Posted: 5:00 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2011
TULSA, Okla. —
A new billboard that may go up soon in Tulsa would feature a picture of a crossbred animal meant to educate kids about Thanksgiving turkeys. It's from PETA and they ask, "Kids, if you wouldn't eat your dog, why eat a turkey?"
When we learned PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) may be placing these billboards in the community, we wanted to know what the reasoning was. So, I got on the phone to Paige Snyder, a representative for the group.
"Thanksgiving should be a time for celebration and not a time for animal abuse," she said. "Turkeys may not be as familiar to us as dogs and cats, but they have the same capacity to suffer and that's something kids inately understand."
The plan is to place the billboards near Tulsa schools to spark discussions between kids and parents.
"There are lots of kids out there who just don't want to see a dead bird as a centerpiece at Thanksgiving dinner. Hopefully our billboards will spark discussions with their parents." She says then maybe kids would want to give the turkeys a break.
Snyder told me Tulsa is one of only three cities being targeted with the illustrations.
"We're hoping to get them up in Tulsa, Jacksonville and also Salem, Oregon," she said.
And the alternative Thanksgiving meal-a Tofurky. It's a simulated, largely soy-based meat-like product that PETA officials are certain would delight children who know of the plight of the 250 million turkeys killed in the U.S. each year. Almost 40 million of those are killed for the holiday.
PETA's website says turkeys that are bred for food are often crammed into dirty warehouses and die from disease, smothering or heart attack before being slaughtered. The organization points out that the breeding process makes harvest turkeys overweight and their legs buckle from the excess meat.
PETA says vegan meals are a more humane source for holiday food.