Originally published May 8 2009
Naw, Oprah, Please Tell Me You Didn't Recommend KFC
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor
(NaturalNews) After Oprah publicized a giveaway of KFC chicken dinners to anyone who could download a coupon from the 'net. KFC stores across the nation were inundated with customers lining up for free chicken, to the point where some restaurants either closed their doors or declined to honor the Oprah-endorsed coupons. KFC restaurants are now being described as "under siege" by coupon-gripping Oprah followers who want their free chicken, two sides and a biscuit.
The problem with the promotion? Oprah's recommendation now means countless more chickens will be slaughtered in disgusting factory farms that abusively breed chemically-injected chickens to supply KFC restaurants. As you'll read on www.KentuckyFriedCruelty.com :
KFC suppliers cram birds into huge waste-filled factories, breed and drug them to grow so large that they can't even walk, and often break their wings and legs. At slaughter, the birds' throats are slit and they are dropped into tanks of scalding-hot water -- often while they are still conscious. It would be illegal for KFC to abuse dogs, cats, pigs, or cows in these ways.
KFC's own animal welfare advisors have asked the company to take steps to eliminate these abuses, but KFC refuses to do so. Many advisors have now resigned in frustration.
Is this really what Oprah is promoting?
Apparently so. The promotion page is still live on the Oprah.com website (http://www.oprah.com/article/oprahshow/20090...), although the offer itself has now been pulled due to overwhelming response.
How exactly is promoting factory-farmed chicken consistent with the values and goals Oprah has so often espoused in her many years of good work?
I've admired Oprah for a long time. I see her as a courageous, intelligent person who has gone out of her way to help people in ways too numerous to name. She's publicly stated her opposition to factory farming, and of course her run-in with the beef industry over mad cow disease is well known.
The point is, Oprah is not a proponent of factory farming. She's actually an opponent of such practices.
So why did she unleash a tsunami of chicken giveaways that will result in the cruel deaths of countless living chickens?
As I see it, there are three possible explanations:
#1) Oprah really isn't charge of the Oprah empire anymore. This happens with many celebrities whose empires grow so large that they need to delegate the business end of it to others. It's possible that Oprah's staff created this KFC deal without her knowledge, or that they misrepresented the deal to her and she didn't really know what she was getting into.
#2) Oprah got hoodwinked. It could be that some clever KFC dealmaker squirmed his way into this deal by tricking Oprah in some way (that we'll probably never know). This is actually the position of PETA, which believes Oprah was blindsided by all this.
#3) Oprah lost her mind. Perhaps she just abandoned her principles and did the KFC promo for a few extra bucks. This seems rather unlikely, in my view, but you never know.
But it begs the question: How can you not know you're promoting KFC when you go on the air and tell people to download coupons for free chicken dinners at KFC? How could this have slipped through the process of vetting Oprah's extremely valuable endorsements?
Somebody has greasy fingers in all this, and it's not merely KFC's customers. I'm betting there's an under the table deal that resulted in this endorsement, and Oprah is probably right now running ethics checks on all her business reps who were involved in this deal to figure out who misled her.
So what's wrong with KFC?In my view, KFC represents everything that's wrong with food and farming in America today. It is a factory operation that turns chickens' bodies into profitable "food" while utterly ignoring the experience of the chicken in the process. You can read up on the horrifying practices of KFC at http://www.kentuckyfriedcruelty.com
KFC's new slogan is even a no-brainer (literally). It's the word, "Unthink." As if you're supposed to stop thinking and just eat more chicken. That's what people are doing with this coupon offer, of course: Turning off the brain and turning on the chompers.
Want to know how to win the next U.S. presidential election? Give away free chicken dinners. A landslide victory is assured.
The whole campaign is, of course, a ploy by Kentucky Fried Chicken to depart from the word "fried," which is already masked by the food chain's use of three letters ("KFC") to replace its full name ("Kentucky Fried Chicken"). People don't want to be reminded their food is fried, of course, because most people know fried food is atrocious for your health. So KFC has turned to grilled chicken, and is now using the "Unthink" slogan to highlight it.
But it's still toxic chicken injected with chemicals, raised in cruel slaughterhouses. Whether it's grilled, fried or even boiled is beyond the point: Eating factory-farmed chicken is an endorsement of cruelty. It's also an act of environmental destruction that promotes the enormous waste and emissions created in the factory farming of food animals.
It could be argued, of course, that eating locally-grown, free-range chickens that are cared for in a more humane way actually avoids most of these problems. Still, the consumption of chicken meat requires the slaughter of a living creature, and that's reason enough to begin questioning the eating of chickens, at least from a compassion-for-living-creatures point of view.
Only a truly plant-based diet avoids these problems, and even then, only a local plant-based diet can be considered truly eco-friendly and cruelty-free.
In terms of my own full disclosure, on rare occasions I still eat chicken meat only during traveling, and only in situations where I can't find plant proteins (tofu, sprouts, superfood meal powders, etc.). My blood type is O, so I have a need for a considerable amount of dietary protein. I've had good success in the last few months with simply sprouting lentils in a nut milk bag, allowing them to partially sun dry, then bringing these "partially dried" sprouts with me on trips, where they last for up to four days without spoiling. I also bring Living Fuel with me (www.LivingFuel.com) and mix that up in a Blender Bottle, chugging down a high-protein superfood meal that's delicious and nutritious at the same time.
In my casa in Ecuador, my kitchen is 100% meat free, and we only prepare and serve meals made with plants and eggs. Our eggs are sourced from the farm down the road, which maintains truly free-range chickens. The egg yolks are huge and deeply orange. (These are no factory eggs, for sure!)
Perhaps I should invite Oprah to come visit for a week so she can see a truly successful non-meat diet in operation. In the mean time, let's all hope Oprah stops recommending chicken on her show, where her millions of followers turn into a tsunami of demand for whatever she recommends.
When it comes to getting grilled, Oprah's the one on the hot plate right now.
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