The Des Moines, Iowa-based National Pork Board has come up with a new slogan: "Pork: Be Inspired." As The Los Angeles Times noted:
The Des Moines-based industry group, which unveiled that tasty little morsel Friday, is getting ready to throw some hefty cash behind its marketing makeover -- to the tune of more than $11 million for an advertising campaign that will include print, TV and online ads.
The National Pork Board is going all out, leaving no stone unturned, bombarding the American public with its campaign to promote "the other white meat." Their website, PorkBeInspired.com, notes:
The new, fully integrated campaign features an updated look and feel, along with a new consumer target: the more than 82 million Americans whoalready cook, eat and love pork. Moving from a functional to a more emotional positioning, the campaign voice is proud, energetic, approachable and unapologetically optimistic about the unique attributes of the world's most popular protein.
What those 82 million Americans really need to know is that their dietary choices are causing enormous amounts of suffering. They are perpetuating a system based on violence and mass murder. The victims are beautiful, intelligent, sentient beings who are ripped away from their families at a young age, placed in a stark and cold environment, force-fed and butchered in the prime of life.
What those 82 million Americans - and all other people elsewhere in the world who eat pork - must realize is that billions of pigs live the last months and weeks of their lives in fear and anxiety, and their lives are cut short by a brutal and impersonal and profit-driven system.
I've posted a video (above) that is extremely hard to watch. It is a film of South Koreans burying pigs alive, which the government there has been doing since the fall due to an epidemic of foot and mouth disease. The South Korean government had the opportunity to vaccinate the pigs, which would have prevented them from getting foot and mouth disease. But vaccinations cost money, and the bottom line for those who slaughter these precious beings is money. Money, money, money.
The mass murders of innocent pigs in South Korea is but the latest outrage committed against these extraordinary creatures. Even as I write this, sentient beings are being buried by the thousands - ultimately, more than a million to date - and the last thing they ever experience is being packed into a huge, open pit with their fellow pigs and then having tons of dirt dumped over them as they scream in terror.
This evil action is the ultimate manifestation of pigs being reduced to commodities, to figures on a profit and loss statement.
That's what the 82 million Americans being targeted by the National Pork Board - and all the other people who eat pork in all of the other countries of the world - need to hear.
If you really want to be inspired, go vegan. There is a story about the brilliant novelist Franz Kafka (pictured left) visiting an aquarium in Berlin shortly after he became a vegetarian. Kakfa peered through the glass at the extraordinary beings swimming gracefully in the water. He smiled and said, "Now I can look at you in peace; I don't eat you anymore."
Feel the beauty of those words. Now I can look at you in peace; I don't eat you anymore.
The optimist in me likes to hope that if those 82 million people could spend time with pigs, see their dignity and their love for life and their yearning to be free, they would say the same thing that Kafka said in that Berlin aquarium a hundred years ago when he finally set himself free.