This is why I am glad I'm not mayor.
Okay, the snowfall was rough enough, and everybody wants their street plowed, but that's not the issue that leads to my gratitude that I didn't wake up this morning as Mayor of Indianapolis, Jim Poyser.
Though... gee... it does have a nice ring to it, doesn't it? You know the parties would rock! But hey, no, I'm talking about the Battle of the Acronyms: KFC vs. PETA.
First, we find out that Mayor Ballard has turned our firehydrants into billboards for KFC to advertise their "fiery" chicken wings. The price: $5000, to be spent on fire detectors for the public and 33 fire extinguishers to be distributed to recreation centers throughout the city park system.
Other than the annoyance associated with having that goateed old dude cropping up everywhere, all seemed fine and peaceful in the cash-strapped - and safety-minded - Circle City.
Enter the other acronym: PETA: People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.
If you've been to a large, industrial farm lately (and you must have been wearing a respirator and hazmat suit), then you know it ain't the place to be if you are an edible mammal or fowl.
The conditions are pretty awful. You are raised in a tiny, confined area, unable to barely move, just like life was for humans 100 years ago when you barely left your farm. Except back in ye olden times you at least had an outhouse you could take a crap in - instead of shitting on your shoes and having to wallow around in it.
Next, after being fed all sorts of growth hormones to pump you up
and prophylactic antibiotics to prevent disease, you are slaughtered and eaten, preferably in a slaughterhouse setting designed by autistic author, Temple Grandin.
PETA routinely manages to secretly videotape these deplorable conditions in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs) and slaughterhouses across the country.
So what did they do?
They made the city a counter-offer.
We quote from their letter to the mayor:
"We at PETA heard that KFC is paying to advertise on your fire hydrants. We know that times are tough, but instead of promoting a cruel and unhealthy product, we'd like to counteract the ads with one of our own. We will donate an equal $7,500 to your fire department if you will wrap your fire trucks with our Kentucky Fried Cruelty ad (see attached). PETA's ads will offset your budget woes as well as extinguish KFC's efforts to sell its cruel products to Indianapolis residents."
First of all, let's clear up a misunderstanding - clearly the PETA people read the same sorta confusing Indianapolis Star
story that I did (www.indystar.com/article/20100106/NEWS05/1060345). The true sum is $5,000 to Indianapolis, $2,500 to Brazil, Indiana, thus, the $7,500 (this story is clearer in the IBJ: (www.ibj.com/ifd-gets-fingerlickin-good-sponsorship-deal/PARAMS/article/15552)
Seems the mayor has found himself trapped between this rock of PETA and this hard place of enjoying free stuff from KFC.
What's a mayor to do? Well he could exploit this misunderstanding propagated by the Star
story and "make" an extra twenty-five hundred off the deal.
That's what I would do.
No wait! What I would do if I were mayor is this.
I'd free the chickens.
That's right, open the doors and let the millions of Hoosier chickens free.
Many chickens would be killed by area residents, accidentally or purposefully, but at least the chickens would be "free range" birds when they died.
Then, the chickens that remained, I would treat as billboards. I'd hang signs on them, advertising ... well, advertising anything that anybody would pay for! Except neo-nazis. Oh, and those people who plastinate the bodies of folks who did not give permission. Oh, and SUVs.
Aren't you glad I'm not mayor, too?