I was recently made aware of an insulting marketing campaign designed to make consumers feel really good about buying “humanely” raised turkeys. The propaganda was presented in an e-mail whose subject line reads: “Get to know your turkey at Whole Foods Market.”
That sounds like something Dahmer might’ve said, I thought, replacing the word “turkey,” in my mind, with the more generic “meal.”
The e-mail includes a photograph of cooked animal flesh and the tagline: “Believe it or not, turkeys (those all-American birds) were not created equal,” which suggests, of course (lest there be skepticism), that the dead birds whose carcasses are for sale at this particular store enjoyed absolutely idyllic “Animal Welfare rated” lives.
Hell, it almost sounds like the propagandists who came up with all that nonsense are jealous.
What they don’t boast about is how “humanely” the birds were slaughtered. Instead, they project all the above-mentioned happiness onto the employees who deal most directly with customers, describing their “Organic Turkey,” for example, as “Our Butcher’s favorite bird!”
(Note to propagandists: Your capitalization of “Butcher’s” shifted my thoughts from Dahmer to Mengele.)
If the bastards are going to boast about how well each bird allegedly lived, they ought to be required to share with consumers specific details about how each bird died — perhaps with packaging that includes little family-friendly illustrations of turkeys being decapitated.
The point is, since the propagandists can’t profess to be speaking for the turkeys — and because the turkeys wouldn’t agree with any of the propagandists’ reprehensible claims — those claims can and should be dismissed outright as false and ghoulish.
But marketing, in this case and so many others, isn’t about the truth. It’s about the cash register. And it’s not a stretch to wonder if the greed-heads running the machine would just as soon tell gullible consumers that the turkeys enthusiastically volunteered to be slaughtered.