Celebrity Activists Need To Break Up With PETA
News broke today that actor James Cromwell had apparently superglued his hands to a Starbucks counter in Midtown. No, it wasn’t a mishap caused while doing arts & crafts while enjoying a wet microwaved panini. It was apparently a form of protest, meant to draw attention to the fact that… Starbucks charges more money for plant-based milk versus the OG animal variety. For animal rights, apparently, not just because he was mad. This raises a large variety of questions, such as: who cares? As well as the fact that a Starbucks is absolutely able to operate as normal with one old guy glued to a table.
Some of you, reading a description of a horribly planned and highly ineffective protest meant to draw attention to a weirdly specific and somewhat inconsequential facet of animal rights, may already have an inkling who’s responsible: that’s right, it’s PETA! The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and absolutely idiotic, tone-deaf protests. At this point, pretty much anybody with a couple synapses to spark together is aware that PETA is a publicity-starved organization that is almost single-handedly holding up the stereotype of the obnoxious, red-paint tossing animal rights activist.
For some reason, though, celebrities seem to have never gotten the memo. A lot of celebrities through time seem to make animal rights their cause of choice, perhaps because it gives the illusion of a moral crusader without forcing any actual real political stance that could hurt their marketability or fandom. Maybe that same convenience is what stops them from doing any actual research into the organization they’re making themselves a soldier of.
PETAs missteps and faux-pas greatly outnumber their wins, in the way that I don’t think they’ve ever actually won anything. Especially in a modern world where most people are at least somewhat aware of the horrors of factory farming, adopt rescue dogs with fervor, and pay a premium for “ethical” products, the need for campaigns comparing eating meat to the Holocaust are more outrageous than ever.
They even managed to make enemies of actual activists with a campaign offering to pay to turn the water of low-income Detroit residents back on in exchange for a promise of going vegan. So look, celebrities: I plead with you to get these nutjobs off your “good deed” speed dial. Find an actual, impactful organization or cause to support if you need to. Or don’t! You can just be the guy from Succession without trying to be a role model. It’ll greatly decrease your chances of getting glued to a Midtown coffee shop counter.
Top Image: Toglenn/Brian Stansberry