Wok the Dog
What's wrong with eating man's best friend?
Fourteen years ago, when Seoul hosted the Summer Olympics, the dog-meat critics had their day. The South Korean government threw them a bone, banning dog meat under a law prohibiting "foods deemed unsightly." That's the law FIFA now wants South Korea to invoke to sweep away dog-meat restaurants during the World Cup. But unsightliness, by definition, is in the eye of the beholder, and beholders are motivated by prejudice as often as by justice. The last time organizers of a global sporting event removed an "unsightly" presence from their city, that presence was the homeless people of Atlanta. If FIFA and other carnivorous arbiters of civilization want to tell Koreans what to eat, they'll have to come up with a better reason than that.
Will Saletan covers science, technology, and politics for Slate and says a lot of things that get him in trouble.
Photographs of women at a South Korean dog market by Yun Suk-Bong/Reuters; vendor selling grilled dog meat in Vietnam by Rathavary Duong/Reuters.