mom2nomads

ahhh, the life of a diplomatic princess . . .

Archive for the tag “PETA Black Boy”

The Truth About PETA: Another Former Employee Comes Forward

Five years ago I wrote the first of many pieces on my experiences as a field worker for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. The piece, “Rescued By Black Boy: how a neglected dog set me back on my path, away from PETA,” detailed a job that was the opposite of what you might expect. You would think a field worker for arguably the most powerful animal rights organization in the world — whose job included working in the most impoverished areas of Hampton Roads and beyond, investigating cruelty and abuse cases, taking in animals, some of whom were well loved but many of whom were neglected at best — would be tasked with rescuing, nurturing, and rehoming animals in need. But nothing could be further from the truth. Instead, I was instructed to lie in order to gain custody of animals — to tell people we would do our very best to find new homes if they would only surrender custody of their animals. Then I was instructed to kill those animals and make NO effort to rehome them. And I was berated and ridiculed by leadership when I spoke up about wanting to adopt out animals rather than kill them immediately.

Contrary to PETA’s assertion that nearly every animal who enters through their doors, or ends up in their vans, ends up dead because most are beyond saving, the vast majority of the animals surrendered to PETA during my tenure were healthy and highly adoptable, and I am positive this is still the case today.  Some may have needed a little rehabilitation — either for health reasons or socialization reasons — but that’s nothing shelters don’t deal with on a daily basis. Except for PETA’s “shelter,” because it is not a shelter, it is a place where animals are brought to die.

PETA’s response to my initial blog, and those that followed, was to call me a “disgruntled employee” who was fired for my “instability”  (in stark contrast to a performance review shortly before my firing where I was called an “excellent” employee and given a raise, of which I have proof if you click on the attached link) and was now on the warpath for vengeance. Fifteen years after I was fired. They then proceeded to attack me, and sit back while others attacked me for them.

For five years I have waited, hoped, prayed, for another former PETA employee to come forward about PETA’s euthanasia practices, about how employees are instructed to lie in order to gain custody of animals, about what it’s like to work in an organization many (rightly so) refer to as a “cult.” And now someone has, in a piece entitled “When the Crusade for Animals Falls Victim to Oppression.” Tears filled my eyes as I read her piece, partly because it is painful to read about such difficult experiences, and partly because I was so grateful to finally be vindicated. All along I, and those who know me, and many who don’t, have known I was telling the truth about PETA. But I so desperately wanted someone else to come forward, to show that I am not the mentally unstable, vengeful person PETA claims. Not because I care about what anyone thinks of me personally but because it would expose them as the liars they are –demonstrating how they have lied about me in order to protect their “shelter.” And, in small part, because their character attack was so brutal that, at its worst, they attempted to jeopardize my husband’s career by fabricating several lies about us. In that moment my mother bear instincts kicked in hard and the fight became deeply personal. To finally have another firsthand account, one more voice telling the truth, to expose PETA’s practices, is something for which I am eternally grateful.

Today we are two voices, tomorrow we could be four, the next day more. I, once again, ask former employees to join us in speaking the truth because, trust me, we are much stronger together. Working for PETA, in that toxic place, was soul crushing. I am deeply grateful to Black Boy — he was my savior and my angel, and he paid the ultimate price for that. But  because he made me see how far I’d strayed, animals like my Cito, plucked off the streets of Honduras, are alive — I thank him every day for that and so much more. I say to other former employees that speaking out, fighting their killing, making amends, is healing. Without it, I could not have healed from what I allowed myself to do at PETA.

And, to PETA, I hope you’re prepared. While I have been quiet lately I have not forgotten my promise to Black Boy and to Maya — to never stop fighting and to never let them be forgotten. I am not going anywhere, I am in this until the end. And the only way this will end is when you stop killing the animals you should be saving.

PETA: Lie Away, Doesn’t Change the Fact that Your Shelter is A Slaughterhouse

I’ve written many times about Maya, the dog who was stolen and killed by PETA employees, about the lawsuit Maya’s family has filed against PETA, and about my desire to do whatever I can to help Maya’s family find justice. Things in the legal realm are well under way, and the most recent thing to happen is that PETA responded to the individual complaints against them. For a spot on run down of PETA’s latest lies, er, response you can read the most recent blog piece by Nathan Winograd, “It’s the Family’s Fault We Stole and Killed Their Dog.

There’s no point in reiterating what Mr. Winograd has already concisely laid out so I only want to touch on one thing. I was reading through PETA’s answers yesterday and when I got to point 19, the point addressing my blog and my employment with PETA, I was a little shocked. After I wrote my initial blog piece about Black Boy, the dog who ultimately saved me from going too far down the evil rabbit hole that is the cult of PETA, PETA predictably responded by writing me off as a vindictive ex-employee out for revenge — a plot for revenge, apparently, that took me 15 years to cook up.  Because I’m just that slow. Whatever. Then came the point where PETA attempted to put into jeopardy my husband’s job with lies and, frankly, libelous accusations. That pissed me off, because when you mess with Eric’s job you mess with my family — my children. And that is beyond the pale. But their threats were hollow and we all knew it so we shook it off. Then came the relentless cyber bullying by one, or several, anonymous Twitter users — all in PETA’s name, all tagging PETA (so they were seeing it), which they did nothing about. My own moral compass would have led me to do whatever I could to stop attacks — attacks of a sexual nature, attacks that made racial and anti-LGBTQ slurs, attacks that accused me of abusing my children — in my name. PETA, not so much. But all of that was predictable so I rolled with it. And my older kids (who are on Twitter and, therefore, saw everything), bless them, handled the attacks with grace.

But when I read PETA’s latest lie about me I was a little gobsmacked because it was so out of left field.

Upon information and belief, the blog author is a prior employee of PETA who was terminated after a few months because her instability prevented her from doing her job.

Now, I don’t know how that sounds to ya’ll, but it sounds to me like PETA’s legal team is implying I was (am?) emotionally unstable and, therefore, unable to do my job. Which is news to me. I can be kind of flighty, sometimes a little scatterbrained, and, thankfully, my friends seem to think my awkward quirkiness is cute. But emotionally unstable? Wow, PETA, kudos to you for creativity. And for actually surprising me for once. Again, with libel, but I didn’t see this particular lie coming. Because, frankly, the only thing that prevented me from doing my job the way that PETA wanted me to was my humanity.

I suppose they’re trying to paint me as unhinged for the judge. Maybe, once again, they’re trying to intimidate me in the hopes that I’ll sit down and shut up. I can’t control what the judge thinks of me, I can only continue to tell the truth. But I would like, once again, to tell PETA a few things.

First, I am still Honey Badger. I don’t care what lies you put out there, I don’t care what people might assume about me. The only opinions about me that matter are those of the people I love — and they all know I’m telling the truth. Your attempts to soil my reputation mean nothing to me.

Second, I am not backing down. I am still determined to do whatever I can to expose the fact that you don’t run a shelter, you run a slaughterhouse. I am determined to do whatever I can to help the Zarate family find justice in their lawsuit against you. And every time you make up new lies about me the only  thing that happens is I dig my heels deeper into the muck that is the truth about PETA. You don’t scare me, you can’t intimidate me. But keep talking, because with each lie you tell about me, my fire burns brighter. And, once again, I won’t back down.

Post Navigation