CLEVELAND - The animal rights group PETA has an interesting solution to the Cleveland Metropolitan School District's budget problems: selling ads on school lunch trays.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals sent a letter to CMSD CEO Eric Gordon offering to pay for advertisements that say "I am not a nugget. Go vegan!" with a picture of its chick mascot.
"PETA's proposal is a win-win situation for Cleveland's schools," said PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman, in a news release. "The school's budget will get a nudge toward the black, and students will learn an important message about compassion that could also inspire them to start choosing fiber-rich, nutrient-packed vegan meals over artery-clogging meat and dairy products."
In July, the Cleveland school board voted to put a 15 mill levy on the November ballot. The levy would generate $85 million a year, if 100 percent is collected.
But if it fails, the district's deficit would grow to $50 million, Gordon said. The schools would have to cut another 700 to 800 teachers and staff.
PETA said that every person who switches to a vegan diet would save more than 100 animals a year.