Can’t ya take a joke?!?!

onion-newsI sometimes enjoy the irreverent satirical humor of The Onion and its competitor The Daily Currant.

Problem is, some people just don’t get the joke.

Several times recently I’ve needed to point out that articles being shared all over social media with accompanying incredulous comments were, indeed, a spoof. These are generally perpetuated by folks of reasonable intellect. They just tend to take things at face value and, often, overreact.

This sort of behavior makes things like Chipotle’s recent foray into on-line television programming potentially more destructive. No doubt, there will be an element of the on-line community that mistakes these offerings as documentary evidence that those “big ag” folks are up to no good.

When these things start getting passed around with the “Look what they’re doing to us now!!!” comments, the ag community needs to be prepared to appropriately respond, not by attacking either the burrito barons or their unwitting accomplices but by providing context, acknowledging that Chipotle’s just trying to be humorous and sell some product. Product, by the way, that is made with ingredients not remarkably different than anyone else. In fact, the chain sometimes runs short of the stuff they usually use and resorts to sourcing ingredients from conventional agriculture. It seems at that point they would just shut down to preserve their “integrity,” but that’s not a call for me to make.

So be ready to gently intervene, but please stop short of saying something like “Aww, it’s all in fun!”

It’s not.

In fact, there’s really not one funny thing about it.


About raybowman

church of Christ elder, farmer, grandad, agriculture writer and broadcaster

Posted on February 20, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Thanks Ray for a great article. It is sad but true that this company is out to demonize the hard workers in the Ranching and Farming community. How I see it the big guy stepping on the little guy laughing all the way to the bank. They don’t realize to us who grow and raise the food that we don’t see it as a laughing matter. I did notice that on their page a few people said that oh it’s just a joke you don’t take it serious but on the other hand more people were seeing it as serious. A large part of the population believes everything on the internet. Then we are labeled as money grubbing evil corporation that don’t care about anyone or anything, which is not the truth at all. Then when we show transparency they assume we are lying. We truly can not win with some. They want to believe everything they see and here and Chipotle doesn’t make it any better by coming out with videos on HULU which gathers a large audience. They are not helping the fear mongering that is going on with the food system. I keep telling people to speak with the actual farmer and rancher and get his point of view. Unfortunately there is such a romantic notion with farming and ranching and people don’t really see how hard it is. The average consumer is 5 generations removed from the farm and there is such a big disconnect to where their food really comes from. We have a story to tell and I think Facebook and the internet can be beneficial. We just have to figure out how to get people to stop believing everything they see and hear as true.

  2. I see that Chick-fil-a is going the no antibiotics chicken route now too.

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