Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport has removed ads for notorious and extreme animals rights activist group PETA upon completion of the campaign, after complaints from the public and the airport itself objected that the ads were unfairly taking aim at Montana’s economy driving industry and demeaning local farmers and ranchers.
The airport shared in a statement yesterday that they had to allow them on legal grounds, but soon after changed their policies to avoid being forced to broadcast them in the future:
PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) is well known for its cheeky and frequently idiotic, attention-grabbing campaigns. They were in the news just a few months ago after they launched a broadside attack against Major League Baseball, tweeting out: “Bullpen” refers to the area of a “bull’s pen” where bulls are held before they are slaughtered—it’s a word with speciesist roots & we can do better than that. Switching to “arm barn” would be a home run for baseball fans, players, and animals.’
In this case, they put these signs on nearly every luggage cart.
One complainant was the proprietors at the Green Mountain Red Angus (GMRA), a multi-generational ranch that specializes in selling and breeding Red Angus cattle. He wrote in a highly shared and commented post:
“I challenge you, BZN, to really put some thought into how you want your image to be perceived by the public of Montana, whether by locals or visitors. Montanans are proud of their agricultural heritage and still-current status as ‘Cowboy Country.’ According to the 2020 Census, there are now over 1 million human residents in Montana: however, there are over 3.9 million cattle residents. Yep, almost 4 times more cows than people!
…This is Montana! These are the people that utilize your airport and proudly call Montana home! And quite frankly, I think our cows are proud to call Montana home too! Let’s support our local industries and not pander to, or be swayed by, outside money interests. The fact that you allow an organization to infer that our cattle are nothing more than ‘bags on legs’ is insulting. I have never viewed my cattle in such a crass manner and I’m willing to bet no other rancher in Montana has either. Please consider keeping your projected image true to Montana and the people that support your airport!”
Luckily, the contract soon expired. GMRA was put in contact with the General Manager of the Bozeman Airport, who said that the ad was never approved by management or the board, but rather was allowed due to a contractual obligation soon rectified. They were able to change their policies after this nasty little experience and going forward will have the prerogative to decline any further advertisements of this nature. The email to GMRA in part reads:
“So you understand the background, We initially rejected the advertisement but upon review by legal counsel of our policy at the time, it was in the best interest of the airport as a public agency to allow the advertisement to run in order to avoid potential legal fees. The policy has since been revised to prohibit this type of advertisement and these ads are no longer at the airport.”
If PETA wishes to main even a veneer of relevancy, they would do best to focus their attentions on exposing monkeys getting tortured and dogs getting chemical solutions poured into their eyes and open wounds in order test a new kind of shampoo, rather than honest ranchers killing cows for meat and then utilizing all available byproducts afterward.