Sarah Palin’s Snuff Films

On her new TLC live-action show, Sarah Palin’s Alaska, Palin bludgeons a gigantic halibut to death and then displays its still-beating heart triumphantly for the at-home television audience writes New York Times‘s David Firestone.

During an earlier episode, she gunned down a docile, unresisting female caribou with six shots, two rifles and help from her dad, recounts Maureen Dowd, also in the New York Times. “The poor caribou in the Arctic Circle, a cousin to Santa’s reindeer, had to die so Palin could show off her toughness to voters,” writes Dowd.

Of course, Palin’s point, that “if you want to have wild, organic, healthy food you’re gonna go out there and hunt yourself,” is sanctimonious and privileged.

“Does Palin really think the average housewife in Ohio who can’t pay her bills is going to load up on ammo, board two different planes, camp out for two nights with a film crew and shoot a caribou so she can feed her family organic food?” asks Dowd.

It is also wrong.

Lead and wildlife diseases including the Mad Cow-like Chronic Wasting Disease make eating the caribou less safe than other meat, not more.

Department of Natural Resources officials increasingly warn against lead in hunted meat, some barely detectable, leading some food pantries to refuse donations altogether. And the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention detected “fatal degenerative neurologic illnesses in men who participated in wild game feasts,” who all died, in its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly report.

But do-it-yourself-slaughter to prove you’re not squeamish or in denial about where your meal came from, is increasingly popular in warmer climes too, often coached by gourmet chefs and foodies.

Last month, New York Times City Critic, Ariel Kaminer, describes her decision to take the life of a turkey, “a beautiful bird, a Bourbon Red turkey whose rich brown feathers were flecked with white,” at the Islamic slaughterhouse Madani Halal, in Ozone Park, Queens.

Imran Uddin, who helped hold the knife, “pronounced, ‘Bismillah Allahu Akbar,’ Arabic for ‘In the name of Allah the great,’” recounts Kaminer. “Then, in one swift movement, we cut her throat. The bird’s body went slack, and her head — still attached — sank slowly into the blood-lined tray beneath. After a few moments, she roused again for a quick bout of flapping.”

Earlier this year, the New York Times‘ Christine Muhlke witnessed the first use of a mobile slaughterhouse in Stamford, NY. Even though she describes herself as a “meat hipster who serves pickled pigs’ tongues,” Muhlke registers horror at the frenetic “wild thrashing.”

And last year a New York Times article about do-it-yourself slaughter recounts University of Illinois student, Jake Lahne, observing: “Animals do not want to die.They can feel pain and fear, and, just like us, will struggle to breathe for even one single more second. If you’re about to run 250 volts through a pig, do not look it in the eyes. It is not going to absolve you.”

Killing your own meat could spare the animal the horrors of factory farming, inhumane transport, and the disassembly line on the killing floor.

But while it is more honest than letting someone else do it, the act is also not just about you.

“Enlightened carnivorousness,” — being okay with the deaths — is irrelevant to the pain of animal, notes Pete Singer, the father of the animal rights movement, also in the New York Times.

While Palin delights in the fact that liberals “get all wee-wee’d up” about her baby shower, held at a shooting range, and her teenage daughter gutting salmon, is it really about liberal squeamishness?

Squeamishness implies necessary evils like giving blood, drawing blood, cleaning up noxious fluids or even euthanasia — not voluntary and unnecessary cruelty.

After all, people could overcome squeamishness at watching a stoning too.

Martha Rosenberg is a columnist/cartoonist who writes about public health. Her first book, titled Born with a Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp the Public Health, has just been released by Prometheus Books. She can be reached at: martharosenberg@sbcglobal.net. Read other articles by Martha.

4 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. hayate said on December 19th, 2010 at 1:16pm #

    If sarah palin had not been the protagonist in these snuff films, but the victim, they would be way more appealing to a much wider audience.

    Think about it, media, imagine the ratings you would get on a show palin got gored by a caribou instead of cowardly shop the animal from a distance. How, you might ask, she would be too cowardly to actually get close to one? Stake her out in a field and sprinkle her with male caribou scent, that should do it). Come on, exploiters, you got the money and clout, you can arrange it.

  2. mary said on December 19th, 2010 at 2:20pm #

    Palin displays the traits of a psychopath.

  3. Don Hawkins said on December 19th, 2010 at 2:31pm #

    The LA Times reports:
    Soon after Sarah Palin was elected mayor of the foothill town of Wasilla, Alaska, she startled a local music teacher by insisting in casual conversation that men and dinosaurs coexisted on an Earth created 6,000 years ago — about 65 million years after scientists say most dinosaurs became extinct — the teacher said.

    After conducting a college band and watching Palin deliver a commencement address to a small group of home-schooled students in June 1997, Wasilla resident Philip Munger said, he asked the young mayor about her religious beliefs.
    Palin told him that “dinosaurs and humans walked the Earth at the same time,” Munger said. When he asked her about prehistoric fossils and tracks dating back millions of years, Palin said “she had seen pictures of human footprints inside the tracks,” recalled Munger, who teaches music at the University of Alaska in Anchorage and has regularly criticized Palin in recent years on his liberal political blog, called Progressive Alaska.

    Mary maybe she just say’s that stuff it’s fun just to see if people will believe you or at least argue about it. Seems to sell book’s and maybe a run in 2012 with Huckabee and the little rockers. You have to admit it’s amazing to see and hear this and the rest of them are not to far off.

  4. hayate said on December 19th, 2010 at 4:51pm #

    Mary

    “Palin displays the traits of a psychopath.”

    Most of the quislings the zionists select to run their colonies are psychopaths. As are zionists, themselves, and those that support them.

    How else could a creature that gleefully wallows in the death and suffering of millions so they can delude themselves that they are superior, and destined to be the planet’s overlords, be described?