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A PETA retreat


Protests at last June's Southern Baptist convention in Orlando made headlines, not least of which followed the arrest of an activist with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals who was picked up wearing a chicken suit.

The stunt promoted a meat-free lifestyle as part of PETA's "Jesus was a vegetarian" campaign. Along with several gays and lesbians who protested the denomination's stands against homosexuality, three PETA members were arrested, including one dressed as Jesus, on charges of protesting without a permit and refusing to obey a direct order. The chicken also was charged with wearing a mask in public -- a law designed to stop the KKK from rallying in public.

The charges are still pending. But two weeks ago, the Orange County Sheriff's Office agreed to settle a civil suit PETA filed after the arrests. Orange County will pay PETA $10,000 and agreed to review the ordinance requiring a permit to march. (PETA didn't need a permit because it had less than 25 demonstrators on site at the Orange County convention center.)


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