PETA Supports New Slaughterhouse Construction, With a Caveat

Press release from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla. – Although many residents are up in arms over plans to build a new taxpayer-funded slaughterhouse in Alachua County, PETA fired off a letter on February 17 to the Board of County Commissioners expressing its support for the project—if, that is, the facility is built with glass walls or includes livestreamed video footage so the public can see what happens inside it.

PETA notes that Alachua County Commission Chair Anna Prizzia may embrace the need for such transparency, as she has publicly stated that industrial slaughterhouses are often cited for “safety violations” and that “the animals are treated as a commodity rather than living beings, and consumers have little to no understanding of the process.”

“As long as people eat meat, they can’t complain when a slaughterhouse comes to their town, and Alachua County leaders seem to recognize that people have no idea of the houses of horror these places are,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is asking county commissioners to seize this opportunity to build a literally transparent slaughterhouse because taxpayers have a right to see what they’re paying for.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—offers a free vegan starter kit and opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram.

PETA’s letter to the Board of County Commissioners follows.

February 17, 2023

Dear Alachua County Board of Commissioners:

We’re writing from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA entities have more than 9 million members and supporters globally, including many thousands across Florida) to support the proposed construction of a cow slaughterhouse in Alachua County—but with one special request.

This proposed structure would be built with taxpayer funding, so it’s reasonable that it should have a glass wall or walls so that everyone could see inside. That would not only provide a degree of accountability but also allow anyone who wants to see what goes on inside such a place to witness the terror and torment that animals endure before they’re killed for food. Please allow me to elaborate.

Meat is no longer considered a healthy food, and animal agriculture is now condemned for contributing mightily to greenhouse gas emissions. Add to that the suffering of a vast number of animals as sensitive as you, me, or any dog or cat. As Sir Paul McCartney famously said, “If slaughterhouses had glass walls, no one would eat meat.”

It’s easy to forget where meat comes from when you see it in neatly wrapped packages in a grocery store, but animals don’t go peacefully for it. They tremble in terror, as they smell the blood and hear the cries of those ahead of them on the kill line. When it’s their turn, cows are shot in the head with a captive-bolt gun—which we have shown is not always accurately aimed—and hung up by one leg, often dislocating their hips. Then their throats are cut and they are gutted—sometimes while they’re still conscious. They fight for their lives because, just like you and me, they don’t want to die.

Surely, everyone has the right to see this process and to consider who animals are, what makes them tick, and how they feel, especially since the meat industry is heavily subsidized by taxpayers. Cows are curious, clever animals who sometimes go to extraordinary lengths to escape slaughter. They understand cause-and-effect relationships and become excited when they figure out how to do something, such as operating a water pump with their horns. They are gregarious, forming intense friendships and holding grudges against herd members who have treated them badly. They are thinking, feeling individuals.

The residents who have pointed out how cruel, dangerous, environmentally destructive, and unhealthy it is to kill and eat sentient beings are correct. Meanwhile, vegan foods continue to proliferate on grocery store shelves. But should you insist on building a slaughterhouse, at least be transparent about what goes on inside it by giving it a viewing wall and livestreaming its operations for the rest of the world to see.

Thank you for your consideration. We look forward to hearing from you.

Very truly yours,
Ingrid Newkirk

  • Hate to be the bearer of bad news but livestock is a commodity. It’s traded in the markets and prices are determined by such.

    Surely not everyone wants to see how the process of getting their dinner from pasture to table occurs. Some may, sell tickets for those interested. Another funding source for the county.

    As for me, I’m making some chicken tonight, pork chops tomorrow & probably a steak this weekend. Of course that all depends on much higher inflation causes the prices to increase. Anyone seen the price of a dozen eggs lately? Gotta love how much the current administration has helped consumers…NOT.

    • Current administration has nothing to do with avian flu and egg prices. Direct your ire at congress which refuses to pass a windfall profits tax on companies benefiting from high inflation.

      • Joe, when you inject billions of dollars into the economy as a prop, what do you expect to happen? The current administration did that & attempted to give away more. Current local leadership is still spending, or at least creating ways to spend it.
        They’re not cutting down the debt, they’re passing it down to future generations.

  • When we see PETA members walking around naked in the outdoors, preying on weaker nudists for food, then we’ll think about their brand of “equity.”

  • PETA as delusional as ever learn to mind your own business, what a bunch of “intellectually disableds”.

  • Black people were once a commodity. My experience with animal concerns and our county comissioners is, they like many people have not evolved to the extent of being able to relate to feelings beyond their own.

  • Good ol’ PETA. Let’s ignore biology enitrely (you know- “the science”) and force everyone to eat the way we want them to eat. No thanks, Ingrid. I’ll keep eating the way God intended me to eat. I wonder Ingrid, have you have ever taken any medications that were developed through animal research? Would you refuse a life-saving procedure if you knew it had been developed on animals? I mean, transparency, right? We readers want to know. And by the way, thanks to animal research, people like you are able to whine on average for about 20 years longer.

  • Our ranchers need a near-by facility. We would benefit by having more local meats rather than everything coming from Chicago.

    • We’ve got plenty of “meatheads” pretending to do what’s best for the community.
      We need lower taxes and lower utility rates.

  • So the facility would be taxpayer funded. Everything this county touches turns to sh*t. The products would likely be as affordable as GRU.

  • >