Several years ago, I was outside Denver Colorado and noticed a billboard that said, “Why love one and eat the other?” An analogous sign can be found at Mercy for Animals. It shows a picture of a dog and a pig, with the question, why love one and eat the other?
It is an ingenious marketing ploy. Exploit the American public’s idolatrous view of their pets in an attempt to exploit their view of fair play and adopt a meatless diet. [NBC New reports 7/12/2015 that Americans will spend more than 60 billion dollars on their pets]. But as usual, it is yet another example of how animal rights protest industry advocates miss the point (for another example of how the point is missed click here).
They want to argue that a dog is morally equivalent to a pig. In one sense they are correct. A pig is of no lesser moral value than a dog. The only reason why American’s don’t eat dog is because of a cultural bias or less pejoratively, preference. This is why I contend that the point of the sign for Christians is to understand that eating a dog is equivalent to eating a pig. God says we are free to eat both. If you condemn eating dogs, then perhaps the reason for your opinion stems from cultural bigotry that you haven’t repented of yet.
Now I can certainly understand why people would be apprehensive of eating their own dog. The bond, despite the Stockholm Syndrome elements of the relationship, can be emotionally painful and understandably so. My point is simply to note that all things being equal, there is nothing wrong with eating dogs. Now that being said, of course, I am not referring to eating dogs that are owned by someone else. Eating your neighbor’s dog would constitute theft just as much as eating your neighbor’s steer. But there is no moral problem (as far as God is concerned) to raise a dog and then eat him just as we raise cattle and eat them. If you think there is a problem with that, then you should take up your problem with Jesus who had declared all foods clean (Mk 7:19). Remember, what we eat is determined by culture. Christ wants us to avoid cultural bigotry when it comes to diet, unless that culture involves cannibalism.