"...Groundhog Day is right around the corner and the animal rights group PETA would like to replace the adorable Punxsutawney Phil with a robot! The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals wants organizers of Pennsylvania's Groundhog Day festival to ditch Phil for electronics, plastic and a little metal.
PETA doesn't like it. They say says it's "unfair to keep the animal in captivity and subject him to the huge crowds and bright lights that accompany the thousands of revelers each year," reports Tampa bay Online.
Organizers says they animal is treated better than most kids in Pennsylvania and claim PETA just wants publicity..." (source)
I think it bears repeating that I can't stand that PETA constantly negates the good that they do with these ridiculous crusades. We need groups that make sure dogs aren't having needles stuck into their eyes so vapid socialites won't tear up when they smather mascara all over their lashes. I am glad that PETA brought to light the disgustingly barbaric practices that make fur coats possible (the fakes are good enough to ensure another mink need not experience anal electrocution...)
...But when they start pontificating about the cruelty of owning a pet when most American dogs and cats probably get treated better than most 3rd world children...and complaining that a groundhog that pops out to cameras once a year now needs a SAG membership to make sure he isn't being mistreated... Ugh. They take 12 steps back for every two forward.