PETA Barks About Inclusion of Pit Bulls in Mafia Wars

PETA has a little problem with Mafia Wars, and it’s not about the social game clogging up its Facebook stream.

Zynga plans to debut animals as a “fully-fledged combat item class” and is offering two limited edition versions—an African Lion and a Pit Bull.

PETA takes issue with the use of the latter, writing on its blog that:

… perpetuating the image of pit bulls as fighting machines is reckless and wrong. Pit bulls already face a public relations battle and are the most abused breed of dog. PETA’s fieldworkers see pit bulls in horrific conditions every day. They are frequently kept chained or penned, they are taunted and trained to be aggressive, and they are beaten and starved—sometimes to death.

The animal rights activists do note that another Zynga game (YoVille) allows users to purchase bulldogs, from which some of the proceeds are sent to the San Francisco SPCA, so it dubbed the Pit Bull broohaha a “rare” misstep for the social developer.

PETA is encouraging readers to petition Zynga with polite comments in order to get animals removed from Mafia Wars.

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  1. Erik says:

    Because it amuses me:

    … perpetuating the image of Italians as fighting machines is reckless and wrong. Italians already face a public relations battle and are the most abused breed of immigrant. PETI’s fieldworkers see Italians in horrific conditions every day. They are frequently kept chained or penned, they are taunted and trained to be aggressive, and they are beaten and starved—sometimes to death.

    Really one of the thing that bugs me the most about PETA is the fact that they have no perspective whatsoever.  If a person goes on a bloody rampage and murders a thousand people, and wounds one dog, PETA will harp on their immoral actions of harming the dog.  Really there is a time and a place for things.

    And honestly, Mafias are not good or nice people.  Tormenting dogs would be the very least of their sins.

    -Ultimately what will do in mankind is a person’s fear of their own freedom-

  2. hellfire7885 says:

    It might take a long time but breeding that agression out seems like an ideal solution rather than extinction.


    Funny though, while the cases you both mention are rather horrible, outside of dog fighting rings or actualy abuse cases, the two cases you spoke of seem ot be very rare.

    What one also needs to take into account is animals are not all cut from the same cloth personality wise. Maybe the dogs that attacked unprovoked were of a mean disposition personality wise anyway. Or perhaps the owners weren’ty nearly as nice as you think. People behave very differently when they aren’t being watched.

  3. GoodRobotUs says:

    Actually, I agree, my old Border Collie was attacked by a Pit-Bull that started out as friendly as anything as a puppy, but when it matured, it became more and more aggressive, despite the fact the owner was a perfectly nice person. He ended up getting the dog put down because it was just too vicious and he had kids, and was terrified that one day it would attack one of them.

    Frankly, PETA can suck my balls over this, those dogs are dangerous, are bred to be dangerous, and, when only a few weeks ago an 18-month old child was killed by one, I think they are more than a little conceited to be defending them in any way, shape or form. Fact is, if it wasn’t for humans spending years breeding that kind of savagery into the breed, it wouldn’t exist in the first place, so what is less ethical, using them in a game, or breeding a dog that is specifically designed for mindless violence? Maybe PETA should consider that?

  4. Mendror says:

    Once again PETA opens it mouth and spews out bile it knows nothing about. This goes with the other issue they bitched about when you could call attack dogs in the CoD:WaW and shoot them but ignoring the fact that theres heavily more human on human violence in the game, when you see your enemies limbs get shredded off from a grenade explosion and theres head exploding from god knows what.

  5. MechaTama31 says:

    Their point is that perpetuating pit bulls’ aggressive image will lead to more pit bulls being abused in an attempt to make them fit that image.  Or something.  PETA are a bunch of nutbags, I wouldn’t try to think about it too hard…

  6. State says:

    Pit Bulls are vile creatures. Thankfully they’re illegal in the UK.

    Pit Bulls are really the result of decades of breeding to make an aggressive animal. It is simply in their nature to be aggressive and violent, whether trained or not.

    I notice that PETA fail to make any mention of the people killed by pit bulls (many of which were never trained or abused to be aggressive). Apparently animals are always victims and innocent beings. Living with a pit bull is arguably like living with a loaded gun.

    (I await the barrage of complaints).

  7. narcogen says:

     perpetuating the image of pit bulls as fighting machines is reckless and wrong. Pit bulls already face a public relations battle and are the most abused breed of dog. PETA’s fieldworkers see pit bulls in horrific conditions every day. They are frequently kept chained or penned, they are taunted and trained to be aggressive, and they are beaten and starved—sometimes to death.

    I’m trying to get my head around the contradiction they’ve placed right there.

    It is wrong to portray pit bulls as aggressive dogs, because they are trained to be aggressive?

    What’s the issue here, that it’s not the dog’s fault that it’s aggressive? 

    Is it necessary for aggressiveness to be in an animal’s nature, rather than instilled in it by training and/or bad treatment in order for it to not be "wrong" to portray that aggressiveness? Is Mafia Wars even attempting to make a value judgment on the worthwhileness of pit bulls as beings, or even as pets? Should it, or any other game or entertainment product, be required to make such value judgments about all their elements?

    Don’t get me wrong– Mafia Wars is a pox on Facebook, but this is completely out of left field.


  8. hellfire7885 says:

    Hehe, same. Happily, unlike PETA, we can distinguish reality from fantasy enough to enjoy the humor behind it, even if it is black humor.

  9. harrypres55 says:

    Ah, yes, Postal 2. I had to go to Youtube and see the cat gun again. It’s still just as funny now as it was back then.

  10. Dejiko says:

    In the case of the dogs, many of them will attack you when they see you – this of course also attracts the more dangerous human enemies. There are also various types of "man-made" animals that have a mixture of various genes – sadly their only purpose is to be used as weapons (If I were a halfway rational animal rights activist this would be the part I would be mad about)

    It’s also worth noting that you can go through the entire game killing almost no one. one person tried to go through the game without killing ANYTHING, but quit when they accidently killed a dog.

  11. hellfire7885 says:

    Deus Ex let you kill dogs, cats, and birds, though there was absolutely nothing to gain from it. And Postal 2, well, animal cruelty abounds i nthat game.

  12. PumaFau says:

    Honestly doesn anyone care?

    PETA is offically run by basement dwelling hypocrites


    Never underestimate the power of idiots in large amounts.

  13. Bigman-K says:

    Im no animal rights advocate although i love animals and believe they should be treated somewhat humanely for the most part (no excruciating painful deaths when killing them for meat or fur), but it’s pretty sad that the most well-known animal rights group out there is absolutly batshit insane.

    Are there any moderate animal rights groups out there that could take over for them. You know, ones that aren’t lacking in common sense and can actually tell reality from fantasy and not make the average normal animal rights proponent seem koko.

     "No law means no law" – Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

  14. Neeneko says:

     Because that might involve actual work? Or working WITH productive organizations or *gasp* the police.

    PETA has no interest in actual change.  They are like those ‘athletic’ clubs where no one does any actual athletics… they exist to socialize, get attention, preform daring acts, and hook up.

  15. hellfire7885 says:

    How about they try better to deal with REAL dog fighting rings instead of a game imitating life.

  16. Cerabret100 says:

    Can’t really argue that Pit Bulls get a seriously bad rap, and this doesn’t help.

    People just automatically assume pit bull is a killer, and while, yes their breeding was focused (i think, don’t quote me on this) on producing a powerful, agressive dog, if raised in a proper way, it’s poses about the same danger as any other large breed.

    As for PETA…well it seems to be handling this situation okay, calling for a polite petition. Doesn’t really excuse their other actions, but i’m always hopeful for change.

  17. hellfire7885 says:

    Well, we ARE talking about a group who would free dachund dogs i nthe wild despite that that dog breed woudln’t likely survive.

  18. Baruch_S says:

    I’d be more convinced if this were a sane organization like the ASPCA instead of PETA. Next thing you know they’ll be protesting people buying mounts in WoW because it promotes animal slavery or some such nonsense. They’re just crazy, and I think that overrides any good intentions they might have.

  19. gellymatos says:

    Mmmm. That’s good meat. Hey, guess what PETA? I’m part of a Brazilian family. That’s right.




    Seriously though, Mafia Wars? Doesn’t that "game" not even show violence? They just show the weapon and the damge it does. It doesn’t show the image of a dog killing anyone. Other videogames have had worse animal violence. Off the top of my head, there’s the Resident Evil Series, which had various forms of zombie animals. I believe the next movie’s going to have them as well. Both Modern Warfare series had German Shepards of which players, including myself, had to shoot or break their necks or get the character’s virtual throat eaten. I’m betting I could find more example of this too. I think PETA went for Mafia Wars simply to start something with a game and company that’s powerful. Just for some attention. That, or they’re somehow forgetting a lot of other potential targets that don’t seem as big as facebook.


    "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits." -Albert Einstein

  20. Arell says:

    There’s an early mission where you can mug a woman in a dark alley.  The accompanying image shows you holding a brick while menacing her.  Maybe Women’s Right’s groups should step in.  😛

    Face it, Mafia Wars describes a lot of violent crimes and property damage.  How can you pick out something as meaningless as fictional attack dogs and treat it with more seriousness than all the violent stuff against humans?

    Oh right, PETA is nuts.

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