Using Twitter as the test tube, the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) are taking the flower by the thorns to bring home the bagels.
But judging from responses, they may be feeding a fed horse.
Don't mind our animal-friendly language but PETA suddenly tweeted yesterday (Dec 4) a list of English phrases that they consider to be discriminatory towards animals.
Words matter, and as our understanding of social justice evolves, our language evolves along with it. Here’s how to remove speciesism from your daily conversations. pic.twitter.com/o67EbBA7H4— PETA (@peta) 4 December 2018
You read that correctly.
It's called speciesism, defined by Encyclopaedia Britannica as "the practice of treating members of one species as morally more important than members of other species [and] the belief that this practice is justified".
In others words, the human species versus everyone else.
With the tweet, PETA, a high-profile animal rights organisation, have managed to drive their agenda while sounding tongue-in-cheek at the same time.
Feeding two birds with one scone, basically.
They elaborated in another tweet that cruelty to animals is linked to the way humans communicate and anti-animal lingo is as bad as "racist, homophobic or ableist language".
As expected, the internet did not disappoint.
This anti-animal language really steams my clams— admiral nel (@theadmiralnel) 5 December 2018
I would’ve loved to have been a fly on the wall at the staff meeting that dreamt up this ad campaign. They were busy bees indeed & they must be dog tired from their efforts. I hope the person who gave this the green light gets the lion’s share of the credit...or scone, er, scorn.— The Official Unofficial Mark In SoCal (@mlzema) 5 December 2018
Stop monkeying around— MJ (@MoJundi) 5 December 2018
I think what PETA is trying to say is that when it comes to language, there's more than one way to skin a cat. https://t.co/d6cpyubkrA— Seth Keysor (@RealMNchiefsfan) 5 December 2018
Hold your horses on this one PETA. You let the cat out of the bag as everyone knew about this elephant in the room. Now you’ll get a lion’s share of jokes made on twitter in December.— The-Lying-Lama (@KyaUkhaadLega) 5 December 2018
It’s a crop eat crop world out there— Mikey Courtenay (@MikeyC7) 5 December 2018
Others dissected PETA's wordplay.
Feeding a fed horse wastes food, forces uneven eating habits upon an animal, and could subject it to obesity, liver problems, joint issues, breathing problems, and all sorts of health issues, including death.— Trevor S. Valle (@tattoosandbones) 5 December 2018
Congrats. You just lobbied to kill horses, dipshits.
"Take the flower by the thorns" doesn't even mean the same thing. "Taking the bull by the horns" is about taking decisive action in a dangerous situation. "Taking the flower by the thorns" is just bad gardening advice.— 🎄 Don't Be a Christmas Brash 🎄 (@MJWhitehead) 5 December 2018
@PETA, words matter. Since scones are made with butter and cream, and birds lack the ability to digest lactose, your admonition to "feed two birds with one scone" is a call to animal cruelty.— Jon Hutson (@JonHutson) 5 December 2018
You can't feed birds scones or they'll become accustomed to human food and get aggressive. Then you'll have to kill them with stones and we're back where we started.— alanWILBUR (@alancwilbur) 5 December 2018
I think most people are able to determine the difference between a metaphor and actual animal cruelty? 🤔— Lando Loves Norwich (@BigDollarRich) 5 December 2018
We really, really hope PETA aren't serious.