Animal Holocaust

31/12/2003


The cattle epidemics have led to disasters whose dramatic representation in the media have made us inevitably conscious of the perverse nature of our food production system. Modifying animal genetics to such tragicomic results as the Israeli-bred naked chicken – for which a fanzine satirically proposes the design of a denim line –, and pushing the greed of cattle farming until it explodes through the seams of the mad cow and foot-and-mouth diseases. The huge piles of sacrificed – and subsequently burnt or buried –cows, sheep and pigs raised an anguished alarm in the western conscience. Executed by distracted slaughtermen, this unanimous holocaust reached the covers of newspapers, but only the singularity of the plagues made it different from the usual massacre in the land or sea extermination fields. Between the pile and the pyre, this banality of evil has its immediate origin in an aberrant structure of agricultural protection in industrial countries that ruins Third World traditional economies while accummulating surpluses and ashes in warehouses; but its main reason is perhaps to be found in the disdain for human and animal life which allows us to go past the head of the ox and the face of the suicide without looking back...[+]