Saturday, January 30, 2010

Sesame Street's "I Am Chicken!"

It is one of our "favorite" themes, the way the Movement seeks to influence the minds of children. Today's example is the I Am Chicken musical number, from the maybe-not-so-innocuous-after-all Sesame Street.
I am chicken, hear me squawk
Hear me crow and hear me bawk!
Watch me rule my roost and strut around my coop!

People say I’ve got great legs
And they’re nuts about my eggs
And when they’re sick they gobble down my soup!

Yes! I am proud of the way I peck and scratch
I am plucked, I am loud
Just don’t count me ‘til I hatch!

I’m nutritious, I am pure.
I’m delicious, I’m cocksure
I am tender, I’m exceptional
I am chicken!

I am chicken, I’m not scared
‘Cause I’m always well prepared
And I feed all kinds of people every day!

I can cackle with the best
And I’ll tackle any test
Knowing even when I’m down I’m still Grade A!

No! I’m no dumb cluck
And I won’t throw in the towel.
I’m no turkey, I’m no duck,
I’m the fairest of the fowl!

I am tasteful to the end
I’m your finest feathered friend
I am plucky, I’m unflappable
I am chicken!
What, we must ask, bellowing at the very heavens, is the point of this? We suppose it could be nothing more sinister than satisfying children's well-known love of Helen Reddy song parodies, but we are skeptical.

The lyrics, while sporadically cute and clever, appear explicitly designed to emphasize the lowly status of chickens. Yes, chickens are proud and unflappable, but their primary purpose—a purpose celebrated by the chickens themselves—is to be turned into meat, to "feed all kinds of people every day."

So Sesame Street, the main thoroughfare of a city dedicated to strengthening children's notions of acceptance, equality, and goodness, has undertaken to indoctrinate children in the disposability of chickens and, by extension, all "food" animals.

It is pure, distilled suicidefoodism: the animals sing (literally!) about their place in the web of life, praising their permanent and inalienable standing as objects, adored for the versatility of their exploitation. Their legs, their eggs, their soup-ready flesh! Everything about them—especially everything that issues from their bodies—is praise-worthy.

That sound you hear is the budding empathy of the program's young viewers as it shrivels and implodes with a tiny pop.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Not Sesame Street! :'(
Maybe growing up on that is why it took me 30 years to stop eating chickens?

radicalmom said...

how old is this clip?

Desdemona said...

I love Sesame Street, but I do remember this being on when my kids were little and thinking "What the hell?"

Anonymous said...

Hm, maybe 5 nooses. Ye gods, I must go pop my eardrums with a sharp stick!

Anonymous said...

Seriously, can you think of a purpose for the domesticated chicken other than being eaten and making eggs to be eaten?

Becci said...

This makes me sad. :(

Princess Poochie said...

Yes, Anon, living their own lives and not being used and abused for human desires and food. Idiot.

Tyrvald said...

People say I’ve got great legs
I’m delicious, I’m cocksure
No! I’m no dumb cluck

Sesame Street teaches that women with great legs are delicious and sure about your cock? They aren't dumb fucks, just like to be eaten... is this for real? I can't remember anything this atrocious from my childhood!