Teens Kill 900 Chickens, Are Completely Insane – This Week in Teens
When news emerged late last week that unknown persons had broken into a Fresno, California, Foster Farms poultry plant and killed 920 chickens with a golf club—and possibly another blunt object—I could feel my adult acne tingle. I didn’t know it for sure just yet, but I had a strong suspicion of who the culprits were: teens. Sadly, I was correct. This week, an 18-year-old, two 17-year-olds, and a 15-year-old were arrested for the crime.
For reasons of taste and humanity, we in the news media do not speculate about certain things, like how exactly anyone—even a quartet of highly motivated teens—could kill nearly 1,000 birds with a golf club. I’m not saying that they should be celebrated for their animal cruelty, but there’s no question that it’s an achievement. I’ve never killed a chicken, so I have no idea how difficult it is. I have been to a driving range, though, and I know that after a few dozen swings, your arms get pretty tired. Even if we assume these boys each killed the same number of birds, we’re still talking a few hundred hard strokes each. Plus, it must have taken hours. Not to mention the sound, and the smell, and all the bodily fluids. As Fresno County Deputy Chris Curtice told CBS News, “You can’t do that much damage to animals and not have blood on your clothing.”
The whole incident is just completely unfathomable. Really the only thing that we don’t have to wonder about is motive, because the only possible explanation for beating nearly a thousand chickens to death with a golf club is that you’re nuts. To quote Foster Farms employee Antonio Puentes, “It’s crazy that someone would break into the chicken shed to kill them. It’s just crazy.”
Here’s the rest of This Week in Teens:
–Not all teens are animal-slaughtering lunatics! Just this morning, famed 17-year-old activist Malala Yousafzi won the Nobel Peace Prize, making her the youngest-ever winner of that award by 15 years. In 2012 the Pakistani schoolgirl was shot in the head by the Taliban as punishment for blogging in favor of women’s right to education. She survived the attack and has continued working as an activist; late last year she met with fellow Nobel Peace Prize winner (remember that?) Barack Obama in the Oval Office and bravely told him that American drones are creating more terrorists. This year, she continued her streak of schooling adults by informing Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan that his country needed to do more to recover the hundreds of schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram. In August, she FaceTimed with ex-teen Justin Bieber. Fun fact: Like most teens, she believes in socialism.
How to Fish on an Exploding Lake
Straddling the border of Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Lake Kivu is full of small sardines prized by local fishermen. It’s also loaded with dissolved carbon dioxide and methane, which have the potential to explode.
Watch: Exploring Southern China’s Controversial Dog Meat Festival
Southern China has always had a tradition of dining on dogs—people from other parts of the country even joke that Southerners will eat anything with legs but the dinner table. But despite becoming more prosperous in the 1990s, Yulin has maintained the unique tradition of holding a canine banquet every summer.
My Long Search for Beef in Cuba
n Cuba, items that are difficult or impossible to purchase are considered perdido, meaning lost. At the time of my arrival in Havana this summer, two of the most pressing perdido goods are toilet paper and beer. Visitors can still find these items in their hotels, but for Cubans, they’ve gone missing. Perdido. Eleven million people on an island with a toilet-paper shortage. Other unobtainables include soap, pens, smartphones, and credit cards—not that any American credit cards work here, either. The internet is also perdido: Only 3 to 4 percent of the population has access to the web. But of all the perdido things Cubans can’t get a hold of, the strangest—and most taboo—is beef.
Every person I’ve spoken to in Havana assures me that it is a greater crime here to slaughter a cow than it is to slaughter a person. All cows, they add, are property of the state. When caught cooking illicit beef, Cubans have even been known to commit suicide rather than face incarceration. Why is beef so precious to this country’s communist dictatorship? I’ve come here to find out. The answer, I suspect, must have something to do with endemic hunger and the desperation of continually fighting for survival. Or perhaps it’s an anomalous legislative side effect to five and a half decades of revolutionary idealism and trade embargoes, the sort of skewed reasoning that arises among mind-sets capable of ordering the execution of those with differing views.
There’s more marbling to this story, however. The last time I traveled to Cuba, almost ten years ago, I’d been advised not to eat any beef. Locals told me that the beef served in restaurants came from the United States, and that it was of terrible quality. Some warned that it was contaminated; others said it was D-grade utility meat, or “cutter” beef, commonly used for dog food in North America.
Although I steered clear of any ropa vieja that crossed my path, it seemed unlikely that the US would be selling beef to Cuba, given the trade embargo that has existed between the two nations for the past 54 years. But since the American government started authorizing agricultural exports to Cuba in 2000, the island has brought in a staggering $4.7 billion worth of US-produced food, almost all of it by payments of cash in advance. The purpose of an embargo is to isolate and weaken the survival mechanisms of an enemy state through commercial policy. In this case, America is profiteering by feeding Cuba’s citizens. Few people realize it, but around one quarter to one third of Cuban food imports currently come from the USA.
'Thug Kitchen' Is the Latest Iteration of Digital Blackface
Earlier this week, a hard-hitting investigation by Epicurious revealed that the food blog (and upcoming cookbook) Thug Kitchen—a brand that got popular by writing recipes in a tone reminiscent of African American Vernacular English—is run by two WASPy white people from California, Michelle Davis and Matt Holloway, whom Epicurious refers to as “masterminds.”
For the uninitiated, Thug Kitchen’s recipes are sold with phrases like “Don’t fuck around with some sorry-ass ten-dollar takeout,” and “This holiday season bake a batch of these spiced sons of bitches.” The tone has led many people to deride the “Thugs,” as Davis and Holloway wish to be called, as “deceptive” and “a lot like the latest iteration of nouveau blackface.” Others criticized the title of Thug Kitchen for its use of the word thug, something that has been deemed a code word—that is, a “polite way to say ‘nigger’ in mixed company.”
The backlash to the revelation that Thug Kitchen is written by white people has inspired a backlash of its own. Detractors of Davis and Holloway’s critics point out that automatically associating the word thug with black men is itself racist. But there’s no denying that the word has historically been used as a weapon to condemn people of color.
Lamb Necks, Alligators, and the Blues: Fuck, That’s Delicious in New Orleans
What do you get when you cross a lamb neck with a fan boat and blues guitar legend? You have the fifth episode of F*ck, That’s Delicious, which takes us to New Orleans.
A Visual Guide to Making Action Bronson’s Borek
By now, you’ve seen Mr. Wonderful’s how-to video as he makes his childhood favorite, borek, with his aunt. Now it’s time to make it on your own with this illustrated guide. You’re welcome.
Photos by Natalia Mantini and styling by Miyako Bellizzi.
Eating Endangered Species Might Be the Best Way to Save Them
A New Zealand businessman and conservationist wants to help the critically endangered weka, or Maori hen, by turning them into the next high-end delicacy.