Animal Rights Group Claims Victory in Getting Newport-Mesa Schools to End Dissections

Newport-Mesa Unified School District's Board of Education president sent the nonprofit Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) a message Thursday revealing all its schools will end animal dissections, according to the Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit anti-vivisection group. The district has not confirmed to the Weekly that David Brooks sent the message on the next page in response to outrage PCRM expressed in June to disturbing photos on Facebook of Newport Harbor High School students playing with dead cat parts.

See also:

Newport Harbor High School Students Outed for Being Real Cut-Ups with Cut-Up Cats
Anti-Vivisection Group Demands Facebook Remove Harbor High Students' Dead Cat Photos
[Commie Girl] Look What the Cats Dragged In: Animal rights, A Civil Action and other teenage drivel

Here is the email PCRM says it received:

From: Dave Brooks
Sent: Thursday, October 18, 2012 1:24 AM
To: 'John J. Pippin'

Dr. Pippin,

It is good to hear from you. You will be please to note that the school district's process of bringing improvement by engaging the people who are affected by it is working well. The staff at Newport-Mesa Schools decided to eliminate animal dissection and use electronic means in its lessons . It is very satisfying to have a problem which started at the staff level be resolved at the same level. The excellent leadership of our administrators facilitated this decision. An issue that whose beginning was very negative now has a positive conclusion.

Again, thank you for your interest.

David Brooks, President
NMUSD Board of Education

Pippin is PCRM's director of academic affairs, and the nonprofit sent the Weekly this reaction from him with the copy of Brooks' apparent email:

Animal dissection labs serve no purpose other than to kill any sense of compassion among students. As a physician, cutting cats and other animals open to learn about human anatomy makes no sense to me. We applaud Newport-Mesa for ending its animal labs, and we hope this will encourage hundreds of other U.S. schools that still dissect animals to follow suit.

Here are a couple photos, which were accompanied by equally troubling comments, that first concerned PCRM (the Weekly blurred out human faces in case they belonged to minors):

All photos from Facebook


You can see more photos here:

Anti-Vivisection Group Demands Facebook Remove Harbor High Students' Dead Cat Photos

After PCRM raised alarm in a June 19 letter to Brooks, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals wrote a letter to (PETA) followed with a communique of its own to the Newport-Mesa board president urging the district to replace cat dissection lessons with the Norfolk, Virginia-based animal rights group's "virtual dissection equipment" or "modern software."

It is unclear if that is the "electronic means" Brooks refers to in his email to PCRM.

The animal rights groups also urged Facebook to remove the images and video. As of two seconds ago, they were still up.

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It's sad that this turned into an animal rights issue that overplayed the importance the fact that there's new technology available that can provide better education!


It's about time schools step up their technology.  Congratulations to NHHS for moving forward on this.


The grimaces on those innocent animals' faces says it all.  Dissection in these classes is barbaric, inhumane, and totally unconscionable.  


I really applaud the leadership of the district on this topic. There was a lengthy article in I believe NewYorker mag that went into extensive detail on these dissection simulation programs mentioned here. I began as a skeptic but the article brought up important and reasonable points of the benefits of the simulation software. One of the other things discussed in the article was the known carcinogens in the preservatives used for dissection animals. That reason alone makes this kind of transition make sense. Good story.


12 Things You Didn’t Know About The HSUS 


1. The Humane Society of the United States scams Americans out of millions of dollars through manipulative and deceptive advertising. An analysis of HSUS’s TV fundraising appeals that ran between January 2009 and September 2011 determined that more than 85 percent of the animals shown were cats and dogs. However, HSUS doesn’t run a single pet shelter and only gives 1 percent of the money it raises to pet shelters, and it has spent millions on anti-farming and anti-hunting political campaigns.


2. HSUS receives poor charity-evaluation marks. CharityWatch (formerly the American Institute of Philanthropy) reissued HSUS’s “D” rating in December 2011, finding that HSUS spends as little as 49 percent of its budget on its programs. Additionally, the 2011 Animal People News Watchdog Report discovered that HSUS spends about 43 percent of its budget on overhead costs.


3. Six Members of Congress have called for a federal investigation of HSUS. In April 2011, six Congressmen wrote the IRS Inspector General showing concerns over HSUS’s attempts to influence public policy, which they believe has “brought into question [HSUS’s] tax-exempt 501(c)(3) status.”  [Ed: Link to Legislators that Get It:


4. HSUS regularly contributes more to its own pension plan than it does to pet shelters. An analysis of HSUS’s tax returns determined that HSUS funneled $16.3 million to its executive pension plan between 1998 and 2009—over $1 million more than HSUS gave to pet shelters during that period.


5. The pet sheltering community believes HSUS misleads Americans. According to a nationally representative poll of 400 animal shelters, rescues, and animal control agencies, 71 percent agree that “HSUS misleads people into thinking it is associated with local animal shelters.” Additionally, 79 percent agree that HSUS is “a good source of confusion for a lot of our donors.”


6. While it raises money with pictures of cats and dogs, HSUS has an anti-meat vegan agenda. Speaking to an animal rights conference in 2006, HSUS’s then vice president for farm animal issues stated that HSUS’s goal is to “get rid of the entire [animal agriculture] industry” and that “we don’t want any of these animals to be raised and killed.”


7. Given the massive size of its budget, HSUS does relatively little hands-on care for animals. While HSUS claims it provides direct care to more animals than any other animal protection group in the US [Ed, not in their own facilities – there are none), most of the “care” HSUS provides is in the form of spay-neuter assistance.  In fact, local groups that operate on considerably slimmer budgets, such as the Houston SPCA, provide direct care to just as many or more animals than HSUS does.


8. HSUS’s CEO has said that convicted dogfighting kingpin Michael Vick “would do a good job as a pet owner.” Following Vick’s release from prison, HSUS has helped “rehabilitate” Michael Vick’s public image. Of course, a $50,000 “grant” from the Philadelphia Eagles didn’t hurt.


9. HSUS’s senior management includes a former spokesman for the Animal Liberation Front (ALF), a criminal group designated as “terrorists” by the FBI. HSUS president Wayne Pacelle hired John “J.P.” Goodwin in 1997, the same year Goodwin described himself as “spokesperson for the ALF” while he fielded media calls in the wake of an ALF arson attack at a California meat processing plant. In 1997, when asked by reporters for a reaction to an ALF arson fire at a farmer’s feed co-op in Utah (which nearly killed a family sleeping on the premises), Goodwin replied, “We’re ecstatic.”


10.  Americans are now requesting the FTC to investigate the misleading advertising of the HSUS.  Heart-wrenching and misleading ad campaigns imply to the public that this is a true “humane society” that houses strays and unwanted or abused pets, and needs “your” $19/mo to do so.  FACTS: Contrary to public, celebrity and legislator opinion, the HSUS is NOT a humane society.  They do not own or operate ONE pet shelter in the entire country; despite their misleading name, they are not a government arm that systematically trickles donations down to the local shelters that to all the actual work.  If they shelter NO PETS, how can they be considered the “experts” on pet care practices?  Their vegan agenda, now unspoken because it wasn’t bringing in donations, is for the eventual extinction of both domestic animals, and all animal use, via legislation.


11.  At the request of over 6,000 grassroots voting letter-writers, representing all 50 States, the IRS is currently investigating the HSUS as to its under-reporting and over-lobbying activity as a 501©(3) organization.  Millions in back-taxes and penalties could be assessed if the IRS would conclude this 3-year old investigation.


12. Congressmen are now urging the Justice Department to investigate HSUS non-compliance with the Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995, as anyone that attempts to influence legislation via continued contact with Congress and/or staffers is required to register as a lobbyist.  HSUS has never done this.



Another setback for science education. There is no way that an electronic version gives the same information. And even more stupid is listening to a radical anti human fake committee that has at best only one quasi doctor on board.


@VEGGIRL7 gracias for rt!


 @dr.howardhail A rather lengthy red herring, Howard.  The issue here is banning dissection of animals in Newport-Mesa schools,  not the merits or faults of HSUS.  Save your diatribe.



Ah, a Luddite. You should actually learn about a topic before you show your foolishness with such a comment. The interactive and programmable software programs not only display pristine dissection videos and photos, they incorprate biological, environmental, and ecological subjects related to the dissections. 

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