Temple Grandin, the animal-welfare specialist, has brought tremendous changes to the way cattle are treated and slaughtered, countering the slander from animal rightists that the food industry doesn’t care about animal suffering.
She also apparently has little patience for the smug superiority so many in the liberal media exhibit around food issues. Case in point: An interview in today’s New York Times Magazine. From the interview:
Q: You have used your ability to empathize with cattle to design humane slaughterhouses. Given that you’re asked to imagine how they feel on the way to their deaths, I’m surprised you eat meat.
A: Nature’s very harsh. There is nothing about how nature kills things that is kind. When cattle are raised right, they have a really good life. When they go to the meat plant now, they just walk up the chute; it’s no more stressful than going to the veterinary chute.
Q: I know you think in pictures. When you’re looking at a steak you’re about to eat, do you think about the cow in the slaughterhouse?
A: Oh, yes. If I know where it comes from, then I see the plant, because I know all the plants. I’ll go, “That’s Cargill,” or, “Oh, that’s National,” or, “That’s Tyson.”
Q: And it doesn’t spoil your appetite?
A: No. I also think about the hyenas ripping the guts out of something, and that did not happen to that steak. The way the wolves kill things is not that nice. Cats will kill you first, but wolves just rip you open and dine on live guts.
Q: Considering what you’ve done for cattle, have you ever considered making capital punishment more humane?
A: I have read things about the malfunctions of the electric chair, and I know exactly why it did not work. I know how to fix it, but I will not use my knowledge to have any involvement in that. I will not cross the species barrier to help kill people. Period.
Q: Even if you knew you were helping people to die more comfortably?
A: I don’t kill people, period.
Note how the interviewer tried to conflate the treatment and deaths of animals and people. Good for Grandin for having none of it.