I've been thinking a lot about food lately (and always) as I try to create the menu for my business. What is on my mind most prevalently is meat. Is it ethical to eat meat? My standard response is we wouldn't have canine teeth if we were not intended by evolution to eat meat. Our brains wouldn't have grown to the size and capacity that they have if we hadn't climbed down from the fruit tree and started eating small animals. We wouldn't have straightend up our spine so that we could scan the plains for antelope. But we seem to have come to a point in our emotional maturation where killing seems wrong. Hopefully this is a sign that our lifespan as a species is long and we are just hitting that tender innocent young child phase of wanting to take care of everything around us. But what is the reasoning behind this. Is it the Industrial Revolution created distance from our food sources? The reality of meat has become so removed as to make us more sensitive to the unpleasant side? Is vegetarianism a luxury created by overabundance? Is it truly healthy? I believe that a vegetable based diet is a great detox diet. It will help start weight loss and begin a road to health. But I don't believe that it is a sustainably healthy diet. I feel there is a physical and chemical need for the nutrition provided by meat. It can be supplemented, but I do not believe that supplements should be included in a truly healthy diet. If one is eating well, supplementation is unnecessary. I also believe that foods are an intricate process combining vitamins, minerals, enzymes, proteins, fibers, and many undiscovered elements that create nutrition within our bodies. Separating any element causes unforeseen losses in the action.
Back to meat. Have we intellectualized ourselves to this point of questioning the ethical implications of eating meat? Is the question arising from a general sense of rebellion against the atrocities of factory farming? But then doesn't that mean that the pasture raised ethically treated and humanely slaughtered animal is okay? Wild animals shot without them being aware even better? Why does that seem callous? I have a dog that I love like one of my own kids. I know my dog has emotions, memories, desires. Pigs are smarter than dogs. I eat pork often. I would never eat or want anyone to eat my dog. When Bambi's mother gets shot, I'm furious at the asshole hunters who would do such a thing! But wild venison is a treat that I jump at when I get the chance. Disney had a stuffed fawn in his office that the animators used for reference in creating Bambi. Are we not wild animals ourselves? Aren't we just a pack of highly organized and intelligent monkeys? Doesn't death come and take us in cruel and callous ways? That asshole hunter Cancer came and took my Mommy away from me, just when I needed her the most (which is always). There is even evidence that the creators of certain types of cancer is in some office somewhere with lab rats to reference their work on. Do we think on some subconscious level that if we stop making animals suffer for our meat, we ourselves may not suffer either? That we will not die in a hurtful way?
What are your thoughts?
For now I'm sticking with sustainably, organically, locally, and ethically raised meat as the healthiest option. I'll continue to look for a way to rationalize my emotions with my beliefs with my desire to eat well.