Tuesday, February 28, 2006

All Aboard the Crazy Train

PETA is upset and raising a mini-raucous over a high school agriculture class demonstration of a pig castration. My big problem with PETA has always been their hypersensitivity to non-examples of animal cruelty. While some of their causes are laudable, often times they display a shallow understanding of reality.

This situation is a clear example of that. Animal castration is a part of agricultural life and is necessary to manage the livestock. It improves the quality of the meat and calms male animals. The classroom exercise was meant to show future farmers how the procedure is done; but the demonstration was not a mandatory part of the class. In letters and statements, PETA and its supports have claimed that by teaching it in this one particular class, it is desensitizing youth to animal cruelty and might even be responsible for the prevalence of violence in school children.

These claims are completely ridiculous. PETA would be much more productive and respected if it focused on examples of real animal cruelty instead of demonstrating how extreme it is by attacking non-issues like this one.