Photo via Change, Inc.
Ingenious act of head turning activism, or wacko publicity stunt gone too far? You decide. Ingrid Newkirk, the president of PETA, has fashioned a will stipulating that upon her death, her body is to be donated to the infamous animal rights org. And she's written up a bizarre list of instructions on what they're to do with each of her body parts after she's deceased. Just a warning to the squeamish—this gets weird.Newkirk has written in her will that her body is to be used by PETA "in a manner that draws attention to needless animal suffering and exploitation." And while the org retains the right to use her body in any way, she's outlined a detailed list of suggestions. They range from macabre to downright grotesque.
The Bizarre Will of Ingrid Newkirk
Here's an abridged list of Newkirk's directions for PETA to follow with her body:
a. That the "meat" of my body, or a portion thereof, be used for a human barbecue, to remind the world that the meat of a corpse is all flesh, regardless of whether it comes from a human being or another animal, and that flesh foods are not needed
Will does not specify who is to be served at the event, or whether there shall be beach volleyball.
b. That my skin, or a portion thereof, be removed and made into leather products, such as purses, to remind the world that human skin and the skin of other animals is the same and that neither is "fabric" nor needed.
c. my feet be removed and umbrella stands or other ornamentation be made from them, as a reminder of the depravity of killing innocent animals, such as elephants, in order that we might use their body parts for household items and decorations;
Got to give Newkirk credit for creativity for that one—umbrella stands? However, from here on out, things take a turn for the worse . . .
d.That one of my eyes be removed, mounted, and delivered to the administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as a reminder that PETA will continue to be watching the agency until it stops poisoning and torturing animals.
(The other one is to be used however PETA sees fit)
e. That my pointing finger be delivered to Kenneth Feld, owner of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, or to a circus museum to stand as the "Greatest Accusation on Earth" on behalf of the countless elephants, lions, tigers, bears, and other animals who have been kidnapped from their families and removed from their homelands
Image via PETA
Bringing the Weird Worldwide
And here's where she starts going international:
f. That my liver be vacuum-packed and shipped, in whole or in part, to France, to there be used in a public appeal to persuade shoppers not to support the vile practice of force-feeding geese and ducks for foie gras
g. That one of my ears be removed, mounted, and sent to the Canadian Parliament to assist them in hearing, for the first time perhaps, the screams of the seals, bears, raccoons, foxes, and minks bludgeoned, trapped, and sometimes skinned alive for their pelts.
The other goes to Mumbai on the same principle, for cattle instead. And it's not all gloom and doom here—nope, she's also planning on executing the weirdest morale booster ever:
h. That one of my thumbs be removed, mounted upwards on a plaque, and sent to the person or institution that, in the year of my death or thereabouts, PETA decides has done the most to promote alternatives to the use and abuse of animals in any area of their exploitation
A never-ending thumbs up! Nothing odd about that, right?
i. That one of my thumbs be mounted in a downward position and sent to the person or institution that, in the year of my death or thereabouts, has gone against the changing tide of societal opinion and frightened and hurt animals in some egregious manner
Punked. Sort of. I guess.
j. That a little part of my heart be buried near the racetrack at Hockenheim, preferably near the Ferrari pits, where Michael Shumacher raced in and won the German Grand Prix
Sometimes it's hard to determine whether she's a courageous animal rights crusader or more like that tyrannical king who shipped William Wallace's body parts across England after he was executed to scare the hell out of people at the end of Braveheart. Far cry from nice programs encouraging vegetarianism.
So what do you think? Brave, creative activism? It could after all generate a ton of attention for the animal rights movement. Or is Newkirk simply off the deep end? She could also alienate tons of people from the same movement she's literally giving her body to promote.
Read the rest of the will, which also contains legal advice on how best to accomplish these deeds, over at PETA's blog.