Things PETA likes: animal rights and free range farming.
Things PETA hates: circuses and Justin Bieber.
If you've been following Justin Bieber's recent journeys, you may have noticed he's been on a bit of an exotic animal kick lately. It's actually kind of sweet. Nothing humanizes celebs whom I actually despise -- AND LET IT BE KNOWN, I DESPISE BIEBS -- like plopping them down next to a jungle animal.
If you photograph Mel Gibson next to a baby rhino and show it to me, I'm going to forgive him for everything and, yes, I mean THAT thing.
Look at this picture from a few weeks back of Justin with a tiger! Does that not immediately make you kind of forgive him for having dreadlocks for those few awful days he had dreadlocks?
Something I never considered, though, is how celebs even get near these animals. Obviously they aren't just hunting down these species in the wild, so usually that means these animals are shipped in by groups that just own wild animals, and if there is anything I know about those groups, it's they are usually run by deplorable humans.
Case in point: The Bowmanville Zoo, which is owned by Michael Hackenberger, who was charged with animal cruelty earlier this year, allegedly owns that tiger above.
PETA took extreme offense to Bieber posing with the animal and released a statement shortly after he uploaded the post. The statement said,
Exotic animals used for entertainment are usually torn away from their mothers at a young age, beaten into submission by trainers, and forced to live in cramped enclosures. They may even be fed sedatives so that they're docile during events and parties like the one Justin attended. Tigers used in this way are denied everything that they need to be happy, and we can only imagine that the tiger Justin posed with has experienced a life of misery. Justin and other guests are lucky that they weren't attacked by the wild animals. In similar situations, animals have been known to lash out because of the stress of their miserable lives. We're calling on Justin and his family never to use animals as selfie props or party entertainment again.
That didn't really stop Bieber from going on an animal-selfie binge, posing with another cute lil' *cough* probably abused *cough* jungle creature.
PETA was obviously not having any of this, releasing a follow-up statement to Refinery29, saying,
Nearly three weeks after posing with animals from an outfit whose owner is facing five counts of cruelty for mercilessly whipping a tiger, Justin Bieber is at it again. He apparently posed with the same baby lion who had been paraded at his father's engagement party and torn away from his mother shortly after birth — putting his life at risk so that he could be exploited for photo ops with clueless celebrities. This is cruelty, not conservation, and it's time for Bieber to say 'Sorry' for endorsing the sleazy exotic-animals trade.
Here is another shot of Justin with the cub.
World Animal Protection also released a statement, saying,
Show business is no business for wild animals — it's disappointing to see Justin Bieber yet again posing with a wild animal despite the welfare concerns and the cruelty involved in stunts like this. Lions belong in the wild, where their needs can be fully met, not in captivity for use as entertainment or photo props. People posing with wildlife don't realize that a 'once in a lifetime' photo for them means a lifetime of misery for the animal. To be used for entertainment, lions are forcibly removed from their mothers as cubs, trained to perform, and often suffer for the rest of their lives in captivity. They are also highly unpredictable, with people around the world having been mauled or attacked when posing or interacting with these animals. To people with huge influence like Justin Bieber, our message is simple: lions are wild animals, not entertainers.
This is Justin with the guy who apparently owns the cub. https://instagram.com/p/BFkRqW3O1Kr/embed/
Jeez. Justin? Hey, maybe find a new cute thing to pose with?