For Immediate Release:
May 18, 2023
Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382
New York – Fresh on the heels of the Young Ones Student Awards, which showcase students’ talents in creative studies, three local contestants—Emily “Emula” Aldin from the School of Visual Arts and Andrew Grechko and MJ Park of the Fashion Institute of Technology—are being crowned winners of PETA’s Choice Awards for their video entries championing animal rights. Students were asked to create ads that call attention to the abuse endured by animals used for clothing and that challenge speciesism, the human-supremacist belief that other animals exist for our benefit.
Aldin’s “All Pain Sounds the Same” shows what happens when a bassinet holding a baby “goat” is left in a Manhattan alleyway, emitting the sounds of a goat’s cries. Concerned New Yorkers come to the aid of the crying baby and have their speciesist beliefs challenged when they find out that the sound is coming from a kid—just not a human one.
Viewers’ expectations and biases are also exposed in “Animals Anonymous” by Grechko and Park, which shows a man in a puffer jacket while a voiceover shares a harrowing story about enduring unjust imprisonment and torment. Except the story isn’t the man’s at all—it’s that of a bird who was subjected to live-plucking and exploited for the feathers in the man’s coat. Continuing the theme, a second video zooms in on a woman’s face while a voice explains how terrifying it was to be kidnapped, stripped, and doused with chemicals. But it isn’t the woman’s story—it belongs to a rabbit who was experimented on to make the cosmetics she’s wearing.
“These winning videos reveal the plight of animals whose cries go unheard, including when they’re abused and killed for coats, lipstick, and other human whims,” says PETA Senior Director Danielle Katz. “With the help of these creative design students, PETA is reminding everyone to use their talents to speak out against speciesism.”
Other concepts recognized by PETA include “Every Baby Has a Mother,” “Love Is Human,” and “Lil’ Luxury Lucy” by Brigham Young University’s AdLab in Provo, Utah; “Everyone Has a Mom” by students from the University of Oregon in Eugene, Oregon; and “No Escape” by students from the College for Creative Studies in Detroit.
PETA’s motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear or abuse in any other way.” For more information, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.