Oh, PETA, PETA, PETA... where would I be without your shenanigans?
There has been an upswing in PETA (this would be the pro-animal rights group, not the 'people eating tasty animals' one) controversy in the past week. Some real classic moments. Who could forget Nia Long and her airbrushed poll? Or the beached, bikini clad whales of Jacksonville? I am going to gloss over my personal feelings on their objectified and twisted use of women and their nefarious art department and jump to the newest controversy.
PETA's panties are now in a twist over Kansas City's refusal to put their sculpture of a crying, chained, baby elephant up in a public, city park for a month long installation, which would be a protest to the circus whilst it is in town. Charming, really. While I do not regularly attend the circus, my gut feeling is that those baby elephants are living higher on the hog than a large segment of the world population (but why would we protest the starvation and trafficking of children?). What's more, PETA is challenging this refusal as an attack on 1st Amendment rights. Seriously??? A city can elect to put whatever they want up in a public space, hence the whole opting for something that won't be political or offend/disturb. Not to mention, the moment something is put up as 'art,' which this sculpture would clearly count as, it can be judged and rejected by anyone, anytime. I would also like to point out that this fiberglass elephant is not particularly well executed or visually pleasing AND it actually looks happy and festive. Kansas City will allow PETA to protest/rally and bring their elephant for a transient event, though. But not good enough... PETA wants a full month installation for their art. It is amazing how much self-righteousness has infiltrated their message so that they can't even understand that art, regardless of the author, does not have to be accepted. Or at least pick a blue state to debut that delightful little pachyderm (and hope that there is not a Feminist contingency in town lying in wait).
Whatever. It will be interesting to see the fallout over the 'save the whales,' too. There are so many groups that do billboard defacement/improvement art and I think it is safe to safe that this one is ripe for an embittered parody.
And now I am off to floss my teeth with a strip of bacon.
Check out the KC story: http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/story/1391745.html