I know, I know… the next post was supposed to be the exciting and deviant conclusion of ‘Beastly’, but I’ve gotta squeeze this in.
I have made the official decision to try vegetarianism. The date I’m setting for the switch is August 2, 2010.
There are two reasons that I’ve chosen that date:
- We have a number of visits and events happening during the month of July, and it will be pretty tough to focus on new recipes and eating differently within large groups.
- August 2 is the birthday of both my mother and my mother-in-law. I’m trying vegetarianism for both of them. For my mother because she taught me to eat healthfully, and I know she will support me in my latest experiment. For my mother-in-law because this is the first birthday following her death. She was very serious about making diet changes for better health.
I once said that I could never be a vegetarian. I absolutely love meat, and it’s a really easy way to make a filling meal.
But my issue is not with meat itself. It’s with the industry we’ve built around meat. The methods we use to produce, harvest, distribute, and consume meat are harmful to animals, the environment, and our bodies.
People who scoff at vegetarianism like to talk about how humans have eaten meat for thousands of years, and how we are supposed to kill animals for their meat because we are superior. I’m not going to get into an argument about whether or not humans are animals themselves, or if a higher power intended for us to dominate the other species. But I will say that however our system of controlling animals began, the way we obtain and eat their meat today is largely unnatural/unintended:
- We produce and eat much more meat than we need.
- The animals raised for their meat are often living on top of each other, and injected with hormones and who-knows-what else.
- Transporting livestock over long distances requires a great deal of polluting fuel.
- A lot of the meat products out there are further reduced in quality through heavy processing.
- We don’t counter our meat intake (or general fat intake) with appropriate physical activity.
Our meat is not the meat of 1,000 years ago, and we are not the people of 1,000 years ago. Therefore, our mindsets must change to reflect these changes.
I’ve thought about hunting, and local/organic/free range options. But truthfully, those alternatives are not as convenient as they’d have to be for me to consistently observe them. Plus, I’m still trying to figure out my personal philosophy on eating animals. But this post is not about that.
If I eat with you in real life, don’t worry. I won’t force you to eat like me, or prepare weird veggie dishes. I’m more than happy to share my opinions with you, but I don’t want to force them on you in practice. And I plan to continue eating eggs, and perhaps seafood.
So now it’s out there.
On a completely separate note… This afternoon I saw a documentary about the anti-homosexual legislation in Uganda. No matter what you believe about the morality and science of homosexuality, the targeting, and sometimes killing, of these people because of who they love is simply wrong. Check out Vanguard’s coverage of the situation on Current TV and scroll down to the ‘Missionaries of Hate’ video thumbnail http://current.com/video/