(2) To depersonalize ; to objectify -- ' to present or regard as an object. "Because we have objectified animals, we are able to treat them impersonally” ( Barry Lopez). ' -- American Heritage Dictionary
' In E.B. White's 1952 children's novel Charlotte's Web, Charlotte the spider explains to Wilbur the pig that life on the farm is not what it appears to be.
' Homer Zuckerman, the farmer, slaughters pigs, she warns.
' These days, Wilbur would have more to fear. He'd be squeezed against scores of other swine, hoofing a steel grate floor, while growing fatter and fatter on a factory farm. He'd be commoditized into a hog futures contract. Then some trader on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange could swap his lifeless body in a millisecond.
' If you could carve one second into a thousand slices, just one of those slices would be a millisecond and about how quickly you could trade dead Wilbur. The trader wouldn't have any interest in him as the more sumptuous part of a bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich, but merely as a medium of exchange. '
--- Al Lewis. "Caught in a Web". 05 May 2013. From Al's Emporium, a column appearing in The Wall Street Journal.