Meat should be treated like a medical item? What, like Adderall or Oxycontin?
Haha, no. Not gonna happen. Humans are fuckin’ omnivores, that’s why we have the teeth we got in our heads. We have literally evolved to eat meat as well as fruits, vegetables, and a wide variety of other shit. But, fuck it, let’s go with your little thought experiment, shall we? Here goes. You did it, you won, and now you need a prescription to eat meat. Everybody else either goes vegan or gets the fuck out of Dodge. Congratulations. Evil factory farming is over! …Right? Because nobody eats meat unless they medically need to…right?
Doctors start writing bogus prescriptions for meat. All those farmers you put out of work by your draconian horseshit? Guess what, you have a moonshiner situation again, just like we had back with Prohibition. People are farming animals on the sly, out of view of the feds. Without regulation. Congratulations, conditions for the animals are now even shittier because they now need to be raised in a place that can’t be seen easily from above. Who knows, maybe you’ve even driven some farmers literally underground. The price of black market meat skyrockets, organized crime comes a-knocking and starts making an absolute killing off the sale of illegal meat. There are hidden “meat bars” in most major cities (and some minor ones, too). Meat runners risk life and limb to get their now unimaginably profitable product to their buyers. Organized criminal gangs now fight in the streets for control of territory and dominance of black market meat. Tax revenue from the meat industry dries up and what little remains is wasted on FBI raids of underground jerky dens and hidden cow pastures in the Appalachian wilderness. That’s assuming the agents aren’t taking kickbacks and bribes from the gangs in control of the meat industry…which a large number of them do exactly that because there’s more money in that than being an FBI agent.
Congratulations, you have created a system every bit as farcical, corruptible, and deadly as Prohibition. Your legislation lasts maybe a generation before being walked back because of how much blood has painted the streets of America.
In the real world, though, you could just, ya know, legislate away the cruel parts of the meat industry. Allow farmers, who most of them WANT to farm their meat ethically were it not for the companies forcing them to use inhumane methods, to produce their products with as little cruelty as one can manage. The reason cruelty in farming exists isn’t because the farmers are merrily chopping Bessie’s head off with a chainsaw just to watch her die. The reason meat is farmed in an inhumane way is because its EFFICIENT. Its cost effective. It helps the company’s bottom line, and if you know anything about the mindlessly cruel nature of capitalism, you know the only thing they care about IS their bottom line. Lives, pain, suffering, and torment? Completely meaningless as long as they remain in the black.
Change the law and place the fines. Hit ’em where it matters: in the wallet.