PETA has been known to take some pretty extreme measures to get public attention for what it considers cruelty to animals. But apparently the Norfolk, VA-based group has a fun side as well when it comes to getting media attention. This year, it's asking a Nebraska high school to change its football team's name from Packers to Pickers.
"The name 'Packers' is glorifying slaughterhouses," explains Dan Shannon, PETA's vegan outreach coordinator. "This campaign is about letting people know what that name supports."
PETA has also tried to get the NFL's Green Bay Packers to change its name to the Six Packers, in honor of the Dairy State's other major export.
When that effort failed, PETA decided to look for high schools around the US using the Packers name. Last year, it wrote a high school in Austin, MN, hometown for Hormel and Spam.
Shannon doesn't expect big changes, and even admits his high school campaign is a bit tongue-in-cheek.
"People think it's funny, they appreciate that we're trying to have a sense of humor," he says.
This year's target is Omaha South High School, situated near a major slaughterhouse.
PETA sent a letter to the principal arguing that: "Many of the animals 'packed' in Omaha are cattle who are dehorned, branded, and castrated without anesthetics. These sensitive animals are then slaughtered by being hung upside down and having their throats slit by 'packers.' This is not exactly an occupation to cheer for!"
Ah, but one can only imagine the fearsome cheers PETA's missive might inspire should the cheerleading squad get their pom-poms on it.