Eating a dead horse: Five reasons why horse meat isn't such a terrible tragedy
|There be good eatin' on a harse.|
Americans don't eat dog for the same reasons they don't eat horses: Because our culture dictates that horseys and doggies are our friends and companions, that they are noble, majestic, intelligent creatures who live to serve and love humans as their protectors and benefactors. The idea of relegating our friends and companions to the oven or soup pot is reprehensible to most people.
But cultural ideas about what is and isn't okay to eat have changed in the past -- people have been deathly afraid of now-normal things like tomatoes, potatoes, onions, mushrooms and offal, for example, as well as anything out of a can. The can part was perfectly understandable, since early tin-can processing was less than sanitary, and the mangled, boiled things in them were not exactly safe or tasty. But things got better with time and technological advances, and processing horse could, as well. And honestly, the processing of horse meat wouldn't be nearly as tricky as the marketing.
1. Meat can get expensive. Why not have another source?
I love meat. I love planning recipes with meat, pinching fat cuts of meat through chilly cellophane wrappings at the grocery store, peering at the rows of plump, fat-ringed steaks at the butcher shop, and I love picking just the right cut and type to make the perfect dish of whatever. But what I do not love is paying high prices for meat. Sure, there is a certain joy in the American privilege of bitching about meat prices like a bored old hag, but I would far prefer to pay less for meat -- and have more choices.
I didn't create the circle of life; The Lion King did. I would gladly eat lions, tigers and bears, all with a splash of A-1 sauce and a loaded baked potato -- topped with salty horse bacon.