Urge Ohio Radio Station to Make Annual ‘Buckeye Chuck’ Event Groundhog-Free

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According to absurd Groundhog Day folklore, if groundhogs see their shadow should they come out of their burrow on February 2, there will be six more weeks of winter. If they don’t see their shadow, spring will arrive early. Even though groundhogs are intelligent and self-aware, their shadows can’t predict the weather. However, events across the country celebrate this tired tradition by dragging groundhogs out of hibernation and displaying them as props in front of rowdy crowds.

Marion, Ohio, radio station WMRN-AM hosts an annual Groundhog Day event, and despite having put on a successful event in 2023 with a stuffed groundhog, it’s back to using a live one (known as Buckeye Chuck). We understand that 2024’s groundhog is a rehabilitated animal, a great step, and that he won’t be handled—but he’ll be transported from his home and placed in front of a noisy crowd with lights and cameras in an unfamiliar environment. That will cause needless stress, and there are lots of other ways to hold a fun event!

Groundhogs are shy, sensitive individuals who live in underground burrows that can span many acres, and using them as props for silly events is no cause for celebration—it’s inhumane and an example of speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview that all other species exist for us to do with whatever we please. PETA is urging the radio station to leave Buckeye Chuck alone and be creative enough to make all future Groundhog Day events animal-free. Nothing is natural about taking groundhogs out of their comfort zone and pretending that they’re meteorologists.

Please politely ask WMRN to make all future celebrations animal-free and instead use a costumed human mascot or another gimmick that doesn’t involve animals.


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