His declaration that the place will be meat-free “was not reviewed by anyone in the building,” adds Cara Vanderhook, flack for the Staples Center. She notes that, nonetheless, the dressing room and backstage catering for the show will not have meat, vegan items will be for sale to those attending, and McDonalds outlets within Staples Center will be closed on the evening in question (though she declines to say at whose behest).
However Michael Roth, another PR rep for the arena, seems to imply that the situation may be evolving a bit. They “will likely provide more details on Friday,” he writes in an email. Tantalizing!
In any case, this has all been fairly controversial, as was Moz's decision not to appear on Jimmy Kimmel's show Tuesday night, because cast members of A&E reality program Duck Dynasty — which chronicles a family that's gotten rich off duck calls — would be there.
Advocates for vegetarianism and veganism are thrilled, but denizens of Twitter, Facebook, and various online publications are P.O.ed. (A guy in the comments section of one piece about the controversy calls Morriseey a “narcissistic, bleeding-ulcered asshole.”) Perhaps speaking for them all, at the end of a parody video the Duck Dynasty guys made for Kimmel (above), Willie Robertson proclaims “I love yuppie food!” and bites in to a big ol' carrot. Being compared to a yuppie surely offends Moz more than all else.
All of this abuse for the latest chapter of Morrissey's long-time political crusade against eating meat, which, in America, unless you're going far out of your way to do otherwise, is all-but-synonymous with supporting factory farming. An industry where, again, in America, it is entirely legal to subject animals to a life of what amounts to torture. (Read this book if you don't believe it. It wasn't written by PETA.)
In other words, Morrissey is against torture. What a d-bag.
Remember, he's not a king mandating all villagers become vegetarian forever, though he surely wishes he were. He's asking folks to go without meat during a two-hour concert. Whether the complainers consider this request abhorrent or they believe it sets a bad precedent — first they take away my meat at a Morrissey show, next they're taking away my Dodger dog! — is unclear. (It's also possible that they simply like making fun of Morrissey for being dramatic, which is entirely OK.)
But for those who are getting all upset about this, we have one simple request: Go join the NRA.
No, seriously, go join the NRA, hang out with the duck-hunting Robertsons, and enjoy some “real American” food.
This might be tough, though, as we suspect that many of you Moz detractors are of the standard liberal variety. (Because, let's be honest, “real Americans” don't generally know who he is.)
When it comes to consuming the products of factory farms — i.e. just about all meat in this country — you can be sure it's 100 percent out of line with today's workaday liberalism.
Morrissey is opposed to all meat and animal products generally, but even if you can argue against that position it's inarguable that — environmental and health issues aside — factory farming hurts animals. Don't try to say that animals don't feel pain, because you don't know that. A pig, for example (you know, where bacon comes from) is at least as smart as your dog. And the manner in which the average factory-farmed pig is treated is way, way, unspeakably worse than how you treat your dog.
We're guessing Morrissey's critics are also the types who dislike pop music because of its vapid messages, and who wish that rock and roll was still a place for political activism. Well, it sometimes still is. And it sometimes offers messages that don't line up with your lifestyle.
But don't cry. Go to Staples Center tomorrow night and have some vegan sushi. Enjoy some of those sweet, heartbreaking Morrissey sounds. Then you can cry.