PeTA,” Daniel Lobo

January 23, 2020; KSNV-TV (Las Vegas, NV)

The trick with truly appreciating the brilliance of PETA, in my humble opinion, is to distance oneself—frankly, because so many of their campaigns are provocative in a deep-seated absurdist way that’s now part of the organization’s brand. But PETA, in acting out of the organization’s belief that many of our societal norms with regard to animal treatment are deeply objectionable, knows how to use the most far-flung circumstances to make a point.

Here are some of our personal favorites, in terms of being weird but thought-provoking:

I don’t feel that way about their newest ongoing campaign, which is far more straightforward, but it’s still an arresting strategy, which is to challenge Starbucks on its pricing policy that leads it to charging more for plant-based creamer than dairy based. This week, animal rights advocates have taken to Starbucks locations nationwide to protest this practice.

“Soy and nut milk shouldn’t cost a cent more than their dairy counterparts, which are cruel to cows, contribute to climate change, and are indigestible to many humans,” said Tracy Reiman, an executive vice president for the nonprofit. “PETA is upping the pressure on Starbucks to wake up and smell the coffee: It’s time for the unfair surcharge to end.”

Starbucks has already responded, offering some concessions which include lowering but not eliminating the surcharge.—Ruth McCambridge