Sacto 9-1-1
June 23, 2011
Sacramento microwaved baby case inspires PETA billboard


By Kim Minugh

Quick to exploit the recent tragedy of a Sacramento infant allegedly killed in a microwave by her mother is PETA.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is negotiating with outdoor advertisers in Sacramento to erect a billboard inspired by the March 17 death of 7-week-old Mirabelle Thao-Lo, according to a news release PETA sent to The Bee.

The billboard features a photo of a person sticking a raw pork chop into a microwave, juxtaposed against a photo of a mother pig and her piglet. Between the two photos is the message "Everybody's Somebody's Baby. Go Vegan."

"The billboard serves to remind people that the vast majority of animals killed for human consumption are just babies who have yet to see their first birthday," the news release states.

Police allege Mirabelle died of thermal burns after her mother, 29-year-old Ka Yang, put her in a microwave. Yang, who police arrested earlier this week, is scheduled to be arraigned today on suspicion of murder and assault resulting in the death of a child under the age of 8.

PETA Founder Ingrid E. Newkirk became a vegetarian after she rescued a baby pig during a farm cruelty case, according to the news release.

"We're horrified at the thought of microwaving a helpless baby and hope that this billboard will open hearts and minds to the grief of other mothers who have their babies torn away from them simply to satisfy humans' fleeting taste sensations," Newkirk is quoted as saying in the news release. "All infants, not just our own, deserve protection, and pigs, like cows and other animals, mourn the loss of their young when they are taken away to be eaten."

PETA's release goes on to say that chickens are typically 7 weeks old - and pigs and turkeys are typically 6 months old - when they are killed on industrialized factory farms. Calves raised for veal often are taken from their mothers within hours of their birth and confined in crates for up to 16 weeks before they are killed.

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