Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Shut Up and Eat Your Pony

The Case for Eating Horse Meat
Congress recently lifted a 2007 ban on funding for the inspection of horse meat, albeit to little applause. It’s not like the country was crazy for the stuff in 2006 and started turning over cars when they found out they couldn’t get it anymore. In a country where Funyuns, bug tacos and cayenne-flavored purgatives are all considered perfectly acceptable, we have never gotten over our national revulsion against horse meat. Maybe we should.

The arguments for eating horse meat would be strong ones, if they weren’t totally irrelevant. For one thing, more Americans are hungry now than at any time in living memory. Part of the reason is the cost of fresh meat, particularly the delicious beef, pork and chicken we have all learned to consider indispensable to human life. (Lamb, veal, turkey and game are remote runners-up.) Americans are never going to eat as much horse as they do veal, which accounts for less than 1% of U.S. meat consumption. Still, because horse meat is unpopular, it will be cheaper, and the poorest Americans could eat fresh meat more frequently.
Of course, the big objection to eating horses is not really food based, but on our American idealization of horses, the transport of the frontiersman and the Indians Native Americans, and the pets and hobby of the upper crust.  But intrinsically, a horse is just an vegetarian animal, probably not quite as intelligent as a pig, but smarter and more evil than a cow.  While I have never eaten horsemeat (to best of my knowledge; there was that roadside taco stand in Baja California...), I have no moral objection to it.  I wonder how it compares to porcupine?

1 comment:

  1. I have had abalone, escagot, cow tongue, and alligator. My dad ate "rocky Mountain Oysters" as a kid on the farn. How bad can it be?

    Probably tastes just like opossum !