In Jacksonville, Florida, the newly unveiled PETA Save the Whales. Lose the Blubber. Go Vegetarian billboard has proven controversial. See photos, video and find out more about the latest campaign of the animal rights organization to raise a few human eyebrows.
The new billboard has generated controversy far beyond Jacksonville, Florida for its use of the shock value of comparing the overweight and the obese to whales. Thus “save the whales” is obviously not targeting harpooners who kill whales but rather humans who may carry some extra pounds. Specifically, in illustrating the “lose the blubber” phrase, the billboard uses an illustration of an obese woman in a bikini, in case the metaphor is otherwise unclear.
The PETA Save the Whales billboard can be seen here in this photo.
For its part PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) explains the impetus for the campaign in a press release which asserts that going vegetarian can be “an effective way to shed those extra pounds that keep them from looking good in a bikini.” The press release goes on to state:
Anyone wishing to achieve a hot “beach bod” is reminded that studies show that vegetarians are, on average, about 10 to 20 pounds lighter than meat-eaters…
“Trying to hide your thunder thighs and balloon belly is no day at the beach,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman.
Although overwhelming scientific and clinical studies may reveal the health consequences of obesity and overweight, the confrontational nature of the ad has made some upset, and some have called it sexist, as discussed in the video report below.. Huffington Post further reports on the response from Ashley Byrne, who is a senior campaigner for PETA to the controversy.
“Our goal is help overweight Jacksonville residents – the best way to do that is to go vegetarian. We’re not trying to insult anyone. [….] Vegetarians look and feel better than meat eaters. This is a life-saving message.”
Readers, please share your thoughts. Has the PETA Save the Whales, Lose the Blubber, Go Vegetarian billboard gone too far? Watch video below.