For almost nine years now, I have worked with the interactive media team at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals as a web design contractor. As the largest animal rights organization in the world and one who fearlessly confronts animal abuse on many levels, PETA tends to get a lot of press, and unfortunately much of it paints the non-profit organization in a negative light. But anyone who pushes to change the status quo or stand up for the rights of the disenfranchised and oppressed is met with opposition and resistance, so I see this as a sign that we are moving in the right direction.
I invite you to check out this feature on PETA’s Community Animal Project. This division of PETA deals with the tough and heart-wrenching realities of very desperate animals who have nowhere else to turn. Animal overpopulation due to breeding instead of adopting is a huge problem that PETA tackles by offering free and low-cost spaying and neutering and encouraging animal adoption. But when severely neglected, sick, abused, and dying animals have nowhere else to turn or languish and suffer in “no-kill” shelters, PETA isn’t afraid to step in and deal with the brutal realities of the overpopulation crisis. The video below gives a glimpse into CAP and the animals they help, and gives some context to PETA’s numbers and stance on animal euthanasia. In a cruel world, the most humane option in some animals’ cases is a painless end to their suffering. PETA is one of the few organizations that has the guts to do whatever it can for each animal it helps and for as many animals as possible.
I may only play a small role at PETA by updating their web sites and designing bits and pieces of their online presence, but I am continually blown away by the compassion, dedication, talent, creativity, and brilliance of the people I work with. I just returned from Norfolk, Virginia, where our department got together for a retreat to train, plan, and meet face to face since we are spread out all over. After a week of crazy winter travel, playing in the surprise snow, learning and training, meeting and strategizing, hanging out with the people I work with, and petting plenty of adorable rescued animals, I return home inspired, awestruck, and with renewed dedication to this brave and hard-working organization.
The hardest part about working with PETA has always been dealing with people’s misunderstandings of what we do and ugly comments and misguided hate towards the organization. And the best part, that far overshadows having to deal with the bullshit, is the people I get to work with. I am so grateful to be part of such a big-hearted, talented, dedicated team and organization. Thank you for all you do for animals, PETA people! And thanks for taking in a silly circus freak like me and giving me a flexible job that allows me to use my skills for a good cause. I love my job!