Yes, clearly People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has discovered the vast untapped potential of marketing sex to promote animal rights. But just in case you can't see the inherent connection between the two (Are you crazy?), let's take a moment to explore PETA's logic.
In PETA's new 30 second advertisement, Alicia Silverstone takes it all off. Slowly lifting herself out of a refreshing pool, water sensuously pours off her sculpted bare body.
Lavishing come-hither glances at the camera, she purrs, "I'm Alicia Silverstone, and I'm a vegetarian. There's nothing in the world that's changed me as much as this. I feel so much better and have so much more energy. It's so amazing."
That's great, Alicia. I'm really happy for you. But could you please tell me why you are naked?
I too enjoy vegetables. I've flirted with becoming a vegetarian, in a discreet and lady-like manner fully clothed, I might add.
I care about animals. I like to be healthy. But must I also lose all of my clothing to do so?
After all, it gets awfully cold here in the wintertime, and I dislike frostbite.
As joyful as I am about dear Alicia finally discovering the secret to healthy living and her willingness to share her revelation with the world, I wonder about the implications of this undoubtedly suggestive first-ever naked veggie testimonial.
PETA tells us that not only should we protect the animals, we should also benefit ourselves.
Through vegetarianism, we can become full of life and sexually potent; which dare I say, both lead to a steamy romp in the bedroom. Should we allow ourselves to be so blatantly convinced with this ridiculously over-the-top sexual innuendo?
Here is the logical connection between going "Veg" and sex: A) Girl sees a cuddly little duck and decides she never wants to be responsible for the suffering of another animal life. B) She not only feels morally satisfied, but becomes instantaneously healthy and radiantly beautiful. C) She then miraculously morphs into a gorgeously toned blonde pool-side siren. No exercise required. D) Girl becomes much lusted-after sexual object. Isn't she hot?
So we see that A necessarily leads to D, which leads us to infer that vegetables do indeed equal sex.
Truly, this ad can only appeal to male fantasy, girls who so desperately want to be desirable that they have lost their self-respect and perhaps to the dedicated fans of Silverstone's exceptionally obscure fan club.
I would argue that this testimonial goes so far as to ridicule one's moral decision to become a vegetarian with derisively sexual undertones.
So why do people choose to forgo meat?
Vegetarians cite a multitude of reasons, including the merciless and inhumane killing of animals, deforestation for the sake of cattle-grazing, the reduction of the world's food shortage and numerous health factors including the fat and hormones lurking in meats.
Among these many valid reasons, I think it wounds vegetarian idealism to focus solely, as this ad does, on the most superficial element of its health benefits.
It is commendable to choose vegetarianism. However, when I showed this film clip to some male friends of mine (who were all very enthusiastic) they said they only watched because Alicia was naked.
And truly, I don't want people to become vegetarians just because they think Alicia Silverstone is hot - - it would just give a bad name to vegetarians everywhere.
Imagine all of the mocking potential to be gleaned from just this advertisement.
And hey, if this ad does make you want to become a vegetarian, the good news is that you will no longer have to struggle with what to wear tomorrow; you can go au naturel.