By Paula Moore
File this one under "What were they thinking?" The Lobster Zone, found in some bars and restaurants, is similar to traditional arcade claw games—except instead of trying to win stuffed animals, players vie for live lobsters.
Lobsters who don't escape the mechanical claw are dropped down a chute and boiled alive for the winner's dinner.
Not surprisingly, as soon as restaurants install this gimmicky game, complaints start pouring in. After hearing from PETA about complaints made by customers, Ohio's Upper Deck restaurant gave its Lobster Zone machine the boot. In California, following a protest by Orange County People for Animals, the Beach Club Sports Bar & Grill also removed the game.
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Lobsters can feel pain, as all animals do, and as a local California paper put it, "[M]aking a game out of any creature's death is unsettling and certainly the wrong message to send to children." If you see one of these cruel games in your town, please take action! Contact PETA at [email protected] for assistance.