PETA — those People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals — has a message for the editors at the Associated Press:
Fido's a "he," not an "it."
The organization, known worldwide for championing animal rights, is now taking its campaign to the written word, calling on Norm Goldstein, editor of The Associated Press Stylebook, to revise its guidelines, which currently characterize animals as inanimate objects.
In a letter written to Goldstein, the animal activists ask the AP to "take a progressive step and give animals the respect that they deserve by revising AP style guidelines to reflect the usage of personal pronouns for all animals."
Anna West, the group's director of communications, pointed out to Goldstein that "the American legal system recognized that nonhuman animals deserve legal status beyond that of mere 'property' and that abusive treatment of animals is more than simple vandalism."
No word on whether the AP also was asked to refer to Spot in second reference as Mr. Spot.