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A man walks into a restaurant… A short story.

September 25, 2010
by


From Huffington Post
By Ari Solomon

This is a test.

A man walks into a restaurant.

Well, actually a man and his dog, a cute-as-hell black Labrador pup… one of those dogs you can’t help but stop to pet on the street or in a park. A young hostess approaches and tells the man that dogs are not allowed in the restaurant, not even on the patio. Then the dog licks her hand. “He’s soooo adorable,” she quickly melts, and tells the man that just this once he can keep the dog with him, as long as the puppy stays in his lap. The man smiles and she shows him to his table.

After a minute, a waiter approaches. He also notices the puppy, but tells the man the owner won’t mind; the restaurant is brand new and different. “We’re a cutting-edge eco-friendly establishment,” the waiter says proudly, explaining that the only food they serve is sustainable and humanely raised. The man says that’s why he’s dining there; as an environmentalist, he loves the concept.

The waiter gives his customer a few minutes and then returns: “Have you decided?” The man, who has never even looked at the menu, smiles, “Yes, I’d like you to cook him,” he says, indicating his little dog.

The waiter laughs nervously: “We don’t serve dog in this restaurant. In fact, I’m pretty sure that’s illegal.” No, the customer happily corrects him, it’s quite legal here, as it is in several other states. Besides, dog, particularly black dog, is considered especially delicious in some cultures. “And,” the man adds, “it’s the most eco-friendly meat around.”

The waiter winces, confused, as the customer continues: “You’re all about sustainable food, right?” The waiter nods. The man explains that five million dogs and cats are euthanized in shelters every year, their meat just tossed away. A shelter is where he got this dog. “If you’re gonna go local and sustainable, eating shelter animals beats the hell out of raising animals on farms, killing them, and trucking their meat around. Just kill the dog humanely — you know, like how you say the other animals served here are killed.”

“It’s a dog,” the waiter stares at the man, “eating them is totally different and disgusting. Dogs are like family members, they’re smart, they’re affectionate, they’re like us.” The man quickly counters, “But pigs are smarter than dogs. In fact, they’re as aware and intelligent as a four-year-old child. Chickens display striking personality traits from being curious to shy to proud, and they form extremely complicated social structures. Cows also have individual personalities. They actually lick you, just like dogs do, to show affection. And I’m sure we can agree that with regards to things like fear and suffering, that dogs, pigs, chickens, and cows are certainly equals.”

“So considering all that,” the man asks, “what’s really the difference if I want to eat this dog?”

Your assignment: Answer the man’s question.

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13 Comments leave one →
  1. MICHELLE MOREL permalink
    September 25, 2010 5:31 pm

    I AM SORRY THAT WE HUMANS EAT SOME ANIMALS FOR FOOD BUT I AM SORRY I COULD NOT AND WOULD NOT EAT MY FAMILY PET WHETHER DOG COW HORSE OR WHATEVER IT IS THAT SPECIAL BOND WITH YOUR PET OR FAMILY MEMBER IS BREED IN YOU TO LOOK OUT FOR EACH OTHER

    Like

  2. Sissy Mac Neil permalink
    September 25, 2010 9:37 pm

    Brilliant!

    Like

  3. Dawn Mason permalink
    September 26, 2010 12:35 pm

    Yes, That’s true! And any kind of animal is capable of being a friend why should it matter if you know the animal or not? that’s the only care about your own attitude Michelle.

    Like

  4. D.G. permalink
    September 26, 2010 7:13 pm

    A co-worker once was mentioning something similar to this. He said, “People don’t want to eat dogs because they’re cute and fluffy.”

    Like

  5. September 26, 2010 7:54 pm

    Excellent story.
    I have a raccoon sitting on my lap, licking my arm as I type this. Many people think nothing of seeing one hit on side of road. It breaks my heart every time I see one – like someone with a yellow lab seeing yellow labs dead all along the road – It is no different for me. And the reality that hunters are allowed to let their dogs shred these amazing animals for fun shatters my soul.
    IT IS TRULY ALL ABOUT PERSPECTIVE!

    PS – I am licensed, experienced and only have non-releasable raccoons. Please do not keep wildlife as pets unless you are as well. It is too risky for them if you get caught.

    Like

  6. September 26, 2010 9:15 pm

    The man is right. There is no difference. To underscore the point, he could bring in a human child to be killed and cooked and have the same conversation, as well. In all cases, it’s murder, but murder of one is legally sanctioned and murder of another is not, which is morally inconsisent. The man is being totally morally consistent, on the side of muder; vegans are totally morally consistent in the refrain from murder. Either we kill dogs and cats and humans, to be consisent one way, or we kill no one, to be consistent the other way. Clearly, the better thing is not to kill. Why? For the same reason that no one wants to be killed, and that rights are universal — namely the right not to be killed.

    Like

  7. LoVegan permalink
    September 27, 2010 2:39 pm

    I’m clapping hands like a child 🙂 Beautiful story, the man is right: what’s the difference? None! BTW, human meats is tasty too, at least is what cannibals say. Killing is never humane, nor sustainable, killing is wrong. Discrimination, hypocrisy, speciesism…humans never cease disgusting me. Thank you Stacey, I really like this post x

    Like

  8. g.d.r. citizen permalink
    September 28, 2010 2:01 pm

    A dog is a carnivore. For a carnivore (or omnivore, as humans are) it does not make too much sense eating another carnivore. Mostly carnivores (or omnivores) tend to eat meat from plant-eating animals, or at least from omnivores, but rarely from other carnivores. For example humans mostly eat cows, sheep, deer, porc etc., which are all herbivores, or at least omnivores. Eating meat from a mere carnivore does not make much sense from a nutritional point of view, as their meat lacks nutrients that are derived from vegetables that the herbivore has digested all through its life. Therefore, eating a dog cannot be directly compared to eating pigs, chickens, and cows.

    Like

    • September 28, 2010 4:53 pm

      Well, actually, from a strictly sentient, ethical viewpoint, it is *exactly* the same, as Paul so aptly explained above. And, furthermore, dogs are neither obligate carnivores nor general carnivores. In fact, many dogs are herbivores, so in that sense, again, it is *exactly* the same.

      Like

  9. Laura permalink
    September 28, 2010 7:14 pm

    We do have a long history with dogs as our loyal, protective, protected, loving, and beloved companions, but also a long history of abusing them horribly, as the human race is from a disgusting, demented source more evil than good. I’m vegan and don’t eat any animals, but the fact that people ever even THOUGHT of eating dogs shows me that humanity, as a whole, was a vile mistake…should never have been inflicted on the animals of this planet. I truly believe, however, that we will all reap what we’ve sown here. No other purpose for life as human beings makes any sense. Many people should be very, very afraid, but their arrogance and deliberate ignorance stand in the way.

    Like

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