[guest post by Dana]
Because only horrible news comes out of North Korea:
The North Korean government is reportedly ordering more “decadent” citizens to hand over their dogs so that other people can eat.
According to Canadian news outlet the National Post, South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo reported that President Kim Jong-Un calls pet ownership a byproduct of “bourgeois ideology” and is ordering dog owners to surrender those pets so they can be slaughtered and fed to hungry North Koreans.
“Authorities have identified households with pet dogs and are forcing them to give them up or forcefully confiscating them and putting them down,” a source reportedly told South Korean media.
That report states that common folks in the communist “Hermit Kingdom” raise livestock for sustenance, but owning an animal for companionship is a luxury enjoyed by people of privilege. The fact that some North Koreans can afford dogs has “stoked some resentment.”
Some of the confiscated dogs are reportedly headed for state-run zoos, as well as becoming a source of food:
“Authorities have identified households with pet dogs and are forcing them to give them up or forcefully confiscating them and putting them down,” the source said.
Some of the confiscated dogs head off to the Korea Central Zoo in Pyongyang and other animal sanctuaries — and dinner tables, the paper said.
Dog meat is a popular food in the country, and a recent food shortage has made it an all the more viable eating option.
The poor pooches’ owners are “cursing Kim Jong Un behind his back,” but there is nothing they can do, the source said.
Kim Jong Un reportedly owns any number of dogs, including “a collection of Shih Tzus, German shepherds and other breeds…”. His father also had pet dogs.
Why round-up pet dogs now?
“If the National Post story is correct, Kim’s orders indicate either desperation or a change of heart for the dictator. In January 2018, he donated 30 pet dogs to Pyongyang’s recently revamped Central Zoo, where canines are a popular attraction. That collection included seven breeds of dogs, including bulldogs.”
I know which option I’m going with…
On a side note: I saw this description of Kim Jong Un when reading about the round-up of dogs in NK:
The kooky leader renewed the call to round up the household pets again in July, a source told the South Korean newspaper Chosen Ilbo.
This description strikes me as all sorts of wrong. To refer to Kim Jong Un as “the kooky leader” made me cringe because it is not a word typically associated with murderously brutal dictators. Kim Jong Un is not simply a “kooky” individual. He is a ruthless leader who regularly starves his own people, and does not hesitate to murder those who cross him or are suspected of crossing him, including members of his own family. Further, he “disappears” citizens, and tortures and imprisons them. Kim Jong Un is not “kooky”. He is a deadly monster.
Over at Merriam-Webster, “kooky” is defined as: having the characteristics of a kook : CRAZY, OFFBEAT
Below that were samples of how to use the word in a sentence, including actual recent uses of the word. Here’s a real gem:
Swathed in pastel satiny gowns, Doris Day sparkles in this frothy musical as a Far Rockaway singer caught in a kooky love trap on a cruise ship faux-docking in Havana, Trinidad and Brazil.
— Donna Bulseco, WSJ, “18 Movies to Stream Instead of Taking a Vacation,” 20 June 2020