Press Release

The Fifth Annual “Tarnished Halo” Awards

Washington, DC – If this weekend’s Golden Globes don’t quite satisfy your award-show cravings, then the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) is here to help. Today CCF announced the winners of its 2005 “Tarnished Halo” awards. These prizes are given annually to America’s most notorious animal-rights zealots, celebrity busybodies, environmental scaremongers, self-appointed “public interest” advocates, trial lawyers, and other food activists who claim to know “what’s best for you.”

Though the “Tarnished Halo” doesn’t feature a red carpet ceremony, it does shine the spotlight on the year’s best (of the worst). People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and the assassination-endorsing physician Jerry Vlasak took home awards. So did “dietary crusaders” like Yale professor Kelly Brownell and the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). California Attorney General Bill Lockyer, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., and the Chicago Tribune were also “honored,” and are listed with all the “winners” at Awards for 2005 included:

“If an Old Dog Won’t Learn New Tricks, Inject It with Lethal Drugs” Award
Given to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) for the combined 42 felony animal-cruelty charges brought against two PETA employees. Adria Hinkle and Andrew Cook allegedly killed dozens of dogs, puppies, and kittens in the back of a PETA-owned van, less than an hour after promising to find them good homes. Police say they saw Hinkle and Cook tossing the dead animals into a trash dumpster.

“First Thing We Do, Let’s Kill All The Doctors” Award
Given to Dr. Jerry Vlasak, a California trauma surgeon who advocates the “political assassination” of medical researchers whose search for AIDS and cancer cures requires the use of lab rats. When asked during a U.S. Senate eco-terrorism hearing in October if he was indeed advocating murder, Vlasak insisted that killing other doctors “would be a morally justifiable solution” — adding later: “These are not innocent lives.”

“Talk Out of One Side, Eat with Other” Award
Given to California Attorney General Bill Lockyer, for spreading needless fears about a food that he eats. Lockyer has made it a goal to push warning labels frightening Californians out of eating foods containing trace amounts of a chemical called acrylamide. Science suggests that people can eat their weight in an acrylamide-containing food (such as bread, olives, or French fries) — every day, for life — without putting their health at risk. Still, Lockyer has bravely vowed to go on eating fries, regardless of his own fear mongering.

Founded in 1996, the Center for Consumer Freedom is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization devoted to promoting personal responsibility and protecting consumer choices. For more information, visit


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