SEATTLE – People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) stepped into unethical waters this week when it announced its coronavirus face mask campaign. The organization is selling the masks to “protect against pathogens while spreading a go vegan” message.
As yet, the source of the deadly coronavirus has not been confirmed, but many reports have suggested that it stems from eating bats or snakes. PETA uses those reports to sell the masks and the vegan lifestyle. “The SARS-like virus is believed to have originated in the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in Wuhan, China—a “wet market” where live and dead animals are sold for human consumption,” noted PETA in a press release.
In fact the wet market theory was all but dismissed days before PETA launched its campaign. Science Magazine reported days ago that a paper written by “large group of Chinese researchers from several institutions, offers details about the first 41 hospitalized patients who had confirmed infections with what has been dubbed 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV). In the earliest case, the patient became ill on 1 December 2019 and had no reported link to the seafood market, the authors report. “No epidemiological link was found between the first patient and later cases,” they state. Their data also show that, in total, 13 of the 41 cases had no link to the marketplace. “That’s a big number, 13, with no link,” says Daniel Lucey, an infectious disease specialist at Georgetown University.”
It is well-known that fear sells, and PETA went all out to ramp up fear of fowl and farm. “Filthy factory farms, slaughterhouses, and meat markets threaten the health of every human being on the planet by providing a breeding ground for deadly diseases like coronavirus, SARS, bird flu, and more,” stated PETA President Ingrid Newkirk in the press release. “PETA’s face masks urge everyone to protect themselves by avoiding meat like the plague.”