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Published:September 2nd, 2008 09:34 EST
Rat Meat Popular Dish In Cambodia

Rat Meat Popular Dish In Cambodia

By Robert Paul Reyes

"The price of rat meat has quadrupled in Cambodia this year as inflation has put other meat beyond the reach of poor people, officials said on Wednesday."


It will be illuminating to deconstruct this excerpt from the Reuters article.

The two words "other meat" jump out at me. It`s chilling how the Reuters writer casually compares a rat carcass to other meat like chicken or beef. Is this a harbinger of things to come in our own country; will we one day ask the butcher if the rat meat is fresh?

It`s not a few homeless Cambodians who survive by eating rats, rat meat is so common that people anxiously keep track of its price.

Cambodians are so desperate that they are willing to pay through the nose for rat meat. Cambodians don`t complain that they have to resort to eating rat meat, they complain because it`s so expensive.

In America you are poor if you can`t afford to buy a nice cut of New York Steak on a weekly basis; in Cambodia you are poor if you can only afford to buy rat meat.

At the risk of sounding politically-incorrect, let me declare that I will never dine at a Cambodian restaurant.