The photo above from a recent NY Times article entitled “Chicken’s Attraction Is Truly Skin Deep” has created quite a stir. According the Atlantic wire, PETA’s founder, Ingrid Newkirk, isn’t laughing at the provocatively-posed chicken and was quoted as saying: “It’s downright offensive, not just to people who care about animals but almost to everyone. It’s a plucked, beheaded, young chicken in a young pose.”
I must say, I agree with PETA. I’m not laughing either. I eat meat, and this photo concerns me. I think I understand why it doesn’t bother others, and it traces back to some fundamental differences in how different people perceive food. In fact, I just spoke about this topic in this week’s blog article entitled, “Do You Trust Where Your Meat Comes From.” You see, in today’s food system, we’ve distanced ourselves so far from the chicken, that what we buy at the grocery store is viewed by many as a mere piece of protein. A “widget” per se…just another commodity.
The reality is that chickens are living, sentient creatures, and their lives are sacrificed to feed us. Although I personally don’t have ethical problems with that, my caveat is that the chicken deserves to be treated humanely and with dignity. This pose turns the death of a living being into a prop, and in the process shows careless disregard for life.
In man’s history on earth, there have been many times when he has disrespected life, and it has never led to anything positive. Let’s not forget where our meat comes from. Rather, let us be thankful and remember the sacrifice it has made to nourish us.
What do you think of the photo? How does it make you feel? Please help get the conversation started and share your thoughts and feelings by commenting below.
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