From Sina Weibo:
@小野妹子学吐槽: Japan‘s top-rate tear-jerking show: Have 36 children collectively raise two piglets, following the children as they first were afraid of and disliked the little pigs, but gradually fell in love with the little pigs, seeing them as one of their own, giving them the names “Ayana” and “Tomatsu”, finally raising them until maturity five months later, and finally the touching moment when they tearfully said farewell… Then the show’s producers had Ayana cut into pork chops, and specially sent back to the children to see.
Comments from Sina Weibo:
The children all cried, feeling especially distressed. As they shed tears, they said braised pork sure is TM delicious!
This is a pig and a lot of people can still accept it, but if it were changed to a dog… then the show’s producers would be chopped into human chops. This story tells us that although pigs and dogs can both be pets, their lives are ultimately not equal.
In the end, everyone happily ate Ayana together…
Then the question came, how traumatic was it for the children?
I feel once an animal has a name, it should no longer be used as food.
These two piglets are commercial livestock, raised specifically as food, never to be raised until they were old. With such a premise, taking care of them until they are grown, so they can become delicious food, is to realize we should be thankful for all our food. This is probably the intention of the show. However, given that the children will unconsciously treat them as pets, this kind of education may be a bit too early for them.
When I was small, I lived next to a slaughterhouse, and at 5-6 in the morning, there would always be pigs squealing. I remember my mom once asking me if braised pork was delicious. I said it was. My mom then said it could be one of the pigs that were tragically screaming in the morning. I remember thinking at the time that I must make their meat a part of my own body, so as to extend their life, and so I did. Appreciate the flavor of pork chops, absorb their nutrition, then live a good life. This is the way to accept [the sacrifice of] their lives.
Children: Love that comes too fast is like a tornado. [Note: A lyric from a Jay Chou song.]
The storyline of Silver Spoon, to understand that the meaning of commercial crops and pets and other wild animals are different to humans, that to survive necessarily means harming other life so we must cherish and be thankful even more for the food and other things we have. It’s very realistic and very cruel but very educational.