• Mon, Mar 24 - 3:30 pm ET

PETA Tactfully Equates Buying Women’s Shoes To Beating Monkeys With Hammers

peta's sexist emoji ad

No one’s ever accused PETA of being reasonable in their ads, and they have a long history of using misogyny in misguided attempts to convince people to go vegetarian. We’ve seen them sexualize underage models in the name of animal rights, we’ve seen them use pictures of women’s “unattractive” pubic hair as part of their anti-fur campaign, and we’ve seen them inexplicably put Courtney Stodden on a red carpet wearing nothing but lettuce leaves. What are they up to lately? More of the same old sexist BS… but this time it’s possibly worse.

PETA’s latest ad, which is made up entirely of emojis, dares to say what no one else has the balls to say: that women are vain, self-centered morons who only care about shoes. Groundbreaking!

Set to dramatic piano music, we see an emoji lady daydreaming about those things all women daydream about. A green dress, a high-heeled shoe, a purse, lipstick, a boot, stars (?), wearing a crown. Then, in a crazy twist of events, her thoughts start to change. She starts daydreaming about GUNS and TIGERS. Knives, bunnies, syringes, monkeys, hammers, and SCULLS. Her teeny tiny stupid woman brain, once preoccupied with shoes and crowns, suddenly realizes that for every green dress she buys, at least one monkey gets hit with a hammer. To really bring the message home, a text bubble pops up that declares, “The cruelty animals suffer for our vanity is beyond words.”

Here’s the thing, PETA. Lots of women care deeply about animal cruelty, and there are tons of resources online that give actual, practical advice to people who are seeking to purchase beauty products and clothes that don’t use animal products or contribute to animal testing. We’ve published lists of vegan products we love, we’ve made guides for purchasing fair trade and cruelty-free holiday gifts, and we’ve given major props to retailers that prioritize animal rights. It’s really easy to fight back against animal cruelty without resorting to worthless sexism in your ads. It’s possible to promote one cause without setting another one back 20 years.

If your goal is to convince women– the people who buy most beauty products, shoes, and handbags– to care about the materials that make up the goods they purchase, you should probably start treating women respectfully. I know that sounds crazy, but it’s worth a shot.

Via Pop Culture Media on YouTube

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  • Kaitlin Reilly

    I think that this is one of those ads that is trying so hard to be clever that the entire message gets lost. They don’t say why or how these products hurt animals — they just shame women for shopping, because apparently, all women do is shop and put on makeup and hit monkeys with hammers(?). They don’t give any vegan alternatives to the products, which might have made a better point.

    • Molly

      That’s the point of the text alert, Kaitlin. If you sign up, you receive regular tips on how and where to buy cruelty-free fashion. I’m not sure if would have been effective if they crammed all of that information into a 30 sec PSA. And I didn’t see any shaming in the piece whatsoever.

  • Lindsey Conklin

    really not appreciating the stereotype, PETA.

  • gothicgaelicgirl

    *SKULL
    NOT “scull”!

  • Molly

    Oh brother, the writer of this article (and the commenters below for that matter) need to get over themselves! So much whining and complaining. This ad is clever and it’s powerful. It’s not at all shaming anyone for wanting to buy things, and it’s not saying women are just mindless consumers.The message of the ad is that innocent animals are tortured and killed for beauty and fashion every day – so if you sign up for PETA’s text alerts, you’ll get tips on how and where to buy cruelty-free fashion. The message was pretty clear – I got it right away. And I thought it was great. And as for PETA’s “sexy” ads – all of those women volunteered and were excited to pose and feel beautiful and promote a good cause. So what is the problem?! You should be whining and complaining (or better yet — doing something about) the issues that PETA is trying to fight… animals being needlessly tortured and killed. Stop killing the messenger.