Before I changed jobs a little over a year ago, a coworker of mine showed me a website bemoaning the pandemic of logos for eateries where the animal appears to be happy about you coming to eat it. I’ve attached a pretty par-for-the-course example.
One thing that caught my eye on the site was that the blogger denigrates free range food and the law California voters passed last year about animal caging. “Free range” you see is just a way to make ourselves feel better about the murder we’re committing.
Here’s what the article writer says:
… [to me] environmental sustainability is a more ethically precise goal than vegetarianism.
I don’t agree with the comment about it being more precise (not eating meat is an easy thing to do); I just agree with it [i.e. sustainability, regardless of its precision or lack thereof]. I have serious objections to both the treatment of animals and humans in our massive food production system, which is why I like things like Hekhsher Tzedek. But the idea that humans should never or were not evolved to eat meat is just vegan propaganda without scientific basis. I also think that our failure to create a sustainable food production system is literally civilization-threatening, so I do support organic food production.
The blogger’s criticism of free range food reminds me of pro-lifers who scoff at people who only are really bothered by late term abortions, or extremists among them who even consider birth control murder. At the end of the day, when a large majority of society does something, just labeling it wrong isn’t going to do anything. You might be right. But a mere judgment rarely persuades. Sometimes, it takes a war to make “right” real.
Just in case it’s not clear, I do support this guy’s right to say what he’s saying, and I don’t think vegans are weird. There are a lot of reasons not to eat meat. I personally go long stretches as a vegetarian (eggs, honey, and cheese are still on the menu even during these times). What I don’t like is this zeal for converts. In that sense, they who do act as such,remind me more of Operation Rescue than MLK.
[In case the latter isn’t clear, the judgment-laden moralizing of the vegan position—yes, I’m sure YOU are an exception—is a poor means to the end of getting people to comply with what you want. To the extent vegans aren’t self-aware of their community’s judgmentalism, they are imperiling their goals. To the extent they are aware and take the Goldwater defense (extremism in defense of liberty is no vice) they are similarly imperiling their goals, to which I am sympathetic, if not fully on board.]
P.P.S. I acknowledge that moralizing about free range food is not the emphasis of Suicide Food, but this is not a review of the site in toto, but a comment on this kind of phenomenon in general. Just in case it’s not clear, the author’s judgmentalism comes through regardless of the topic.