PETA’s ‘Pope Condom’ Ad: Shameless Ploy or Valid Promotion?

Filed in Gather News Channel by on December 5, 2010 0 Comments

As if the misunderstood comments of Pope Benedict XVI regarding condom use weren’t controversial enough, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has decided to ride the coattails of religious debate by using the Pope’s opinion as part of their latest publicity campaign.

A doctored picture featuring the Pope tossing a condom to a crowd with the maxim “Dogs and Cats Can’t Use Condoms” is only one part of PETA’s latest “Pope Condom” campaign to address the animal overpopulation issue. An international tour of Roman Catholic institutions began in Europe where PETA members distributed leaflets comparing the Pope’s comments regarding the use of condoms amongst the HIV/AIDS population to spaying or neutering pets to control animal populations. PETA’s most recent press release announced that they will now be taking their religion-inspired agenda to the cathedrals and churches of the U.S.

PETA’s latest antics definitely succeed in drawing attention, but is their obvious piggybacking of a message from a religious leader just a funny publicity stunt or an insulting advertising ploy? The idea of linking a well-respected authority like the Pope to stemming the tide of unwanted pets definitely seems absurd. But you’ve got to hand it to PETA, by taking this uncertain route they are definitely sure to spark debate. Who knows? Maybe they’ll even manage to address the issue at hand: animal overpopulation.

Either PETA’s got some guts or a complete lack of respect for Catholicism. It makes you wonder what the Pope himself thinks about this usurpation of his message of moral obligation? Is this a legitimate advertising tactic or a shameless ploy?

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Just a scientist looking to make some extra cash for med school apps.

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