Getting back to my roots here, in a manner of speaking. I was inspired by a recent article about the supply and demand of the meat industry.
The point of the article is that the current meat industry exists as it does because consumers demanded it. Meat has long been a status symbol, and the people of the United States went a little nuts when they could produce a lot of it, and then eat it for cheap.
Let this sum it up:
Ultimately… there is a fundamental disconnect in the way many of us view meat. We want it; we want it cheaply; we want it made in a place where we don’t have to deal with the sights and sounds of slaughtering animals; and we don’t want it to come from factory farms. Something… has to give.
When I started getting a sense of that fact a few years back, I wanted out. I characterize myself as a vegetarian, though the technical term is pescetarian (as I eat seafood on occasion, and yes, I know there are issues with the fishies. Baby steps.). Really technical term – ovo semi-lacto pescetarian. But in social practice, “vegetarian, light on the cheese” is the safer, easier way to go.
My status and thinking on the whole movement have evolved. I’ve not only learned to eat a different way, but I’ve discovered names like Micheal Pollan, had some level of influence on family members and toyed with doing a 180 and hunting.
Case in point:
This is me deciding to go vegetarian.
This is me one year in to vegetarianism.
This is me pondering after two and one-half years of vegetarianism.
In re-reading these, I feel pretty good about my thought processes. Seems as though, at the core, my ideals are about the same. Lately, however, in the spirit of actually trying to do something helpful for those around me, I’ve striven to adopt a spiel that emphasizes clean, healthy eating in conversations with the curious. Most people aren’t going to be vegetarian, but most could benefit from a cleaner diet.
When you get right down to it, it’s not just about health or animal rights. It’s about the fundamental disconnect we have with our food. Now, I realize that we can’t all be farmers, or even shop at the farmers’ market with any regularity. But, we can learn about what we eat, and find places to make better choices.
You deserve to know what you’re eating, and what you’re serving to family and friends. The choices you make with that information are yours, but this is a topic that is relevant to everyone. Read up!
Branching off a bit, I thought this article on the food chain (for which I have great respect) offered a fresh approach.
That’s a lot of links. I might be a little bit passionate about this.