I’m planning a trip to San Francisco. My girlfriend is joining me in the middle of the week for the first few days of the trip and my husband is arriving for the weekend and latter part of the trip. I was researching places to eat and my husband asked me to look up a restaurant he ate at while in The City on a business trip a few years ago. The reason for me to look up this place, according to my husband, the Foie Gras was amazing.
Upon searching the Internet for the restaurant, an article popped up on the ban of Foie Gras starting 7/1/2012 in the state of California. WHAT? Quickly doing the math, I realized our trip is in August . . . so no Foie Gras for us. BOO I say!
Now, if you are in support of this ban and anti-Foie Gras, please stop reading now and no hard feelings.
I assume since you are reading on, you are against the ban or are at least curious what I have to say.
The issue is: animal rights organizations say that force-feeding a duck to enlarge its liver for Foie Gras is cruel. California’s only producer of Foie Gras, Sonoma Artisan Foie Gras was given seven years by the California legislature to come up with a “cruelty-free” way. I guess they didn’t find an acceptable alternative and so now, as of July first, you’ll have to get your Foie Gras somewhere other than California.
Look up Foie Gras if you don’t know what it is. Look it up even if you DO know what it is. I recommend the Wikipedia link at the bottom of the page. As you can see, from the Wikipedia article, Foie Gras is nothing new. It’s been around since as early as 2500 BC. And perhaps you’d also like to view the second link, a very informative clip from an Anthony Bourdain No Reservations TV special. Seriously, watch the clip and if that doesn’t tell you that this practice is NOT cruel then I don’t know what will. It’s even got a doctor of Veterinarian medicine saying it’s not cruel. People tend to confuse a human with an animal. And that’s the REAL issue.
I’m against animal mistreatment and cruelty of any kind. There are two major differences on the table with this problem. The first is the situation you saw in the Bourdain clip. The ducks were not caged; they were indeed roaming about, and not sitting in their own filth. As Bourdain said at the end of the clip, those ducks were healthy, happy and supplied good (disease free) Foie Gras. The second is what no one wants to see and that’s caged birds sitting in their own mess, not free to move, sick and probably not at all healthy to eat, liver or otherwise. The second, I’m completely against!
Don’t these people (animal rights) have bigger fish to fry? How about why Tyson won’t let camera crews onto their property. Do you think they have something to hide? What about injecting cows, chickens and lord know what else with hormones so they grow bigger and we get huge chicken breasts at the grocery stores. Ever stop to think how big that chicken was? Is that natural?
Because those fights are against huge corporations with even bigger lawyers, they decided to go after the smaller fight of Foie Gras. Thankfully I don’t live in California, but still the idea of someone telling me what I can and can’t eat kind of pisses me off. How about New York’s ban on any soda larger than 16 ounces to cut down on the sugar intake of its citizens? Really? Do you think that banning a Big Gulp will lead to the realization that sugary sodas are in fact very bad for you?
The fact is we are a meat-eating world. We are born carnivores, pretty much since the cave man figured out he needed to hunt instead starving to death. Our bodies were designed to process animal meat and in fact, our bodies need it. If you choose to get your protein from other sources and not eat meat, that’s great. But the ban of Foie Gras is the first step. Some animal rights groups ultimately want to ban us from eating meat all together. And my friends that’s another post entirely!
It all boils down to choice. If you don’t like Foie Gras or don’t agree with it’s practices, don’t eat it. Don’t support it! But leave it for those of us that do!