PETA vs. CEI: A Surprisingly Amiable Exchange of Ideas

Yesterday, the DCist reported that PETA planned a protest outside of the Capital Grille, a meat-centric restaurant here in the nation’s capital.

The point, according to the organization’s press release, is to convince folks that “meat is not green” by showing that the meat and dairy industries contribute to global warming because cows release methane gas into the atmosphere thereby compounding greenhouse gases.

Despite recently released reports that suggest cow-methane production is much less than previously estimated, and that not only cows, but also other animals, marshlands, and anything decomposing produces methane gases, the PETA folks decide to target meat-eaters. Why?

The reason PETA chose meat-eaters as their target is because they are an animal protection group-not a world protection group. The mission of their organization is to prevent animal killing, abuse, and exploitation. They simply latched onto the global warming angle as way to promote their agenda.

CEI staged a counter rally nearby and we were prepared for a shouting match, but to PETA’s credit, they were pretty accepting of our presence. Of course, they may have been a little shy to get in any altercation considering they only had three people and we had about seven folks. We had signs expressing the deliciousness of meat while they had a person dressed as a cow and pamphlets appealing to individuals to consider giving up meat.

While their arguments made it pretty clear that PETA is more concerned with animals than the welfare of humanity, their appeals to the individual to voluntarily change their behavior on an individual level are acceptable and fine way to try and “change the world” and as far as we could tell they weren’t petitioning governments to get involved and prevent the production of meat or consumption of energy as other environmentalists groups do.

Our counter rally, which was more of a pro-meat/pro-humanity rally, seemed to receive a much more enthusiastic reception from passers-by as we handed out Enjoy Capitalism stickers and free sticks of beef jerky.

In the end people love meat and the industrialized production and shipping of meat has substantially improved the quality of life and nutrition for people around the world. Sorry cows.