I am not a big fan of eating foie gras. I generally find it too rich, and I once spent an hour looking through a book containing nothing but recipes for enlarged livers and got really turned off. Nevertheless, I’m horrified at Chicago’s ban on the food. A story in today’s paper reveals more about the national plot to eliminate foie gras not only from restaurant menus, but from grocery stores, farms, and citizens’ homes.
According to the Times, animal rights activists have strong-armed Whole Foods into threatening to terminate its contract with Grimaud Farms unless they stop doing business with Sonoma Foie Gras. It’s a convoluted plot, no doubt started by PETA or some other sick animal rights organization, all part of a master plan to turn us into a sad country of vegetarians. Whole Foods is totally giving in, of course, “because of the cruelty” involved with the production of foie gras. Please. What about the cruelty of your endless aisles of overpriced products wrapped in layer after layer of hard plastic? That is cruel. What about your duck breasts and chicken hearts and sausages? What do you think happened to the rest of that duck? There is nothing more wrong with foie gras than with any other animal by-product, including steak, eggs, and Jell-O. It’s all mean to animals, and it’s all okay with me.
Legislation has already been passed in California to ban the production and sale of foie gras by 2012, and similar legislation is being tossed around here in New York.
The day that PETA has any influence on what I can consume is the day I am prepared to flee the country. Even Thomas Keller is concerned: “If force-feeding a duck is cruel, then packing chickens in a cage is cruel, and then the veal and the beef. We are all going to be vegetarians soon if they have their way.” And Charlie Trotter sets a good example; he voluntarily took foie gras off his menu five years ago, because he decided that he was opposed to the production. While I don’t necessarily agree with him, I do have great respect for people who form opinions and then live their lives according to them. That is the way to make a difference. All PETA will do is make foie gras even more luxurious and desirable. I could eat some right now, in fact, if only in protest. They must be stopped.