HSUS'S BENEFICIAL RELATIONSHIP WITH THE MEDIA
Often when a person hears about unethical behavior from animal rights organizations for the first time, he or she has questions. Questions like, why isn’t the mainstream media the one enlightening them to this animal rights corruption? And why isn’t more being done to show American citizens that the money they are giving to organizations like HSUS and PETA is not truly helping animals?
Those questions are easy to answer when you spend enough time investigating.
Imagine an individual. This person is dressed nicely and appears pleasant, but something seems off. Then you find out he or she took money from unaware individuals and placed that money in hedge funds in the Cayman Islands to avoid high U.S. taxes. In the past this person has been accused of racketeering, and has links to individuals from violent and destructive organizations.
Now imagine this person going on trial. The media would go nuts! Defense lawyers would pass on juror after juror, scared to death of conviction by the media. Although the crimes described above are real, it isn’t a real individual. It is an organization, more specifically an animal rights organization. Instead of conviction by the media, it’s more a lack of conviction all together.
Malcolm X once said something very interesting about the media:
“The media's the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses.”
When it comes to animal rights organizations, like the deceptively named “Humane
” Society of the United States, many media outlets are making the guilty seem innocent.
The media thinks of themselves as protectors of society. An organization like HSUS, which had its charity rating revoked and a donor advisory warning placed against them by Charity Navigator, is exactly what the media has a long history of fighting against: big business. It’s more about the money than the animals; the animals just provide the adorable faces through which HSUS can squeeze money out of donors. They do or have done all of the things mentioned above, and much more. So is it not hypocritical of some in the media to protect them as they do? Absolutely.
When it comes to these kinds of animal rights groups and ‘charity’ organizations, only two things are undeniably clear:
1) They are corrupt
In 2012, HSUS had over $125 million in donations; $42 million went to salaries, $44.3 million to fundraising. With this in mind some might be thinking that 1/3rd of the revenue is left to go to animals, right? NOPE, about 1% of their total revenue actually goes to animals. They have to spend the rest on things like $26 million in ‘investments’ in the Cayman Islands, $15.75 million paid out in a RICO settlement for racketeering and an undisclosed amount on lobbying efforts in Washington D.C. They even spent some of the money that was supposed to go to animals on progressing issues like gun control.
They have a long history of corrupt solicitation practices, especially in the wake of natural disasters. For example, they were investigated for claims made in advertisements after Hurricane Katrina that raised them over $34.6 million
, only $18 million of which was actually spent for cleanup and help for the victims of the disaster (the investigation into the other money was dropped under questionable circumstances). The same thing happened after Hurricane Sandy, and after the Moore Tornado in Oklahoma. The attorney general of Oklahoma, Scott Pruitt, investigated these deceptive fundraising tactics and HSUS sued the state of Oklahoma in order to halt the investigation.
Their money raising trickery goes far beyond the exploitation of natural disasters, they also use the neglected animals that they do not help so that they can mislead the public and raise even more.
Each year, according to HSUS statistics, 2.4 million healthy and adoptable pets are put down. With a revenue stream of well over $100 million a year, some may wonder why HSUS hasn’t stepped in to help these animals find homes and survive.
Their agenda is based on vegan activism and the end of domesticated animals, and the lines they are willing to cross to obtain that agenda suggest certain sociopathic tendencies. Some in the media have allowed their sense of entitlement and have encouraged this agenda.
This brings us to the second undisputable fact: Many mainstream media outlets side with animal rights organizations, often perpetuating the negative consequences they have on society.
The media can often underplay or flat out ignore HSUS corruption, which leads to confusion for many in America. Now, we have a misinformed public which just makes it easier for animal rights organizations to raise money despite an almost complete ignorance of animal care.
For example, we look to legislation recently passed in Missouri, the Right to Farm Amendment. This was a simple improvement to the state constitution that would protect the rights of the people to farm and ranch in the state. Yet, a majority of media outlets sided with the radical animal rights organization on the issue. Only one media editorial supported the amendment that over half of Missourians supported.
Doesn’t that seem a little disproportionate? The media and these radical groups tried their hardest to manipulate voters, and they almost succeeded (the Right to Farm amendment narrowly passed despite enormous initial support).
We can also easily see the unofficial endorsement of these organizations by web search engines. For example, if you were to Google search HSUS, a few of the links are bound to have the label “HSUS News.” This is another example of the importance bestowed on them by the media. In no way are they a legitimate news source. They run a blog, just like this one. This endorsement is giving them a false legitimacy and helping to further increase public ignorance to the group’s true nature.
Then, we must consider the substantial lack of reporting. For instance, most HSUS contributors do not realize that they give less than 1% of their total revenue to local animal shelters. These people hear Humane Society and associate it with the organization down the street where they found and saved their current domestic pet, and the media doesn’t correct them. Many HSUS donors do not know of the aforementioned corruption or even that HSUS almost completely ignores shelters. That is the distinct negative consequence of the media underreporting on animal rights corruption.
The reasoning behind such media support, however, is not nearly as clear as the corruption. Do these media outlets not want to face the wrath of such an organization for reporting against it? Perhaps it is willful ignorance, perhaps something else entirely. Either way, the media is acting as a marionette for these organizations, bending to their will.
In the current age we have tools to fight back. We have our own form of media: social media. With enough supporters we really can make an impact. Will you act as the voice farmers, ranchers, hunters, and animals need? Will you stand up against the radical animal rights corruption and those in the media that perpetuate unethical behavior and suffering