PETA demonstrates in front of Student Union

Posted on Mar 5 2014 - 8:16am by Logan Kirkland

This week, peta2, PETA’s youth division, is demonstrating this week in front of the Student Union in order to educate students and bring awareness to industrialized animal agriculture and factory farming.

Sacha Sweet, the peta2 tour administrator, said it is important for peta2 to reach out to the younger population.

“We go to college campuses, we attend concerts and we talk to the younger crowd,” Sweet said.

Sweet said this gives the group the opportunity to lift the curtain of industrialized agriculture and farming in the United States.

Sweet said that specifically in the tent they are demonstrating how there are more than ten billion land-based animal slaughters for human consumption every year in the U.S alone.

“We are just trying to inform people on where exactly their food is coming from,” Sweet said.

Kenneth Montville, the peta2 College Campaigning Coordinator, said The University of Mississippi is one of 60 schools that is a part of the “Glass Walls” tour.

“We work with student groups who are interested in hosting the exhibit,” he said.

Montville said it is important for them to present this demonstration to college students because this is when people start making their own decisions.

“We make sure it can reach as many students as possible,” Montville said.

Sweet said one of the most popular and effective parts of the exhibit is the gestation crate. With the gestation crate students get a first person perspective of the life of a pig being held in a factory farm.

“The coolest thing about the crate is the fact that kids can actually get inside of it,” Sweet said. “Students are actually very moved by the gestation crate in particular, it’s a really really great piece of the exhibit.”

Sweet said nothing in the exhibit is too intense, it is just the reality of what the animals experience.

“I wouldn’t call anything in the exhibit extreme,” Sweet said. “Everything that we show is standard industry practice in the United States.”

Sophomore political science major Lasharda Leasy said she knew some information about how animals were being treated, but she was interested in what Peta2 had to say.

“I’ve seen lots of videos and documentaries about how the animals are treated,” Leasy said. “So I just wanted to just stop in and see what take they had on it.”

Leasy said she learned about the overall health issues that are taking place in these factories.

“It’s very detrimental to their health as well as ours,” she said. “It’s pretty messed up.”

Sophomore biology major Aaron Salters said he just saw the tent in front of the union and wanted to stop and see what was inside.

Salters said after seeing what was in the tent, he felt animals were being mistreated.

“It was an eye-opening experience,” Salters said.

Latayvin Taylor, a sophomore criminal justice major, said he grew up being a meat eater, and although it is hard to change something like that in one day, he definitely took something from this demonstration.

“I’ve learned a lot,” Taylor said. “Animal cruelty is very serious.”

Sweet said he encourages those who are skeptical of their cause to please stop by as well those who are interested.

“If you do come through, come through with an open mind,” Sweet said. “Increasing overall awareness is all that we want to do. That’s what we’re here for.”

Peta2 will be demonstrating today from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Logan Kirkland