‘Bullpen’ is offensive to cows and should be renamed ‘arm barn’: PETA
Animal rights organization PETA is encouraging the MLB to “strike out” the word “bullpen” and switch to “arm barn” instead, arguing that the current term “mock[s] the misery of sensitive animals.”
“PETA encourages Major League Baseball coaches, announcers, players, and fans to changeup their language and embrace the ‘arm barn’ instead,” stated PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “Words matter, and baseball ‘bullpens’ devalue talented players and mock the misery of sensitive animals.”
“Bullpen” refers to the area of a “bull’s pen” where bulls are held before they are slaughtered—it’s a word with speciesist roots & we can do better than that.
Switching to “arm barn” would be a home run for baseball fans, players, and animals ⚾️ pic.twitter.com/2FzSpDG9mQ
— Arm Barn (@peta) October 28, 2021
PETA wrote in its press release that “cows are hung upside down and their throats are slit in the meat industry,” further explaining that “gentle bulls are tormented into kicking and bucking by being electro-shocked or prodded—all are typically held in a ‘bullpen’ while they await their cruel fate.”
PETA also noted that it “opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview.”
The organization also changed the name of its Twitter account to “Arm Barn” to highlight the group’s new crusade.
The Tampa Bay Rays poked fun at the organization’s call for renaming the bullpen, writing on its Twitter account “Tired: Arm Barn. Wired: Ray Tank,” referring to the team’s famed stingray exhibit in its stadium.
Tired: Arm Barn
Wired: Ray Tank
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) October 28, 2021
Meanwhile, an NBC Sports reporter joked about the recent Facebook parent company name change to Meta while referencing PETA’s suggestion to the MLB.
Could I suggest Arm Barn? https://t.co/ieXrOh3aCx
— D.J. Short (@djshort) October 28, 2021
According to NPR, bullpen has been hypothesized to have a few different potential origins, though it may have first appeared in a December 1915 issue of “Baseball Magazine.”
The most popular theory on its origin is that at the turn of the century, most ballparks had large, bull-shaped Bull Durham tobacco billboards on the outfield wall, which is where relief pitchers would go to warm up, reports NPR.
The Hill has reached out to the MLB for comment, but has not immediately heard back.