People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is on another woke jag this week, tweeting out an appeal to humans and asking them to stop using animal names as verbal insults toward other humans.
Why? Well, doing so constitutes “supremacist language,” for one thing.
Instead, PETA said, if you want to insult someone you believe lacks bravery, don’t call that person a “chicken” — that would be insulting to chickens. Instead, the animal-rights organization suggested, call that person a “coward.”
Words can create a more inclusive world, or perpetuate oppression.
Calling someone an animal as an insult reinforces the myth that humans are superior to other animals & justified in violating them.
Stand up for justice by rejecting supremacist language. pic.twitter.com/HFmMWDcc5A
— PETA (@peta) January 26, 2021
And if someone tends to tattle-tale or constantly report others’ behavior, don’t call that person a “rat” — use “snitch” instead. In addition, say “jerk” instead of “snake,” “repulsive” in lieu of “pig,” and “lazy” instead of “sloth.”
“Words can create a more inclusive world, or perpetuate oppression. Calling someone an animal as an insult reinforces the myth that humans are superior to other animals & justified in violating them,” PETA added in the tweet. “Stand up for justice by rejecting supremacist language.”
Were they done?
PETA wasn’t through. The organization continued with another tweet saying, “Anti-animal slurs degrade animals by applying negative human traits to certain species. Perpetuating the idea that animals are sly, dirty, or heartless desensitizes the public and normalizes violence against other animals.”
And: “Speciesist language isn’t just harmful, but it is also inaccurate. Pigs, for instance, are intelligent, lead complex social lives, and show empathy for other pigs in distress. Snakes are clever, have family relationships, and prefer to associate with their relatives.”
PETA finally concluded with the following post: “PETA urges everyone who believes in equality and justice to take a look at their personal beliefs and the language they use, and break free of this outdated mindset that denigrates other animals. Always be kind and consider not using insults at all.”
How did folks react?
As you might guess, there was a tad of pushback among Twitter users against PETA’s pleas:
- “Come back to me about being less superior than animals when an anteater builds a house,” one commenter said.
- “6 years vegan, please stop making us look ridiculous,” another user demanded.
- “LMAO But we ARE superior to animals; we are literally superior, mentally, and in most cases physically; our intelligence is far past the intelligence of animals, and we are justified in killing and eating them; we’re carnivores LOL,” another user observed. “I guess I’m a supremacist.”
- “Specieism? I think that’s more when orgs like yours demonize and openly kill dogs and cats for the sin of being meat eaters while only caring about barnyard animals,” another commenter noted. “You openly admit to murdering dogs and cats just for being homeless in this very thread, so…self awareness?”