Friday, March 18, 2016

SeaWorld admits employees spied on animal-rights activists

Beleaguered SeaWorld admits employees spied on animal-rights activists

By Lindsey Bever February 25,2016

SeaWorld’s chief executive admitted Thursday that employees have posed as animal-rights activists and vowed that the company will end the controversial practice.


The admission — and promise — came months after a prominent animal welfare organization accused the entertainment company of sending a worker to infiltrate its group and incite violence among protesters.


People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) said last year that SeaWorld San Diego worker Paul McComb had been a double agent inside the organization.

PETA spokeswoman Lindsay Rajt told told the San Diego Union-Tribune at the time that McComb “seemed to be trying to incite confrontational and illegal actions against SeaWorld and distract from SeaWorld’s own wrongdoing and smear people that may reflect poorly on our cause.”


PETA and other animal rights groups have been known to send workers to spy on the opposition as well. In the past, PETA has publicized undercover operations and called on the government for reform.


One undercover operation attempted to expose conditions at a Butterball factory farm, where PETA claimed workers “punched and stomped on wild turkeys.” Another at Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus seemed to show workers “beating, whipping, and hooking elephants,” among other things.
[There is an obvious difference between trying to find out if someone is doing wrong, and encouraging them to do wrong. Nobody has accused animal rights people of encouraging mistreatment of animals.]

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