Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Cluck, Cluck, Cluck: Let the Holidays Begin!

While perusing the Web this weekend I discovered that September is National Chicken Month. Intrigued, I dug deeper, only to find the shallow origins of the “celebration.”

Basically, the National Chicken Council—which represents “chicken producers, processors, and distributors”—wants us to eat more chicken. And to advocate their mission, they’ll give us every resource we need to be informed consumers: an abundance of how-to info in buying, preparing, and cooking the birds.

All I have to say to that is, “Ew.”

I’m all for a National Chicken Month, but one devoted to the chicken. A month during which we study and appreciate chickens—the range of breeds, the endangered breeds, the plumage, the color palette, the personalities.

If you want to celebrate national Chicken Month my way, treat yourself to a viewing of the quirky documentary The Natural History of the Chicken. Read the tale of an urban chicken who, stolen from her backyard, brings a community together. See how chickens live when they’re not enslaved on a factory farm.

Take a moment to see chickens AS chickens, and not as dinner. This month, celebrate the intrinsic value of every chicken.

“I am sometimes asked ‘Why do you spend so much of your time and money talking about kindness to animals when there is so much cruelty to men?’ I answer: ‘I am working at the roots.’”
—George T. Angell

[The photographer of the Japanese Onagadori (first photo) is unknown; the other pics (from top to bottom)—the Faverolle Rooster, Silkie Rooster, Frizzle Hens, and Splash Polish Rooster—are from Chicken Pics.]

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