Whether you love People For the Ethical Treatment of Animals or hate them, you have to admit the group is really good at getting attention.
The Norfolk, Va.-based animal welfare organization manages to routinely trigger right-wing types, who troll the group with T-shirts and bumper stickers repurposing the PETA acronym as “People Eating Tasty Animals.” Their in-your-face tactics also frequently turn off left-leaning folk who otherwise might be inclined to lend support to their cause.
Regardless of where you stand on the group, one of PETA’s most effective weapons in its arsenal has been to call out high-profile people for actions that draw disapproval.
And PETA’s latest target, of all people, is UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Video from 1997 of a young Nurmagomedov wrestling a bear showed up on YouTube in 2017.
Since then, the champ has grappled with the same bear, whom he now regards as his “old friend,” in 2014 and again in 2019.
And with Nurmagomedov back in the news once again following his UFC 242 victory over Dustin Poirier, PETA decided to pounce, calling on the UFC to distance itself from its champion until he stops the sambo with Smokey.
“PETA encourages the UFC to evaluate its relationship with Mr. Nurmagomedov until he shows a clear change in attitude and a commitment to showing animals the respect that they deserve,” PETA UK director Elisa Allen recently told Business Insider.
Perhaps Ms. Allen didn’t notice that a person of note in attendance at UFC 242 in Abu Dhabi was Chechen dictator Ramzan Kadyrov, a Nurmagomedov supporter who has been accused of rounding up gay men in his republic for torture. If the UFC isn’t going to act on that, we’re also going to guess the promotion won’t cut ties with one of its biggest draws because of a wrestling match with a bear that left the animal pretty much unharmed.
PETA will then have to move on to its next publicity stunt.
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Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie
Read the full article here: PETA outraged by Khabib Nurmagomedov wrestling bears, calls on UFC to act