PETA suggests more ‘pig-positive’ name for Ham Lake, Minnesota

PETA will send candied yams to the whole city and help cover the cost of new signage if the mayor agrees to change the name to "Yam Lake."

Background: Screenshot/Google Maps. Right: PETA logo/Wikimedia Commons.

The animal rights organization PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, has asked the mayor of Ham Lake, Minnesota, to change the city’s name to “Yam Lake.”

PETA’s president Ingrid Newkirk wrote to Ham Lake Mayor Mike Van Kirk last week, asking him to consider changing the name of the city to something more “pig-positive.”

According to a press release from PETA, “Pigs are smart, sensitive, wonderful individuals, so if we have a heart, we’ll leave their legs alone and choose yams over hams,” Newkirk said.

Her letter to Van Kirk also explains that pigs are “extremely good-natured … just like the dogs and cats who share our homes.”

Located in Anoka County, Ham Lake is home to 16,800 Minnesotans and was named by Scandinavian settlers in 1871 after the shape of the city’s lake.

Google Maps/Screenshot

Activists at PETA think the lake more accurately resembles a yam.

“We would be happy to contribute to the cost of new signage and will send delicious candied yams for the whole town to enjoy if you agree. Everyone at PETA is rooting for you!” the letter to the mayor reads.

PETA opposes a “human-supremacist worldview,” which it calls speciesism. Part of its motto states that “animals are not ours to eat.”

“PETA envisions a new ‘Yam Lake’ that promotes kindness and healthy eating,” Newkirk said, according to a news release.

Sen. Michelle Benson, R-Ham Lake, suggested “Steak Lake” be a contender for the city’s name when asked her opinion on Twitter.

Van Kirk told “Justice & Drew” Thursday morning that he won’t be changing the name, but does plan to host a pig roast this summer.


Katie Larsen

Katie Larsen is a cartoonist and writer for Alpha News.