February 02, 2010
Chad Love: PETA's Robot Groundhog
By Chad Love
Well, it's Groundhog Day, and the world's only meteorologist with incisors that never stop growing apparently saw saw his shadow.
Thanks, tunnel rat. Now I've got six more weeks to wait around for fishing season to start. Hey Cabela's. Hey Bass Pro. The spring fishing catalogs would help pass the time. Get a move on.
Anyway, it seems PETA is concerned for Punxsutawney Phil's welfare. Surprise, surprise. In fact, they're so concerned for the obese little marmot's welfare that they want to replace him with a robot groundhog. No, I'm not making this up.
From the story:
The controversial animal-rights group -- which just a few months back asked the University of Georgia to replace its recently deceased bulldog mascot with a robotic one over concerns for a real dog's welfare -- is at it again. This time around, PETA's target is a seemingly innocuous band of revelers: The Punxsutawney Groundhog Club. Yup -- PETA wants to take Punxsutawney Phil away from Gobbler's Knob and give the little guy a dignified retirement at an animal sanctuary. In his place, you guessed it: A robot groundhog.
Gemma Vaughan, PETA's animals in entertainment specialist, fired off a letter to groundhog club president William Deeley this week, asking for his promise that the group will forgo the use of real rodents in future Groundhog Day celebrations. Little Phil, Vaughan wrote, is a pretty unhappy fellow, "forced to be on display year round at the local library and is denied the ability to prepare for and enter yearly hibernation." Groundhogs are typically shy creatures, Vaughan goes on to explain, and they can become easily upset when confronted by throngs of people, loud noises and camera flashes