My name is Erin and this is food for thought. So here’s an interesting story that’s in the news today. In north Portland Oregon, a chicken has caused a traffic jam because it was trying to cross the road. And not only where cars stopped for the sake of the chicken but local authorities were called. And there’s actually phone clip let’s hear it Dispatcher: Non-emergency. Caller: Hi, um, this is actually not a prank. There is a chicken trying to cross the road off of highway 30 across from the lighthouse. Dispatcher: (laughing) Cute story, right? But I’m not sharing this story because it’s cute. I’m sharing it because it’s particularly interesting when you study the behavior of our society because when people are driving down the road and a duck or chicken or a family of geese are trying to cross the road that’s usually what happens people stop and they wait and they watch and admire them Oh, that’s too cute. Their cuteness, their spunkiness, how they walk, their little faces and beaks. But then drive three blocks down to the nearest fast food joint and order some chicken nuggets or a junior chicken burger. We desire to see the chicken safely make it to the other side of the road, yet not only participate in the confinement and slaughter of millions of chickens every year but say and do absolutely nothing when they are violated and pieces of their body are dismembered fried and then put on menus with adjectives like juicy succulent and crispy. So what I want to know is: if we wouldn’t just keep driving and run over the chicken when we don’t have to, how come we’re okay with this: How can we pay and give our money and support to this when we also don’t have to: Chickens and turkeys raised for meat have been bred to grow so large so quickly that many suffer crippling leg disorders, chronic joint pain and even fatal heart attacks. Sick or injured birds often have their necks broken. Others are clubbed to death. Those who live to reach market weight are thrown into transport crates and loaded onto trucks bound for slaughter plants. Handling is often violent and frequently causes bruises, broken bones and other injuries. At the slaughter plant, the birds are dumped from their crates then roughly snapped upside down into moving shackles by their fragile legs. From there, the birds are dragged through an electrified vat of water which renders them paralyzed but not necessarily unconscious. They are then pulled across the blade which slices their throats, causing blood to pour from their necks. Some of the birds who missed the blade have their throats slit or their heads ripped off by a backup killer. Other birds are drowned and scolded in the tanks of hot water designed to loosen the birds feathers. It just blows my mind that the only difference between some beings, such as a chicken being safe and guided and looked after and waited for and protected or being confined, abused, neglected, violated and slaughtered is whether or not they’re on a road or in a building that we don’t have access to. Why, people, why? Here’s why. Habit. Addiction. Peer pressure. Convenience and taste. And none of those are a necessity. Was it that this is just a really lucky chicken? Or that we’re not actually putting our moral instinct into action? And that we’ve got a little catching up to do with what we pay for and how we let other people treat beings that we have the instinct to protect. Because honestly, if during that traffic jam I went into the middle of the road and picked up the chicken by its leg and slit it’s throat I think there’d be a lot of traumatized children and a lot o traumatized and angry adults that would get out of their cars and say “What are you doing?” and I would say: I’m just doing what’s done every day all around the world I’m just doing what you pay for I’m just doing what you have accepted your entire life to this innocent being that doesn’t wanna die. Just some food for thought. Tell me what you think.