, as well as their living conditions, the police raided the facility and arrested the researcher on charges of animal abuse. While the researcher’s conviction was overturned on appeal, the publicity that accompanied these events allowed PETA to grow dramatically in terms of membership and clout.
One of the foundational tenets of PETA is the rejection of speciesism; it does not matter if the animal is a rat or a dolphin, it is worthy of protection. The organization lobbies government officials to support legislation imposing harsher punishments on those found in violation of current animal welfare laws; it also conducts significant public information campaigns to encourage people to convert to vegetarianism or veganism, boycott circuses and zoos, and reject clothing or household products made from animals. While their tactics have been seen as controversial by some – including assaulting those wearing fur with red paint, using visually disturbing images in the mass media, and using scantily-clad women to promote their agenda – there is no doubt they have been successful in their endeavors to raise social and political awareness.