Since 1887, residents of Punksertoni, Pennsylvania, have been convinced that a guinea pig named Punxsutawney Phil can predict the end of winter, according tomedia. As in the film “Day of the Earth’s Rat”, every year on February 2nd, Phil is coaxed out of his home on the stump and appears in front of a crowd.
The elders in high hats said that if Phil “saw his shadow” there would be more than six weeks of winter, if not early spring.
But PETA, an animal rights group, says it’s time to stop terrorizing an innocent rodent, instead saying Punxsutawney Phil should be replaced by an electronic rat that uses artificial intelligence to predict the weather.
“Times have changed. Traditional evolution. Phil is long overdue to retire,” INgrid Newkirk, PETA President and Founder, wrote in a letter to the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club.
“By creating an AI Phil, you can keep Punxsutawney at the center of Earth’s Day, but in a more progressive way. Take your city’s annual heritage in a fresh and innovative direction! “
One of petA’s core principles is that animals are not used for recreation. The group believes that the guinea pigs are nocturnal animals that hibernate in the wild for the winter. In contrast, Punxsutawney Phil sleeps during the holidays and lives in a residence attached to the local library.
“As a prey, the earth dialysis actively avoids humans,” Newkirk writes. When Phil was dragged out of the hole and faced with flashing lights and crowds, he had no idea what was going on. “
“The meek, fragile earthworm is not a barometer,” Tracy Reiman, PETA’s executive vice president, said in a press release. “
But in an interview with The Washington Post, Bill Deepley, president of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club, said Phil was treated well and enjoyed his daily life. His diet is healthy, his habitat is temperature-controlled, and his caves are inspected by the Department of Agriculture every year. “If he’s so afraid of the camera, if he’s so afraid of us and the crowd, why doesn’t he try to escape?” Deepley said.
PETA’s advice is that Phil deserves a well-deserved retirement, and that the tradition of Earthhogday should be renewed into the 21st century. They point out that an electronic rodent can do the same, and with the help of AI, it can make more accurate predictions about the weather.