I was at a fast food restaurant yesterday and encountered something almost too horrible to write about.
On the menu were three different salads. Signs on the counter listed their ingredients—in large print, right out there for everyone to read, even small children. Two of those salads featured "chopped chicken fingers!"
It’s not that I’m a chicken lover, by any means. I don’t even like chickens (as a species, I mean; they’re perfectly acceptable when broiled, roasted, fried, or fricasseed). In my opinion, they’re both mean and stupid, and I’ve neither forgotten nor forgiven all the times as a child that I was pecked on my scrawny little arms when I was trying to gather eggs.
But be that as it may, this kind of brutality is too much, even for chickens. Just imagine those poor birds, squawking in helpless terror while their little fingers are chopped right off. It isn’t just the immediate pain of that experience, either. What kinds of lives can they possibly have afterward? They can’t type, or play the piano, or use their cell phones, or even tie their own shoes. Most of them wouldn’t be able to work, of course. Think about the cost to society of supporting all those fingerless chickens.
Wendy’s was sued for millions by a couple of wannabe con artists merely pretending to have found a chopped human finger in their chili. Yet this other restaurant can get by, not only with using chopped chicken fingers on a regular basis, but with blatantly advertising the fact.
Where is the outrage? Why isn’t anybody doing anything about this horrific abuse? Where are the PETA protesters when you need them?
It’s a harsh world we live in, where innocent birds can be tortured in this way, and no one seems to care. The compassion for these poor victims seems to be as scarce as—well, as hen’s teeth.
"Scarce as hen’s teeth," by the way, is a really old expression that comes from the fact that hens don’t have any teeth. They swallow their food whole and grind it up in their gizzards. That’s because they’re birds, of course. With feathers. And two feet. And wings—instead of arms, and hands, and, um, fingers.