By Doug Draper
If you have an ad promoting vegetarianism over eating meat, good luck getting it run – at least on the sides or the back of a St. Catharines Transit bus.
Niagara Action for Animals, a long-time, not-for-profit organization in the region, advocating for more humane treatment of animals of the non-human kind, had their luck run out with a rejection from the St. Catharines Transit Commission this January to run an ad asking anyone who might have seen a series of their ads why they might love a dog or cat more than a pig or a chicken or a cow.
“Our intentions were to ask people to think critically about this issue,” Kimberly Costello, a spokesperson for Niagara Action for Animals (NAFA) told Niagara At Large. “Most people would be abhorred to think of their pet being genetically modified, intensively confined, mutilated, neglected, and brutally slaughtered, yet we seem to think it is okay when these acts are committed against equally sentient animals, such as cows, pigs and chickens.
But so much for that.
David Sherlock, general manager of the St. Catharines Transit Commission, exercised the veto authority he has to keep the ads from being displayed on the city’s buses. Any ad that may be “controversial” or “that takes a position that could be considered by the public to be politically sensitive…is something we don’t want on our buses,” he said.
“Our buses are public property,” said Sherlock” and we exercised our right to not place (the NAFA ads) on our publicly funded buses.” Costello, on the other hand, thought the ads “would be a great campaign to do in Niagara,” and wondered why, when there are no graphic or violent pictures in the ads, and why, they would be rejected.
Niagara At Large wants to put that same question to St. Catharines Mayor Brian McMullan, but so far he has been unavailable for comment. We also want to put that question to you. How do you feel about these ads appearing on transit buses. Share year views on this topic in the comment boxes below.
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