Deconstructing the McCruelty Campaign
Brandon asked me to write about the McCruelty Campaign and here's what struck me:
- I watched the video, which uses "Free Me," the Goldfinger song that originally promoted veganism. It makes sense in the promotion of veganism, but in this context, the words free me are meaningless as there's no real plea to free anyone. I found that odd.
- I clicked on the chick on the bottom left so I could "Take Action," and my action was to write a letter to McDonald's asking them to use controlled atmostphere killing (CAK)–to kill the chickens in a different way. The subject line reads: "Reduce the Abuse."
- I can "Learn More," such as that there is a "less-cruel method of slaughter" (CAK).
- What is probably most surreal, is PeTA's own words regarding the original campaign against McDonald's in 2000. I don't know how many of my charitable dollars went to it, but here's the upshot:
McDonald's made some basic animal welfare improvements. Since that
time, the company has refused to eliminate the worst abuses that its
chickens suffer in the U.S., including abuses during slaughter."
So we have PeTA, by their own admission, basically saying the original campaign didn't work. And I don't think you can say that it worked but that McDonald's didn't hold up their end of the bargain. In my mind, an initiative or legislation only "works" when it does the thing it's designed to do–when the intended outcome is achieved. And of course, when there is enforcement.
Otherwise it's just words. So in 2000 we had X dollars that went to a bunch of words that didn't result in even a small impact in the welfare of chickens, let alone saving any lives. I ask you: Is this what animal rights is about?
I would have liked to have seen language about not eating chickens and going vegan. Why write letters to reduce abuse, which may or may not occur, when by doing that you're admitting that there will still be abuse? Does PeTA have members who will stop going to McDonald's until they transition to CAK, and then go back to McDonald's? (The answer could very well be Yes; I have no idea.)
Those are my thoughts. What are yours?