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An Open Book

Jay Chadron swears Opal will soon have a sibling.

This bugs me. Not just because I'm curious to try something that's considered a staple in France, a delicacy in Japan and a treat among Italian, Dutch and Belgian connoisseurs, but because our government (which really should be spending its time worrying about other things) is once again getting involved in moral legislation. If you don't cotton to the idea of eating some nice, juicy horse tartare, that's fine; don't eat it. And feel confident knowing that you are in the company of probably 99.9 percent of your countrymen (and women), who would also never think of chowing down on cheval. But to make it a crime to process, pack or ship horsemeat for human consumption? Just another example of prohibiting something because a group of people finds it personally offensive.

Fortunately, most bills never make it out of committee, and a bill similar to this one (H.R. 857, introduced in 2003) died without a vote. Which is as it should be, since legislating a cultural taboo is a tricky thing (once you start, where do you stop?) and, in this case, totally unnecessary, since no one in this country -- except me, I guess -- was ever looking to take a bite out of Mr. Ed in the first place.

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