Peninsula SPCA president rips American Humane chicken ads
From ANIMAL PEOPLE, July-August 2013:
SAN MATEO, California––Local humane society presidents rarely criticize national humane organizations and even less often jump into farmed animal issues, at risk of alienating meat-eating donors, but Peninsula Humane Society & SPCA president Ken White on May 30, 2013 bucked convention on both points.
“There’s nothing unusual about dumb TV commercials,” White began in an op-ed essay for the Huffington Post, “but I am especially annoyed by a recent spot which brings us a combined message from Foster Farms and the American Humane Association in which we watch human-size talking chickens…attempt to fool us into believing that they too deserve the American Humane Association Certified label.
“I completely support the notion that people who wish to eat meat can and should want the animals to be well cared for,” White wrote, “and should want them to be more rather than less humanely killed as they go from manufacturer to table.
“My issue here is about messaging which reduces live animals to talking fools so desperate to be eaten that they adopt slapstick antics to fool us into thinking they were raised by this manufacturer rather than that manufacturer. And I am offended that an organization with the word humane in its name would lend that name to this effort.
“Foster Farms is in the business of selling chickens,” White acknowledged. “I don’t expect much from them in terms of promoting a broad ethical view of animals. The AHA, however, was founded 150 years ago as a voice of advocacy for children and animals. I do expect better of them.”
White in conclusion reminded readers that, “American Humane Association, Humane Society of the U.S., and American SPCA)are not the “mothership” organizations for any of the thousands of local humane societies and SPCAs around the nation.”
White in October 2010 and June 2011 SFGate columns criticized national humane organizations for distributing fundraising appeals which in his view misleadingly imply that the national organizations are funding the local animal rescue work done by local humane societies.
(See “Fundraising turf war brings California groups’ complaint against the ASPCA,” ANIMAL PEOPLE, June 2011.)