Green Room

PETA: Shame on Christie for killing that spider; Update PETA responds

posted at 8:50 am on May 4, 2013 by

Yesterday, Governor Chris Christie personally executed an offender — and what’s worse, he did it in front of a roomful of children!  Before we get too hysterical, though, this was an eight-legged offender, and the kids seem something less than traumatized (via JD Mullane):

The kids are all right, but a few of the adults have their knickers in a twist over Christie’s knuckle sandwich. PETA took the opportunity to scold Christie for not understanding the spider’s worth.

No, really:

On Friday, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie posted a video showing him smashing a spider on his desk in front of a group of visiting school children. In a statement provided to TPM, Ingrid Newkirk, president of People For The Ethical Treatment of Animals, described Christie’s killing of the spider as a thoughtless act.

“He probably did it without thinking. Some people put the spider outside, but spiders are often scary to people, and that can prevent them from pondering their worth,” Newkirk said.

I think this is a demonstration of PETA’s worth, actually.

Update, 5/7 16:17 pm ET: As if this wasn’t petty enough, PETA sent me this note via e-mail just a few minutes ago, while I was on the air:

Dear Ed,

I’m writing on PETA’s behalf regarding  your coverage of Gov. Christie and the spider. While you included our statement in your article, the statement that PETA “took the opportunity to scold” the governor, as well as the title “PETA: Shame on Christie,” are false and need to be corrected.

The media called us and asked us for our take on the incident, and our statement in its entirety reads: “He probably did it without thinking. Some people put the spider outside, but spiders are often scary to people, and that can prevent them from pondering their worth.” That’s our statement, and as you can see, we’re not “scolding” or saying “shame on” anyone.

Will you please set the record straight as soon as possible so that your readers do not get an unfair impression of PETA’s position? I would be happy to answer any further questions that you might have.

Thank you in advance for your prompt attention to this matter.

Best regards,

[name withheld out of overweening pity on my part]

To be clear, I didn’t put quote marks in the headline because I wasn’t quoting PETA — I was characterizing their response as a function of writing an opinion piece about their silly, publicity-seeking complaint.  Most people who bother to read this site would understand that, and the rest would know it if they followed the link I included or read the excerpt, which had PETA’s full response in it. I apologize if PETA couldn’t grasp that.

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