By now, most of you have heard about the horse meat scandal that’s rocking Europe. In case you missed it, horse meat was found in fast food burgers in the U.K., which set off an international chain of blame as various countries pointed the finger at each other.
The meat was initially found in burgers in England, and tied to a supplier in Ireland. But other countries, including France, Romania, Cyprus and the Netherlands have also been targeted in the scandal.
Horse meat is not inherently dangerous to humans, but many Westerners opt not to eat it. The discovery of equine DNA in cheap burgers has consumers fuming, and has caused serious damage to Europe’s meat industry.
“Consumers have a right to know exactly what is in their food, even though in this case there’s nothing dangerous about horsemeat. An unintended consequence is that it’s done serious damage to Ireland’s food market abroad,” said Patrick Wall, former chairman of the Food Safety Authority.
Naturally, an international scandal of this magnitude attracted the attention of funnyman and fake pundit Stephen Colbert. Colbert tackled the issue on a recent episode of his show, “The Colbert Report,” and in typical irreverent style, said he had no problem with horse meat burgers, because fast food should come from fast animals.
In a parody of horse race commentary, Colbert also rapidly lists the countries involved in the scandal, with the blame/”win” finally landing on Romania.
“Everyone in Europe is worried that they might be biting down on horse, instead of their usual delicacy of pickled sheep brain,” the comedian joked.
“Frankly, I don’t understand why everyone is so upset over eating horse,” he continued. “We don’t feel guilty when we happily consume the rest of Noah’s Ark. Is it because they’re our friends in movies and TV shows?”
And while he’s certainly kidding, he brings up a valid point that the animal rights community has been noting for years. Why are some animals considered “food” and others “pets?” Why are people horrified at the idea of eating horse, when what they actually wanted was cow?
For more from Colbert on the issue, including his thoughts on Italian politicians, the potential for the mob’s involvement, and the idea of cheetah burgers, check out the clip below, via Teddy Hilton.