People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals said a moratorium on animal statues by the Louisville Metro Government came only after the group applied for its permit a year ago, and so their application should not be held to rules made at a later date, the Louisville Courier-Journal reported Monday.
The city has stalled, ignored and inappropriately sent back the application in an attempt to "frustrate" PETA in its effort to display the statue protesting what it believes is inhumane treatment of chickens by suppliers of Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants,said Jeff Kerr, PETA's general counsel.
PETA wants to display the 5 1/2-foot tall statue, with the inscription, "KFC Cripples Chickens" for one month at a corner near the Kentucky International Convention Center in the home city of Yum!Brands, KFC's corporate owner, the Courier-Journal said.
The city denied PETA's application because the convention center owner would not approve of the statue, the newspaper said.
PETA said Louisville's June 24 rejection of its application violates PETA's constitutional right to free speech.
The city has 15 days to rule on the group's appeal, the newspaper said.
"Our statue will show Louisville what KFC desperately tries to keep from the public -- that chickens suffer broken bones, become crippled under their own weight, have their throats slit while they are conscious and are often scalded alive," said PETA spokeswoman Ashley Gonzalez.
The PETA statue is "just another misguided publicity stunt by PETA in their efforts to create a vegan society," said Rick Maynard, a KFC spokesman.