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Animal Advocacy Charity PETA has launched the UK’s first FULL vegan tube-station (Subway) takeover on New Year’s Eve to encourage commuters to pledge to help animals, protect the environment, and get healthy by going vegan in 2017.
"Cows, chickens, and pigs are no different from human beings when it comes to feeling pain and fear and valuing their lives,” said Peta Director Elisa Allen.
PETA UK is encouraging people everywhere to show compassion to animals by skipping meat-based meals and choosing humane and healthy vegan fare instead.
We caught up with PETA Director Elisa Allen, Director PETA UK and asked her a few questions about the campaign.
People are constantly bombarded with advertisements for meat products. We wanted to counteract those by sharing a message of compassion and reminding commuters that cows, pigs, and chickens are not steaks, burgers, or nuggets – but rather living, feeling beings.
We've had the campaign planned for several months and were thrilled to see Veganuary's posters splashed across tube carriages – there's no such thing as having too many pro-vegan adverts!
The location was chosen based on its footfall and availability in the New Year.
As with many of our campaigns, we'll be looking for a spike in the number of requests for our free vegan starter kit.
It's hard to reach many people by handing out leaflets, so out of necessity, social causes must be creative – this is why PETA often uses humour, sex, and other attention-grabbingtactics to reach a populace that is bombarded with paid advertising from industries that sell wares that harm animals. (For example, this hilarious video featuring a vulgar granny discussing "eating f**king [animal] corpses" has been viewed nearly 25 million times.) Unlike our opposition, which is mostly composed of wealthy industries and corporations, PETA must rely on getting free publicity through media coverage, which is why we make our actions colourful or controversial. While our ads are always honest, we believe that it's sometimes necessary to shake people up or make them do a double-take in order to initiate discussion, debate, and questioning of the status quo – with the worthy aim that they'll ultimately change a cruel, if unconscious, habit or take some compassionate action to help animals.
I don't see why not. And even if it's not a billboard advert, it's always possible to spread a pro-vegan message in Trafalgar Square. In fact, PETA was there a few months ago roasting a "dog" beneath a banner proclaiming, "If You Wouldn't Eat a Dog, Why Eat a Pig? Try Vegan" (the realistic-looking roast "dog" was made from seitan). The action not only grabbed the attention of passers-by but also made headlines around the world.
There's a vegan revolution in progress, as a record number of people are ditching animal flesh in favour of plant-based foods. And as more and more people ditch animal-derived ingredients and materials, we'll continue to see pro-vegan adverts not just from organisations like PETA but also from companies that want to tap into the ever-growing vegan market.
The campaign takes over from the success of the 2500 poster effort by the Veganuary team in December 2016, you can read more about that here.
Photo Credit: Generaljoy Instagram
Robbie is a film maker, journalist and co-founder of plantbasednews.org. He also co-created the vegan film SWINE. In his spare time he works as a campaigner teaching people about the benefits of the vegan lifestyle.
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