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Oxymoronic foodies and "compassionate meat"

Big City - How About Slaughterhouse Tour Before Supper, Food Lover? - NYTimes.com:

"But the tour, for now, stops short of bringing visitors inside. Knowing the slaughterhouse is there is one thing — seeing what happens inside is another. ‘No, that might be too much,’ said Mr. Barber, who confessed that the first time he visited a slaughterhouse, he experienced the same visceral revulsion that non-foodies often do.
It may be that for some people, seeing it might do just the opposite of enhancing the dining experience. Just how much of a connection to his or her food is anyone willing to make? But then again, to think that seeing the outside of a slaughterhouse would strengthen someone’s connection to the food coming out of it is a little bit like thinking that standing outside a church could bring spiritual enlightenment — isn’t that supposed to come from wrestling with all the messy, improbable, challenging stuff that’s happening inside?
Mr. Barber is clearly taking it one step at a time, and the farm is still considering how it might (safely) open up the slaughterhouse to interested individuals or groups (for now, slaughter day happens on Tuesdays, when the farm is closed to the public). He’s just relieved that the existence of the slaughterhouse hasn’t ‘grossed people out and made them not want to order here,’ a concern that suggests how little he senses his organic-friendly clientele truly understands about what goes on at a farm.
The slaughterhouse, he said, is just as much a part of the farm’s reality as the baby lambs that were born last week. ‘It’s about life and death and disease, and that’s part of what it means to live in an agricultural community,’ he said. ‘We’re not Disneyland.’ "

This is the most sensible thing I've seen on this subject in the media: an actual discussion of the cognitive dissonance buzzing between the antennae of happy, grass-fed animal hype, replete with faux primitivist "respect" - and the cold hard reality of dead animals. If you really want to make this more than a gimmick, have the customers come down on Tuesday, introduce them to Thursday night's dinner, and then have them kill it. We'll see how "connected" they feel when they get served a beautifully presented plate of roast victim, maybe with some of that visceral emulsion - er, I meant "revulsion."

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