There's an excellent article by David Sirota over at Salon which opens just so:
"Would Americans eat less meat, and would animals be treated more humanely, if slaughterhouses were made with glass walls and we all could see the monstrous killing apparatus at work? This is the query at the heart of Timothy Pachirat’s new book, “Every Twelve Seconds” — the title a reference to the typical slaughterhouse’s cattle-killing rate.
Before you think this is a column merely about food, recognize that Pachirat’s question isn’t (only) about the immorality of the cheeseburger you had for lunch. It’s about the larger phenomenon whereby modern society has reconstructed itself to hide so many horrific consequences from view.
Calling this the “politics of sight,” Pachirat’s blood-soaked experience inside a slaughterhouse spotlights only the most illustrative example of how we’ve divorced ourselves from the means of producing violence — and how, in doing so, we have made it psychologically easier to support such brutality. Sadly, billions of factory-farmed animals dying barbaric deaths are just one subset of casualties in that larger process."
I look forward to reading Timothy Pachirat's book, but can attest meantime that as a visually impaired person who travels widely, I'm struck almosty daily by how many sighted people are wandering around--in airports, on the street, you name the place--and seeing absolutely nothing.
My take on this has always been that seeing nothing, when you can see, is an imperial habit, an assumption of your superior place in the world. These are the same people, who, seeing you approaching a door with a guide dog, precede you, and let the door slam in your face.