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Flashback: PETA Tried To Run This Ad Protesting Thanksgiving. NBC Said No Chance

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People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals tried to run a television ad in 2009 guilting meat eaters for consuming turkey on Thanksgiving, and NBC said no way.

PETA’s “Grace” ad featured a young girl joined by her family around a large table saying grace before eating the Thanksgiving meal.

The young girl delivered the blessing, saying, “Dear God, thank you for the turkey we’re about to eat. And for the turkey farms where they pack them into dark, tiny little sheds for their whole lives.”

“Thank you for when they burn their feathers off while they’re still alive, and for when turkey gets kicked around like a football, and killed by people who think it’s fun to stomp on their little turkey heads,” she continued, while her family looked around at one another in discomfort.

“And special thanks for the chemicals and dirt and poop that’s in the turkey we’re about to eat,” the girl said, meeting looks of horror.

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“Oh, and thank you for rainbows. Amen,” she concluded.

A written message then filled the screen: “This Thanksgiving, be thankful you’re not a turkey. Go vegan.”



The ad was set to run on NBC during Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in 2009, but the network refused to air the ad and demanded data backing up PETA’s claims about factory conditions, according to Creative Loafing Tampa Bay.

NBC then released a statement saying that “this commercial does not meet NBC Universal standards,” refusing to run the ad during the Nov. 26 parade.

Four NBC affiliates also refused to run the ad.

PETA member Jacek Prus spearheaded a protest against turkey consumption in November 2016, encouraging diners to go vegan.

The founder of Slow Food USA, Patrick Martins, wrote a November 2003 piece about the conditions in which turkeys are raised before they are killed. Farm-raised turkeys begin their lives in brooders, which are heated rooms that keep the turkeys warm, dry and safe from disease and predators, he wrote. The turkeys are then kept in close quarters so that they stay awake and continue eating, according to Martins.

PETA’s animal shelter killed 1,809 pets at its headquarters in Norfolk, Virginia, in 2017, according to a report given to the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The organization did not manage to get even 50 dogs adopted.

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PETA has killed 38,000 animals in the last 20 years.

“Despite being no more provocative than Super Bowl ads for burgers, six pro-vegan PETA ads have been banned from the big game over the years, and in 2009, NBC refused to air a PETA video featuring a little girl who tells it exactly like it is for the 44 million turkeys who are killed for holiday meals,” PETA Senior Vice President Lisa Lange told The Daily Caller News Foundation in an email Wednesday.

“But PETA places Thanksgiving ads every year, and the ones for the upcoming holiday have hit nearly a dozen cities, including Boston, Houston, and Los Angeles, with only one rejection, in Sacramento, California,” Lange added. 

NBC did not reply to TheDCNF’s request for comment.

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A version of this article appeared on The Daily Caller News Foundation website.

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