But the government says it's because a survey shows the prisoners don't like pork.
“Why keep pushing food that people don’t want to eat?” asked Edmond Ross, a spokesman for the prison bureau. “Pork has been the lowest-rated food by inmates for several years"...
“I find it hard to believe that a survey would have found a majority of any population saying, ‘No thanks, I don’t want any bacon,'” said Dave Warner, a spokesman for the Washington-based trade association, which represents the nation’s hog farmers....
Warner said pork is healthy and economical.... "Not to throw beef under the bus, but we cost a lot less than beef.”Why don't they just admit they're doing it to accommodate religion and it's easier to have one rule that works for everyone than to bother with the complexity of alternative meals for the minority who must avoid pig products?
The prison system has long made accommodations for Muslims and Jews by providing alternatives to pork and halal and kosher foods. Ross declined to say whether there has been an increase in Muslim or Jewish inmates in recent years and whether that may have factored into the survey responses.The government won't own up to its accommodation of religion because it's afraid of criticism by Islamophobes? I would think that criticism could be advantageously leveraged by this administration. I think this administration is more worried about getting seen accommodating religion when it's fighting against accommodation on other fronts, notably same-sex marriage, abortion, and birth control.
“In general we welcome the change because it’s facilitating the accommodation of Muslim inmates,” said Ibrahim Hooper, a spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the country’s largest Muslim civil rights advocacy group. “We hope it’s not an indication of an increasing number of Muslims in the prison system.”
Hooper predicted that anti-Islam groups would spin the decision into a case of the federal government acting under pressure from Muslims. “This is just the kind of thing that drives them crazy,” he said. “It will stoke the fires of Islamophobia based on the usual conspiracy theories.”
But come on, don't lie. Prisoners don't like bacon?! That's about the most ludicrously unbelievable thing I've ever heard the government say.