AIDS Activists Target Charlize Theron & PeTA

ACT UP!, AIDS Healthcare Foundation, More Than 20 AIDS Activists

Unveil Campaign Targeting Hypocrisy of Hollywood Stars:

'You Cannot Wear an AIDS ribbon and Call Yourself a PeTA Supporter'

Sep 08, 2005, 01:00 ET from Patient Advocates Against PeTA

    LOS ANGELES, Sept. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Two days before People For the
 Ethical Treatment of Animals (PeTA) holds its 25th anniversary gala at
 Paramount Studios in Hollywood, a coalition of AIDS activists has attacked the
 group for impeding the fight for a cure to AIDS and other devastating
     In a letter to PeTA spokesperson Charlize Theron, ACT UP!, the AIDS
 Healthcare Foundation, and numerous other AIDS activists and advocacy groups
 demanded that Theron set an example for other celebrity endorsers of PeTA and
 withdraw her support for the radical organization.
     PeTA which publicly advocates a total ban on animal testing -- even if it
 means a cure to diseases such as diabetes or AIDS -- has actively courted
 Hollywood stars to promote its benevolent image and to fill its $25 million a
 year coffers.
     According to coalition organizer Genevieve Clavreul, "You cannot wear an
 AIDS ribbon and call yourself a PeTA supporter.  It is an insult to the 37
 million people living with HIV/AIDS and it is an insult to the memory of the
 20 million people who have died from this terrible disease."
     With the release of the letter to Charlize Theron, Patient Advocates
 Against PeTA is kicking off a campaign targeting Hollywood celebrities,
 calling them to account for their high profile role in hindering the search
 for a cure to AIDS and other incurable diseases.
     The following is a copy of the letter from Patient Advocates Against PeTA
 to Charlize Theron, dated September 7, 2005:
     As a world-famous actress who sets an example for people across the globe,
 we, the undersigned advocates of a cure for AIDS, oppose your endorsement of
 PeTA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals)
     PeTA opposes AIDS research that requires the study of lab animals. PeTA's
 President Ingrid Newkirk once said even if animal research produced a cure for
 AIDS, "we'd be against it."
     We agree with you that animals should be treated with compassion, and we
 applaud your efforts to advance animal welfare.  However, we value human life
 as well. Humane, responsible animal research represents the best chance and
 holds the greatest potential to find a cure for AIDS.
     Today, there are 37 million people worldwide living with HIV/AIDS.  In the
 past 25 years, 20 million people have died from AIDS. By 2010, 44 million
 children will have been orphaned by the disease. Despite recent gains in
 medicine, 3 million people with AIDS died in 2003.
     Your advertisements for PeTA -- and participation as an honorary committee
 member of its upcoming 25th Anniversary Gala on September 10, 2005 --
 legitimize this group's opposition to AIDS research, jeopardizing the lives of
 millions worldwide.
     Ms. Theron, you have a choice: You can choose to support the search for a
 cure to AIDS, or you can continue to support an organization that stands in
 our way. On behalf of the millions of people living with HIV and AIDS, we hope
 you will join our fight for a cure.

SOURCE Patient Advocates Against PeTA