If you were a ’70’s, ’80’s or early ’90’s baby, I’m sure one of your favorite things about missing school or being on summer vacation was that you got to watch the Price is Right. It’s a fun game to play at home, the cars are always amazing and the people are priceless. Most people love how charismatic Bob Barker is, he’s so charming and how on earth does he look so amazing? Well a vegetarian diet of course! Bob Barker is a pop icon and a game show legend, but who exactly is this man?
I remember being home schooled in Kindergarten and watching the Price is Right. I knew from the age of 4 that I wanted to move to Hollywood, CA and be a Barker’s Beauty. As I got older, I wondered who he was and I started reading up on him. That year I became vegan, the next year I moved to Hollywood (right off of Sunset Blvd) and I sent my photo in numerous times to be a Barker’s Beauty. I have a past pageant history and many things that connected me to Bob Barker, but my ultimate goal was to meet him. By the time an open casting call happened, it was for the new host of The Price is Right and I knew without Bob being on the show I wanted no part of it. Even now I forget it’s still an ongoing show because without Bob it’s not the same. When people ask me who my hero is I say “Bob Barker” and it always gets me the weirdest looks. When I explain why they’re blown away by the awesome person that he is, but few really know life details about him. Fun fact about me: I paid over $200 for a ticket to go to the Daytime Emmy’s simply because they were honoring Bob Barker’s career after he retired from the show. I still have the book and photos I took from the event. It was an honor to be there to see the legend that I love, honored for his work.
Top 10 Reasons Why Bob Barker is my hero, and why he should be yours:
10. He refused to emcee the Miss America & Miss USA Pageants if They Didn’t Stop Using Fur Coats
Bob Barker’s late wife, Dorothy Jo quit wearing the fur jackets that Bob had been giving her. She educated him on the abuse that goes into fur. He then told the Miss America pageants that if they didn’t stop using fur coats in the pageants, then he would quit hosting. They stopped for awhile, but in 1988 they started giving fur coats out as prizes and he quit hosting. He definitely stands up for what he believes in, that’s a true man!
9. “Have Your Pets Spayed or Neutered”
This iconic statement is known by most, this is how he ended each episode of the Price Is Right from the ’80’s and on. Bob Barker established the DJ&T Foundation, named after his late wife, Dorothy Jo and his mother Matilda “Tilly”, to financially support low cost spay and neuter clinics.
8. He is Vegetarian
With his wife’s help he went vegetarian in 1979. “I gave up red meat and fowl, and gradually fish and dairy products as well. I did it out of concern for animals, but I have certainly learned why so many people are becoming vegetarians out of concern for health reasons. I can control my weight better than before, I feel better, I have more energy, and I think that it is certainly a healthful way of life.” -Bob Barker. If you’ve seen how amazing he looks in his 90’s, you’ll believe in the power of a plant based diet!
7. He Rescues Zoo Animals
Bob Barker spent approximately $1 million to get three African elephants from the Toronto Zoo to an animal sanctuary in California. The Toronto City Council allowed for their removal in 2011 after activists such as Barker voiced their concerns about having large animals held within zoos. With the addition of Toka, Iringa and Thika, the Performing Animal Welfare Society’s ARK 2000 compound has a total of 11 elephants.
6. He Helps Stop Whaling in Japan
In 2010, Barker donated $5 million to the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society to fight whaling off of the Japan coast. In 2014, Japan didn’t kill 1 whale!!
7. He Supports the Teaching of Animal Ethics and Law
Bob Barker has donated $2 million to his alma mater, Drury University, to establish the Dorothy Jo Barker Endowed Professorship of Animal Rights to create and Animal Ethics course at Drury. Bob Barker has also made several million dollar donations to schools such as University of Virginia, Columbia Law School and Stanford Law School to establish animal law programs.
6. He Helped Ban Circus Elephants from Circuses
Elephants have been shown to be as smart as humans and while I think keeping an animal in a circus is an act of abuse, it especially is for elephants. The bill, HR2929, calls for the banning of the use of elephants in circuses. “Elephants have suffered terribly ever since they have been used in circuses, and many, if not most of the people who go to circuses have no idea how miserably the elephants live and how terribly they are treated in order to make them perform,” Bob explains. “I am doing all I can to help expose this cruelty. I am also hopeful that as people become more aware of the terrible suffering of animals in circuses that they will refuse to attend them. And that animals in circuses will become a thing of the past.”
5. He’s An Advocate for Using Shelters, Not Breeders
Bob Barker has adopted all of his animals from shelters or in the case of his dog, Winston a friend couldn’t find a home for him and generously took him in. His animals are his family, “I can’t exaggerate how important they are to my life. I don’t know what my life would have been without animals. When I come home, they’re there to greet me, and they’re the last things I see when I leave for the studio. I absolutely adore them and love them, and I think it would be a very lonely life without them. I recommend them for any old, gray-haired man living alone.”
4. He’s a Bad Ass
He has a black belt in Karate and trained under Chuck Norris.
3. He Always Made Sure Prizes on The Price is Right Were Animal Friendly
Bob Barker was not asked to appear on the 40th Anniversary of the Price is Right show. He said, “Because I have been critical of them for giving away prizes that I consider inappropriate.” He complained to producers for awarding tickets to Sea World and the Calgary Stampede as prizes. Both organizations “are notorious for animal abuse,” Barker said. When he was host of the long running show, Bob had said, “We stopped giving away fur coats many years ago. In addition we don’t give away anything leather, no hunting safaris, and if it is a trip to Spain, the last thing you’ll see is a bullfight.” He adds that “Once a week we’ll have an animal on the show in some sort of setting that came from a shelter. I will mention that if you don’t live out here, just go to the shelter near your home and you’ll find a fine friend.” I, personally have quit watching the show since Bob left because I support his policies and I feel that they don’t honor his wishes anymore.
2. Barker Leads Animal Rights Protests Against Walmart
If you know anything about me, you know that I hate Walmart as much as I hate animal abusers. So, of course, my hero would lead a protest against Walmart. He’s my knight in shining armor after all. He warned people of the pork sold at Walmart stores. They were treated very inhumanely at Christiansen Family Farms for being in confinement crates before being sent to slaughter.
1. He Puts His Money Behind Words
One of my favorite things about Bob, is he stands up for what he believes in. If you’re an animal rights activist you will know that it’s never easy to stand up for what you believe in. It’s very controversial and people think you’re talking crazy. But Bob does it in the face of adversity and stands up to huge companies for his personal beliefs. He’s a true gentleman and friend to all animals. He’s inspired me to create my blogs to spread my message about the benefits of a vegan lifestyle and to show people how to do it so they understand it is pretty easy. He taught me to stand up for what’s right regardless what people think. He has also spent milions and miliions of dollars as you can see, to further animal rights and activism. He should be anyone’s hero because he makes this world a better place and raises awareness for animal injustice.