First, a warning: the video below is very disturbing. It’s footage of cows being prepared for slaughter at Hallmark Meat Processing. This video, which was surreptitiously shot by the Humane Society, led to the largest ever recall of beef – 134 million pounds – although most of the recalled meat has already been eaten. (A big percentage of the beef went to the school lunch program.) The NY Times today had a good editorial on the whole affair.
I like to eat meat, too. I’m not a vegetarian. (Although I am getting increasingly vigilant about only eating humanely raised meat.) The reality, though, is that our cruel factory farming practices won’t stop unless people begin to associate a 99 cent fast-food hamburger with the image of a sick cow being poked by a forklift so that it will walk into the slaughterhouse. Cheap meat is morally expensive.