Advocacy: Greeting Cards
- Nearly every card aisle you walk down has at least one greeting card with a "smiling" chimpanzee on the front. They are meant to be humorous, but the reality behind the photos is anything but a joke. The chimpanzees pictured on these cards are most often chimpanzees used in the entertainment industry, where training techniques are abusive and fear-based. Often the chimpanzee is shown with a big human-style wide smile, but when a chimpanzee shows their top teeth it's usually not a smile at all -- it's called a "fear grimace," so the chimpanzee on the card is either fearful or has been trained to make this face on command.
- What can you do about these cards? You can look on the back to see if there is any information about where the photo was taken, then write it down and email us. If you ever receive a card with a fear-grimacing chimpanzee on the front, be sure to take advantage of an important educational opportunity -- tell the person who gave you the card the truth and ask them to not purchase these greeting cards again in the future.
- One of the largest card companies, American Greetings, agreed to stop printing most cards with chimpanzee images in December 2016, thanks to people speaking out.