November 12th, 2010
07:25 PM ET

PETA wants Amazon to stop selling guides to dogfighting

PETA wants Amazon.com to stop selling books such as 'The Art of Cockfighting.'

The animal rights group PETA wants Amazon.com to stop selling books about dogfighting and cockfighting, saying the books encourage an illegal and harmful activity the way a recently removed title promoted pedophilia.

PETA said it sent a letter Friday to Amazon.com President Jeffrey P. Bezos, asking him to to pull products from the site that promote animal cruelty in light of the online retailer's decision this week to stop selling an e-book that offered guidelines to pedophilia.

"The Pedophile's Guide to Love and Pleasure" was pulled from Amazon.com late Wednesday, after thousands of angry users posted reviews to the listing condemning its publication and vowing to boycott the site.

PETA pointed out two books on Amazon.com, "The Art Of Cockfighting—A Handbook for Beginners and Old Timers" and "Dogs of Velvet and Steel," as examples of titles that encourage people to participate in illegal animal fighting.

"These books encourage people to become involved in dogfighting and cockfighting— cruel and illegal activities that are rampant across the country," PETA executive vice president Tracy Reiman said in the letter to Bezos.

"Animals, like children, depend on us to protect them and put their best interests above profits. Please, don't be complicit in cruelty to animals: Do the right thing and stop selling products that promote criminal violence against living beings."

PETA said the controversy over "The Pedophile's Guide" created the ideal climate for them to highlight animal fighting - an issue that's always on their radar.

"At a time when Amazon is coming out very publicly against books on pedophilia, this is a prime time for Amazon to step up and stop selling books that promote other illegal activity, like dogfighting and cockfighting," PETA spokeswoman Lindsey Rajt told CNN.

In fact, the two issues are "interconnected," Rajt said

"Animal abuse is one of the first warning signs we see in people who turn and direct violence toward people," she said. "This is really important because the twisted whims of people who enjoy watching animals fight to the death is not something Amazon should be catering to. There are greater societal implications."

Amazon.com did not return calls for comment.

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soundoff (494 Responses)
  1. Laura

    To MOM post: Why must it be people vs. animals. Can't it be both? Where's the diconnect?

    November 12, 2010 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Harold

    Do you know what PETA stands for????? "People for The Enjoyment of Tasty Animals

    November 12, 2010 at 8:15 pm | Report abuse |
  3. pete

    The writer has a right to publish the book. Amazon has the right to make a decision on selling it and PETA has a right to lobby them to pull it. What's the issue?

    November 12, 2010 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • LP

      Um, no, the "writer" didn't have that right. Free speech rights are not absolute- the Supreme Court has ruled n this before and that decision stands as of now. If your speech creates a danger to others, it can be legally curtailed.

      November 12, 2010 at 8:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • pete

      LP, true but I think these books are legally available.

      November 12, 2010 at 8:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Strange1

      Let's define "danger to others." Are we defining it as something that runs counter to what someone or some group deems unacceptable? What about cultural issues? I'm not particularly enamored of hip hop culture and actually find it offensive at times. Can we get that banned too? I tend to like fatty foods. Maybe someone who is decidedly more refined can solve my slovenly eating behaviors by imposing legal and social pressures on that particular predilection. I can't wait until Amazon puts out the ultimate guide to politically correct behavior and thought. I get it right away because it will be a huge tome and in order to live properly and make all the right decisions I'll need to start working on the first few thousand new commandments. Wait, ... I looked and can't find the author or an editor. How did this book get compiled? Surely truth has to be simple. The politically correct individuals seems to have such simple confidence about what is right and just.

      November 12, 2010 at 8:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jake

      Yes, actually, he has every right in the world to publish the book.

      You don't get to ignore the freedom of speech just because you disagree with what's being said.

      November 12, 2010 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jake

      Yes, legally curtailed. Not curtailed by mobs of idiots trying to have something removed from a website, and not curtailed by PETA, who is the NAACP of the animal world.

      November 15, 2010 at 9:33 am | Report abuse |
  4. merecat

    I've ordered from Amazon several times but wouldn't now that this has been brought to light. I guess they wish to make money at the expense of helpless animals.. Who knows what other trash they sell we don't know about.?!

    November 12, 2010 at 8:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lanfear

      you think that's bad, i've heard much worse about craigslist - i boycotted them eons ago.

      November 12, 2010 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Mario

    Good for PETA. Dog fighting books should be banned in the first place, they're disgusting and evil.

    November 12, 2010 at 8:18 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Lanfear

    I agree with PETA on this one.

    November 12, 2010 at 8:22 pm | Report abuse |
  7. HS

    Wherever PETA sees publicity and cash to bank upon, it'll go there. This time too, knowing the pedophile book news was getting huge popularity, it came to show its ugly head. I say BAN PETA!

    November 12, 2010 at 8:22 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Strange1

    Well, well.... I think we can see what Political Correctness is going to do to the 1st Amendment.

    November 12, 2010 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  9. shmoeusn

    Do you remember when the Catholic Church tried banning Dan Brown's "The Davinci Code"? It shot him all the way to the top of the NYT bestsellers list. Congrats people, you've just made this authors day! Try banning something worthwhile...like "The art of crying everytime you disagree with someone else" Its written by King James....check it out

    November 12, 2010 at 8:26 pm | Report abuse |
  10. NamVet

    PETA would object to selling copies of used McDonald's menus. Think I'll have a Big Mac with a chocolate shake.

    November 12, 2010 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      So you brush off activism against animal cruelty because you think some of PETA's views are silly... interesting reasoning....
      Have fun stuffing your face with burgers and shakes while others actually work to reduce suffering in the world. You'd think a "nam vet" would understand...

      November 12, 2010 at 9:04 pm | Report abuse |
  11. RIALgal

    Not selling a book is hardly the same as censorship or banning books. If Amazon discontinues the sale of this kind of book they are choosing not to sell instruction on how to do something (animal fighting) that is illegal. It is their choice. Personally I hope they quit selling that kind of thing. Unfortunately those who want to engage in such a cruel and illegal activity will find information somewhere else.

    November 12, 2010 at 8:30 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Jake

    Stupidity, plain and simple.

    Free speech, anyone?

    Look, I disagree with animal abuse. I have actually rehabilitated quite a few animals in my life – from rabbits to birds to dogs – but I think this is just asinine. Just because they stock a product does not mean that they, in ANY WAY, support said product or the subject that it caters to.

    When the book burning begins, it hardly ever ends where we want it to.

    November 12, 2010 at 8:34 pm | Report abuse |
  13. lolwut

    This is just like what happened in that one episode of South Park. (Cartoon Wars)

    November 12, 2010 at 8:44 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Jake

    I don't know how, but I blame Sarah Palin for this.

    November 12, 2010 at 8:44 pm | Report abuse |
  15. cajtri

    OK, I personally think that dog fighting and anything like that is horrible. So, I will choose to do the easy answer. Since I find it loathsome and hate it, I will simply not buy it. If they want to sell it....let them. No one is forcing you to purchase it. And before someone starts whining that children could get it, how the heck could a person under 18 order online unless a parent gave them a credit card, So that wouldn't be Amazons fault..it would be a lack of parental control.

    November 12, 2010 at 8:46 pm | Report abuse |
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