Thoughts & Ramblings

First things first: I received a personal comment from a loyal follower noting that he was very disappointed in my previous post because I simply copy/pasted out of the Time article and did not add my own opinion. My intention was to show that reputable news sources are reporting on this problem and that it’s not just something that I’m all wound up about because I have nothing better to do with my time. I apologize for any disappointment my previous post caused. You want my opinion, you get it!

Here are a few of the things I think about often:

1.) I went vegetarian thinking that I would still eat eggs and milk, but I quickly learned that egg laying hens are subject to the worst living conditions of all animals and that dairy cows live unhealthier lives than feedlot cows and are then slaughtered for ground beef. While I’d like to go vegan (no dairy, no eggs), it makes eating out difficult (even in a progressive city that accommodates vegetarians fairly easily). As author Michael Pollan said, “This is what can happen to you when you look. And what you see when you look is the cruelty – and the blindness to cruelty – required to produce eggs that can be sold for 79 cents per dozen.” I no longer eat eggs and no longer buy cheese for my house, but I still eat cheese when I eat out and I feel guilty about it afterwards. I picture the cows and the abuse they endure and it makes me extremely sad that I am so selfish that I haven’t been able to completely cut out cheese. I am trying, but I will try harder.

2.) More than one person has told me that they fear going vegetarian would upset their parents. I, personally, see no logic in this – a.) my parents support my choices, b.) I’m a grown-ass woman, and c.) why would anyone be so emotional about something as trivial as someone else’s eating habits, especially when the eating habit they are adopting is a more responsible one?

However, I do understand that fear of being different or being considered difficult to accommodate is unfortunately a real obstacle to going vegetarian. I struggled with this initially, and even endured some very unexpected badgering from some of my closest friends. (Why people feel the need to defend eating meat, and condemn those who don’t, baffles me. Maybe it’s a defense mechanism to try to justify their own choice?) But rest assured, most people eventually realize that your eating habits have absolutely no effect on them and it becomes a non-issue.

PS, at family gatherings, either my family will make me a vegetarian option (a meatless lasagna or bean tamales) because they support my choices, or I’ll simply eat the sides (Thanksgiving is just as delicious when your plate is loaded with mashed potatoes, green beans, cranberry sauce, sweet potato casserole, biscuits, and pumpkin pie).

3.) Vegetarianism is not an unreasonable response to the evils that exist in our current industrialized food operation. Yet, there are animals living on farms that contradict the nightmare ones. True, they are but needles in a haystack (literally, 1% humanely raised to 99% inhumanely raised), but their very existence suggests the possibility for change.

Yes, though these animals are raised humanely, they are killed, and as Matthew Scully (author of Dominion, a conservative Christian examination of the treatment of animals) said, “[predation is] the intrinsic evil in nature’s design… among the hardest of all things to fathom.” So, can I in good conscience eat a happy, sustainably raised chicken? (That’s a rhetorical question… for now.)

What I find most wrong with eating meat is the current practice, not the general principle. People who care about animals should be working to ensure that the ones they eat don’t suffer, that their deaths are swift and painless, and that they are eaten with the consciousness and respect they deserve.
____________________
Breakfast: Bagel with jelly
Lunch: Veggie sandwich from the deli downstairs: lettuce, tomato, avocado, sprouts, carrots
Diner: “Powerhouse” salad from Chop’t, loaded with superfoods: spinach, edamame, broccoli, carrots, dried cranberries, walnuts, sunflower seeds, & a lemon vinaigrette dressing

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3 Responses to “Thoughts & Ramblings”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    I have been under the impression you do not eat meat beacuse of the treatment of the animals. THAT BEING SAID, If you could trust "free range" or "cage free" farms would you return to eating meat?

  2. Powered By Produce Says:

    As I mentioned above, what I find MOST wrong with eating meat is the current practice, not the general principle. So, theoretically, if livestock were raised in a truely humane way, I could probably see myself eating it again.

    However,
    a) This is a LONG way off. Yes, there are local farmers practicing humane farming, but they are literlly 1% of our meat source (as in, you're NOT getting this humane meat at grocery stores or restaurants – you have to specifically seek it out at places like local farmers' markets.)

    b) If I ever return to an omnivorous diet, it will NEVER contain the amount of meat I was previously consuming on the Standard American Diet (SAD), because of the countless other very good reasons to eat less meat (health, environment, etc) AND because I feel amazing, not just physically, but mentally (it's incredible how enlighening it is to no longer be a contribution to the pain and suffering of other living creatures).

    It's impossible to predict the future, but as of now I'd say if it ever happens, it will certainly be less than once a day, probably less than once per week. But even though I would not be comsuming much meat from these trustable, humane farms, I would be extremely happy that they exist and operate the way they do!

  3. So what is your reason for not seeking meat from humane farmers in your area? You've mentioned a farm that was highlighted in a book (Omnivore's Dilemma, I think) that practices sustainable farming. Why havent you bought meat from there?

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