In 'God Made A Factory Farmer,' An Excellent Parody of Americana


Funny or Die's Nick Wiger has created a commercial parody that's an excellent critique of modern American farming.

One of the most popular, and certainly the most talked about, commercials during the 2013 Super Bowl was the Dodge car company's creation, a celebration of the American farmer set to the words of the late broadcaster Paul Harvey. (The original can be viewed here.)

Harvey's speech was first delivered at the 1978 Future Farmers of America convention, based on a piece he had written a few years earlier. He later disavowed authorship, a smart move given that very similar published pieces date back to the 1940s, usually appearing in small town newspapers.

Whatever its origin, it's a beautiful poem (especially as delivered by Harvey), speaking to the difficult and thankless work that farmers in America -- and around the world -- do. I'll admit to tearing up a little watching the Dodge commercial, even though it was clear from the start that it was for the benefit of some American car company. (And to be fair, Dodge has announced they'll be donating to Future Farmers of America this year.)

But I teared up even knowing that the concept of the small, family farmer, with multiple crops and organic practices and livestock he'll bond with is something outdated at this point. As we've covered time and again, modern American farmers have evil corporations and specialty-crop killing subsidies and genetically modified seeds to deal with, among many other issues that really decimate the image of a simple family living off land they've owned for generations, just doing it for the love of a hard day's work.

And this Funny or Die video, though ostensibly funny, gets right to the heart of it all.

So God Made a Farmer, presented by Paul Harvey

A still from the Dodge commercial
A still from the Dodge commercial

Eat better by following KCET Food on Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr.