Iggy Pop is no more dangerous than a baby seal these days

Seals are adorable. Just look at them, with their slick little fat bodies and their puppy-dog faces. When you go to the zoo, they do their cute little tricks and make their cute little guttural noises and clap their little fins like adorable little retarded children. Seals are about as cute as can be.

And as we all know, it's wrong to kill animals, especially ones that are cute.

That's basically the gist of a recent campaign from PETA, everyone's favorite group of publicity-stunt-prone vegetarians. The animal-rights organization has already assembled a veritable D-list of celebrities to do its bidding that includes Pamela Anderson and Bryan Adams in opposition to the practice of clubbing baby seals — which could only be an easier target if it was the clubbing of tiny kittens — and last week, it added two more to that venerable roster: Ke$ha and Iggy Pop. That last one is a little bit confusing, if only because in my mind's eye, Iggy Pop would be clubbing a baby seal and then appearing on American Idol wearing it as a grisly hat. (Kidding.)

Iggy Pop has been a well-known animal-rights guy for quite some time, a career vegetarian and PETA endorser (Ke$ha is, too, actually), but that doesn't make either the former's weird appearance on American Idol the other week or his outpouring of sympathy for baby seals any less tiresome.

Look: I'm not exactly in favor of killing baby seals. I like seals, and I haven't bludgeoned an animal to death with a hooked truncheon in at least ten years. But it's not as if there's any real urgent call to put a stop to it, either. Seals are not endangered. In fact, harp seal populations in Canada — one of the few countries where clubbing is still allowed — have been on the rise or steady since the 1960s, when the Canadian government imposed quotas on the practice. Much of the clubbing itself is done by fishermen, who don't take kindly to no seals because seals eat a large portion of the fish that fishermen are trying to catch (about $10.5 billion worth per year, by some estimates). Fair enough. But why the clubbing? Apparently, gun shots scare them away, but clubbing somehow doesn't. They'll pretty much just wait around to get clubbed, which is weird, but also a sensible reason to employ the method.

It's not a pleasant image, but then again, neither is the roughly 9 billion less adorable animals we slaughter and eat in the U.S. every year. Chickens, for instance, are not as cute as seals — not to mention that they shit all over the place. But they're delicious, so it's cool.

What I'm saying is, if the "Gimme Danger" Iggy Pop I once knew and loved were all about animal rights, he'd be slathering himself in peanut butter and glass and digging a tunnel into the chicken-processing facility to let those dumb birds free instead of railing against a misdeed so lurid it couldn't possibly be endorsed by anyone except the handful of hapless Canadian fishermen whom it benefits.

But today's Iggy Pop is an easier, softer Iggy, with an album of soft-rock covers on the way. No, really. Soft-rock covers. These days, the one who searches and destroys is no more dangerous than a baby seal.

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hey jeff you know theres a recorded phone conversation between iggy and danny feilds from 1971 where iggy talks about crying over the recent death of his pet bird right? in your tiny childish brain the young iggy would bite the head of a bird or something right? because killing animals is so fucking punk RAWK DOODE


this guy jeff ote is an immature douchebag. beating small defenseless animals to death does not make you edgy or cool loser it makes YOU the pussy.

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Your inability to string together logic concerning the intricate ethics of farming and hunting isn't really the most disappointing aspect of your post, Johnny. The most disappointing part is that you can't seem to appreciate Iggy Pop enough to hate that he's doing two things so mainstream: standing up with PETA, the most pretentious snobby snobbington (thanks for this genius wording) of all animal rights groups, to fight against the easiest shit to fight against and pissing all over the integrity of music by covering soft rock. Soft rock for Christ's sake. Covers. Wow.

I expect more out of Iggy, too. I expect him to take the tough road, to have some integrity, to write his own songs and stand up for something important, like how the US hunted away all its natural predators (are you imagining Iggy with an awesome wolf eating a chicken t-shirt, 'cause I am), and to never stoop to pleasing bratty granola-crunching trustafarian veggies when he could be pleasing himself. And if you think Iggy fucking Pop is happy covering "Michelle," you don't know shit about Iggy Pop.

Johnny Betancourt
Johnny Betancourt

Wow, this post is beyond ridiculous. Last time I checked, people weren't eating baby seals, they are wearing their fur, moron - which is completely despicable. Don't give us any of this fisherman crap. At least people eat the chickens that they slaughter. BTW, if you want to test your theory that Iggy is softer now, just put him in a small room with one of those effing fishermen................or you, for that matter.

Jef Otte
Jef Otte

Hey Johnny,

Can you clarify for me the ethical difference between slaughtering animals for one thing and slaughtering them for another? I just really don't see how one act is despicable and the other is a-ok. Also, yes, people do eat seal meat. But you know what? That fact will only make you angrier, because you do not oppose the killing of animals -- you oppose the killing of animal that pull on your heart strings.

Johnny Betancourt
Johnny Betancourt

Umm, fyi dude, I don't eat any meat. Nada, nunca. Not fish, not chicken, not beef, and definitely not baby seal meat, for the love of all that is good in this world. I do not condone the killing of innocent creatures for any reason, but I'm am not so self righteous, that I cannot listen and try to comprehend why some people choose to do so, if the animal is killed in a humane way, though that's probably like, never. And if you don't get the difference between killing an animal for food vs. killing them for a hideous coat, or killing them humanely vs. clubbing them over the head in front of all the others who are next, well, thenl.......you're pretty much a lost cause. But If you think you can say that clubbing seals is better than shooting them, because bullets would scare them away, and not illicit some strong reactions, well then, you're delusional. Plus I like that Iggy is doing something that some pretentious snobby snobbington like yourself, doesn't think he should be doing - whether it's American Idol, an anti seal-clubbing Peta Ad, or soft rock, which is not actually what he's doing if you'd bother to investigate. That's what you'll never understand, and that's what makes him more "punk rock" than anyone in this world

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