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HSUS or PETA: Which Anti-Hunting Extremist Organization is Worse?

HSUS or PETA: Which Anti-Hunting Extremist Organization is Worse?

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) are two groups with essentially the same agenda: total animal “liberation.” Despite the organizations’ compassionate-sounding names—and the confusion between HSUS and local humane societies that actually run pet shelters across America—both groups are radical. The difference?  PETA operates in a bold, in-your-face, aggressive manner while the HSUS is more strategic.

HSUS CEO Wayne Pacelle said, “We are going to use the ballot box and the democratic process to stop all hunting in the United States… We will take it species by species until all hunting is stopped in California. Then we will take it state by state.” And it has. HSUS works to pass laws restricting both hunting means and the ammunition that can be used. The goal? Make it harder—and more expensive—to hunt. While Pacelle made these comments on Dec. 30, 1991, as executive director of the anti-hunting group Fund for Animals (FFA), they show how long the anti-hunting campaign has worked to exterminate all hunting. (In 2004, FFA merged with HSUS under the HSUS umbrella and, Pacelle’s leadership, went on to merge with several more “animal welfare” groups to expand its reach.)

HSUS urges Americans to adopt “meatless Monday” and give up meat one day a week. As recently as June 2016 it failed in attempts to get a law passed that would have instituted meatless Mondays in all U.S. military cafeterias. HSUS lobbies to ban certain production methods in pork, and attacks large meat producers but claims to support smaller “humane” farmers. However, HSUS has invested donor money in the fake-meat startup Beyond Meat and maintains a vegan-only policy for its events, refusing to serve meat regardless of how it is produced. While HSUS may address the humane treatment of animals, it is a shield to hide its real agenda: no humane use of animals, not just as a food source, but as pets, livestock, circus animals, etc.

HSUS proposes what some consider modest “reforms” on other fronts. Once enacted, the group simply returns with new “reforms.” Take these four examples:
  • Eggs
    HSUS has pushed for laws and corporate policies mandating cage-free eggs yet is on the record as saying, "Anyone who says that cage-free is 100 percent humane, 100 percent cruelty-free, just know that's not accurate." HSUS is now targeting the cage-free system. Expect "Free-range" eggs to become the new ideal.
  • Circuses
    HSUS worked to remove elephants from circuses, generally by lobbying at the local level to ban elephant-handling tools. Now PETA is in Los Angeles pushing for a ban on all animals in the circus. As for HSUS, it backs animal-free circuses.
  • Pets
    HSUS works to restrict the sale of pets across America, including laws that restrict pedigree dog breeding and laws prohibiting pet stores from selling pets from professional breeders. HSUS’s own research shows that there are 17 million Americans looking to get a pet every year, whereas less than 8 million pets enter shelters every year—and many of the animals put down in shelters are pit bulls as reported here. HSUS is restricting consumer choices for pets and reducing the future supply of pets. The reason it seeks to end pedigree-dog breeding is because reducing the population of a given canine species hopefully will lead to its extinction.  HSUS may promote adopting pets from animal shelters, but it maintains a position—like PETA—that pets are nothing more than slaves of human beings. HSUS seeks the extinction of all domestic animal species in step with PETA. Case in point: During the PETA scandal in Norfolk, Va., in 2012, the group put to death scores of animals in animal shelters.
  • Marine Parks and Aquariums
    HSUS announced a partnership with SeaWorld in March. The agreement: SeaWorld gives up its orca shows and retires the orcas, and HSUS stops its attacks on SeaWorld. HSUS indicated this was merely its first demand, stating, “This is the beginning of discussions with SeaWorld—not the end.” For now, SeaWorld still has dolphins.

Words from the Watchdog
The Center for Consumer Freedom operates specifically to keep an eye on the HSUS—which continues to scam Americans out of millions of dollars through manipulative and deceptive fundraising—PETA and other like-minded extremist groups. Visit for more details.