A customer hold a piece of Kentucky Fried Chicken outside a KFC restaurant, Tuesday, July 13, 2010, in Mountain View, Calif. Yum Brands Inc., which owns Taco Bell, Pizza Hut and KFC, reports second-quarter results after the close of regular trading. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)
As we’ve documented, the faux fact-checking site, Snopes.com, is engaged in a campaign to have the satire site, BabylonBee, demonetized by Facebook and ideally to have them deplatformed altogether. Snopes, rather stupidly, claims that people are often fooled by BabylonBee headlines and that makes them dangerous. To back that claim up they’ve produced some of the most fraudulent research in the history of social science research and that, my friends, took a whole lot of doing. For it’s part, BabylonBee has engaged in its own campaign of subversion by relentlessly lampooning and mocking the nasty little SJWs at Snopes who are trying to silence them.
In January, Babylon Bee ran this story:
Snopes Introduces New 'Factually Inaccurate But Morally Right' Fact Check Resulthttps://t.co/21djOryGVb
— The Babylon Bee (@TheBabylonBee) September 2, 2019
It is actually spot on because virtue signalling and protecting Democrats are the twin pillars of the Snopes business model.
On Friday, Snopes ran this story:
An intriguing rumor about cultural theft and fried chicken lacks concrete evidence but alludes to a deeper truth.
— snopes.com (@snopes) September 14, 2019
‘Interesting’ is one way to describe it. In a lengthy piece, Snopes manages to admit that there is not a scintilla of evidence to indicate that Harlan Sanders stole a recipe for fried chicken from a black woman named “M(s)(iss)(rs) Childress.” The article shows the images supposedly of this woman are from a 1920s ad for “Snowdrift” shortening.
Despite the absence of documentary evidence to support the “Miss Childress” theory, Williams-Forson outlined the reasons why it should not be dismissed, writing to us in an email:
“This is not to say it did not happen. I am saying I did not find this evidence. And where might this evidence be uncovered? Would Sanders have acknowledged it? Might the African American family have kept a receipt? This is a needle in a haystack because it happened so often to African Americans, who were denied the opportunity to read and write, and thus were unable to document their culinary practices.”
Although we have found no evidence to support the claim, it is possible that Sanders did directly steal his fried chicken recipe from a specific African American woman, who may or may not have been named Childress. If he did, it is also plausible that no documentary evidence of that act of plagiarism ever existed, or that if it did, it has not survived.
Alternatively, Sanders might have borrowed and taken elements of several fried chicken recipes, perhaps some of them invented by, or passed down or shared between, African American women — in the way that many recipes evolve and change over the years. “Miss Childress” might simply be a stand-in or symbolic victim in the wider legacy of appropriation and intellectual property theft that characterized much of the cultural relations between whites and blacks in early 20th-century America. Until and unless we obtain concrete evidence that clears up that uncertainty, we are issuing a rating of “Unproven.”
At the risk of being castigated as a racist, I’d like to point out that contrary to popular belief in some quarters, white people actually ate chicken before the first slaves arrived in 1619. Fried chicken, in particular, was ubiquitous in the tidewater south where most of the English settlers hailed from the Southwest of England (see David Hackett Fischer’s Albion’s Seed for details) and where fried food, particularly fried birds, were referred to as being cooked “Dorset fashion.” Again, please don’t call be a racist, but frying a f***ing bird is hardly a major cultural or scientific achievement. Rolling one in cornmeal or flour and frying it isn’t unique to any cultural tradition that has invented fire and the skillet. The real genius of KFC was not the number of herbs and spices used but in the vision to understand how franchising a product was worth a lot more than serving it up on a Kentucky roadside.
One thing that came to my attention was this, “the real key to its success was Sanders’ innovation of using a pressure cooker rather than a deep pan.” Funny. My family comes from southern West Virginia where you can probably count all the households with black cooks on one thumb. My mother (now in her 80s) learned to make fried chicken like that from her mother. Why? Because all the good chickens were sold to the local grocer for cash and the only ones the family ate were played-out hens and roosters in need of Viagra. Parboiling, and later pressure cooking, these tough stringy birds before rolling them in batter and frying made them edible.
Rather than shoot down an obviously false story, Snopes decided to keep it alive and provided all kinds of nebulous bullsh** from academic purveyors of the same which boils down to “some white people stole intellectual property from some black Americans and so Sanders might have done it too despite the 100% lack of any evidence.” BabylonBee could have written this story itself…and it would have rightfully been called satire.
And a final thought. If you want to go along with this cultural appropriation nonsense, don’t do it in English because, my man, you are quite possibly stealing my patrimony and using it for your pathetic whining, something my ancestors didn’t do.