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Response to "A Farm Boy Reflects"

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Great thoughts can hardly compare with Mr. Kristof’s love of hamburgers…

A Vegan’s Response to Nicholas Kristof’s 7/31 NY Times Op-Ed piece, A Farm Boy Reflects.

By David Irving


Nicholas Kristof’s happy-go-lucky New York Times Op-Ed Page article A Farm Boy Reflects (7/31/08) reminds me of Ring Lardner’s short story Haircut in which a small town barber mindlessly recounts the thoughtless and cruel exploits of some of the town’s local characters. Kristof cheerfully describes his boyhood days on the farm where the geese "virtually become family friends," but only after years of being slaughtered. He relates that he was troubled by the "unforgettable character and obvious intelligence" of the pigs, which the reader is left to surmise ended up in the stew. But Mr. Kristof quickly lets us know that such "trouble" does not penetrate deeply. With tongue in cheek he cleverly notes that "pork chops" are his intellectual equals even as he eats them. Funny! But aside from expressing a hunch that in a century or two our descendants will be repulsed by factory farms, Kristof offers not a hint that he is aware of the connection between eating animals to the larger issues of animal cruelty, individual and public health risks, environmental damage to the earth, and world poverty. He gives a nod of approval in the general direction of the animal rights movement while at the same time pushing his love of meat eating in the face of everyone who has become aware of just what eating meat is all about. His article can only serve to function as a good ol’ boys guide to meat eating and cannot go unchallenged.

To briefly set the record straight, factory farming that produces the meat of which Mr. Kristof is so enamored, is notoriously cruel to animals

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