Thursday, October 30, 2008

California social consciences -- I mean cruelty -- could be cured by Prop 2

The headline of an opinion piece by Bonnie Erbe in US News & World Report says, "California cruelty could be cured by Prop 2." Just like all the "progressive" bloggers I read, she thinks Prop 2 is a great and enlightened thing. "It's one of the most important social issues of our time," she says breathlessly. I think I see her point. When progressives socialize, they eat. When they eat, they talk. When they talk, they showcase their social consciences. But it's hard to showcase your social conscience while eating the flesh of a chicken who spent its brief miserable existence jammed in a tiny cage, its beak cut off with a hot blade, just so you could enjoy a hearty dinner. So what's a good progressive to do? They could swear from that moment forth to give up consuming the flesh of chicken and all other animals. But chicken tastes so darn good. And, besides, how can anyone be expected to punctuate a bon mot or a withering political observation with a bite of tempeh? No. Progressives need their chicken. So they move on to option number two. Make the cages bigger. That's it. Write a proposition and put it on the ballot. We demand bigger cages for the chickens. We demand that they have a few extra feet to move around in before their necks are slit open for our benefit. Now that the righteous indignation of the progressives has been codified in a proposition and the proposition's been put on the ballot, they need a good enemy. How about the malevolent corporations? These greedy money grubbers dare to keep the cages the same size? First Haliburton and now this! The righteous fury of the progressives is turned on full blast. They write op-ed columns. They denounce with fury. They sign petitions. They comment on blogs. The progressives will never rest until the chickens can take three more steps before smacking into the side of the cage during their still-brief, still-horrific life before the slaughter. Bonnie Erbe notes in her article that Prop 2 is passing by a margin of 7 to 1. "It's enough to restore one's faith in humanity," she says. No doubt she made that very same observation to a table full of fellow progressives while enjoying the most fabulous chicken cordon bleu imaginable. And then the progressives all proceeded as one to raise their glasses of merlot in a toast to the animals.