PETA to Obama: Don't Pardon the Turkey
It makes a joke of the 'mass slaughter,' says group
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 20, 2012 4:06 PM CST
Updated Nov 21, 2012 2:36 AM CST
Liberty, a 45-pound turkey, stands on the North Portico of the White House on Nov. 23, 2011, after being pardoned by President Obama.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

(Newser) – President Obama will do the annual pardon-the-turkey thing today, and one group you might not expect is raising objections: PETA. The animal-rights group sent a letter to Obama complaining that the ceremony "makes light of the mass slaughter of some 46 million gentle, intelligent birds," reports the Hill. Assuming the president is unpersuaded, either Cobbler or Gobbler will get the pardon, and for the first time, the White House is asking the public to decide which one is worthy. (Daily Intel finds that a little creepy.) Obama will pardon the lucky fowl this afternoon in a Rose Garden ceremony, the AP reports.

For now, the 19-week-old turkeys are living large at Washington's fancy W Hotel about a block from the White House. Seriously. "They've been good guests," the general manager tells Fox News. "We haven't had any noise complaints from their neighbors." The hotel chef has been fixing them an organic snack mix of grains and cranberries and they're "gobbling it up," the manager adds.