Things must be getting pretty desperate over at the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM). The fringe animal rights group has made quite a name for itself by playing doctor, giving out bum nutrition advice, and discouraging Americans from donating to their favorite cancer charities. And just when we thought the faux medical charity couldn’t stoop any lower than openly advocating strict vegan diets for children — with no caveats or special instructions — opinion page readers across the country were struck with an op-ed capitalizing on the recent death of a former White House press secretary for political gain:
As a two-time cancer survivor, I would love to see Tony Snow’s tragic death last week help raise awareness about colorectal cancer. The former White House press secretary was just three years younger than me and I know all too well how tough his battle was. Sadly, it’s one that 50,000 Americans lose each year.
No one in his right mind would disagree that cancer awareness is an important issue. And how timely of PCRM to mention Tony Snow, since his funeral wasn’t even until the next day.
When famous people like Snow or journalist Tim Russert pass away, their deaths often inspire news coverage about their particular disease. That’s good because it helps educate the public. Unfortunately, the articles often focus on early detection or the latest treatments.
Whoa! Now wait just a minute. The Snow- and Russert-inspired news coverage of early cancer detection and groundbreaking treatments is “unfortunate”? What, then, should the media be discussing in light of this tragic news?
Processed meats. We’re not making this up.
Food manufacturers and their lobbyists like to pretend that even the most unhealthful foods – like hot dogs, bacon and other processed meats – are OK in moderation. And anyone with a pepperoni addiction likes to pretend that jogging three miles a day will keep them healthy…
Processed meats aren’t the only unsafe foods – no animal products are good for us. They increase our risk of diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and numerous other conditions…
So, if there’s one thing you can do to help keep your family healthy, it’s to think about replacing meats with healthier choices. Then, the next time you see a headline about a favorite newscaster or politician who’s succumbed to cancer, you’ll know you’re doing the best you can do.
This crass, offensive, opportunistic piece of anti-meat propaganda actually ran in a number of McClatchy-Tribune newspapers last week. And we’ve sent a letter to every single one.
Any epidemiologist can tell you how irresponsible and arbitrary it is to focus on just one food in these important public health discussions. For instance, eating tofu has recently been found to increase dementia. But would PCRM consider that a compelling reason not to go vegetarian?
There’s no room in our public discourse for activists who use phony food scares and real human suffering to promote their agendas. Using the late Tony Snow as a political football before his family even had a chance to mourn him was callous, inhuman, and (sadly) just what we’ve come to expect from the animal rights movement.
We would say "shame on PCRM," but it’s clear that shame is a social emotion the group utterly lacks.