|At 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, February 18, six members of
Island Residents Against Toxic Environments (IRATE) gathered outside of
the new McDonalds restaurant in Charlottetown, PEI. The event was the Grand
Opening for the new building, and Ronald McDonald was in attendance for
the ribbon cutting ceremony and to play with the children. The protest
culminated with a 5-foot tall Ronald McDonald lookalike being set afire
as the "real" Ronald was getting into his van.
When the activists arrived, they set up the homemade Ronald, then proceeded to distribute leaflets to bystanders and the customers inside the store. The leaflets were about what's wrong with McDonalds, how Ronald lies to children, the global impacts of eating meat, and the condom found in a McDonalds burger in the USA. The protesters also carried placards with slogans like "McGreedy," "McLies," "Anti-union," "McGrease," and "McSlaughterhouse." The public responded positively by honking as they drove by or by turning into the parking lot to talk and get a leaflet. Ronald kept casting nervous glances out the window, but his twin just stared back at him.
The reasons for protesting McDonalds are many, including: cruelty to animals, damaging the environment, low wages and poor treatment of workers, and brainwashing children into eating unhealthy food.
As Ronald left the building, his twin burst into flame.
He hurried to his van and didn't wait around to chat. After Ronald had
finished burning, the demonstrators doused his charred remains with water
Contact: Aaron Koleszar, Island Residents Against Toxic Environments (IRATE) (902) 659-2570,