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[Originally posted Aug. 25, 1918]

A billboard touting PETA’s push to promote humane treatment of all living creatures, specifically crabs, was erected recently in Baltimore.

The billboard – that shows a picture of a crab with the words, “I’m me, not meat. See the individual. Go vegan” – appeared in the middle of the city’s Vegan Restaurant Week, but is directly related to the upcoming Baltimore Seafood Festival in September, said PETA spokeswoman Amber Canavan.

It would be hard to imagine a more ridiculous expenditure of advertising $$. Does PETA actually think they can dissuade the citizens of Baltimore from consuming their signature dish? Where does PETA get off trying to dictate to others what is acceptable and not acceptable for eating? So now they want us crying over our crab soup because of their conviction that “crabs have feelings too.” Why don’t they spend their efforts and dollars on more worthy causes — like the suffering of poor, innocent, unborn babies who are being murdered every day in this country?

Under OT dietary laws, it is true that lobster and crabs were forbidden to be eaten. (cf. Lev. 11:9-12)

Lobsters are nocturnal bottom walkers and scavengers that scavenge for dead animals and debris on the ocean floor – they are like the vultures of the oceans. Lobsters have even been seen burying dead fish and digging them up a little at a time to eat. Crabs will eat just about anything and are known as professional garbage hunters.

The Encyclopedia of Aquatic Life tells us that crabs, common shrimp and lobsters all feed off of dead and decaying matter. Therein lies their occupation — they were created to be the cleanup crew for the bottoms of lakes, rivers and oceans.

But the NT is equally clear that these dietary restrictions no longer apply. Instead, God has created everything good as long as it is eaten with thanksgiving and a good conscience:

1 Tim. 4:5 “For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, for it is made holy by the word of God and prayer.”

We are not supposed to allow others (e.g. PETA) to condemn our eating habits and restrict our freeedom in Christ. Certainly there is no argument in the scriptures based on “animals have feelings.” I say, “Pass the Old Bay!”