Thursday, April 12, 2007

Anyone else hate the shirt that says, "For every animal you don't eat, I'll eat three"?

Since reading "My Year of Meats," I have only had a bite or two of animal. I haven't yet made a conscious choice to be vegetarian, or to continue my life as a carnivore. This is odd for me because usually when I make a significant change in my life, I know exactly what I'm doing and why. In this case, I'm not sure where my aversion of meat is coming from. Obviously, the book we read in class- but what specifically? The hormones in meat? The inhumanities of the slaughterhouse? Most likely, the answer is simply that I was forced to acknowledge the information I have tried so hard to ignore in the past. I am guilty of contributing to our "massive cultural trend" of ignorance, because I very much enjoy the taste of meat, but I also happen to be an animal lover. If I ignore the truths about the production of meat, I can still eat their flesh and not feel too guilty. But this book brought me face to face with all the unsavory facts. Every time I go to the Commons, I look at the options, most of which are meaty and I know are tasty, but as soon as I think about putting the food into my mouth and chewing it, I decide to just go with a vegetarian option. No images of bloody animals run through my mind, or thoughts of hormones- I just can't seem to eat it. I suppose my subconscious is making my choice for me. However, I am not sure I want to give up steak, or roast chicken forever, and at the same time, I can't seem to break out of my deviation from my normal diet. Today, I was really craving meat. Craving it. But I was disappointed in myself at the thought of going back to my old ways, ignoring what I now know about the cattle industry, and giving in to my stomach's demands. So I went with the plain old beans and cheese burrito. I would love to find out my blood type and apply it to the blog below, to make the best decision for my body. I wonder if I've been exceptionally tired lately because my body is missing nutrients it has been used to digesting and using, or if it's just a result of the week before finals. In any case, I want to make healthy decisions for myself before I consider taking a stand on meat consumption. The only solid decision I have made so far is that from now on, if I do take up meat-eating again, I will make a point to only buy organic meat at grocery stores and attempt to find restaurants that have the same standards. If I stay vegetarian, I'll make sure to eat enough protein and get all the nutrients I need from other food products. Thank you, to Priya, for forcing me to read this book, because now I cannot hide from the truth any longer. Actually, I want to learn more about the topic, maybe to give me more reasons to shun meat. Anyone have any other books I should read if I want to hate America's cattle industry even more? I'd love some suggestions.


Sugar said...

Have you seen the shirt that says, "I love animals. I eat them every day!"
No? Neither have I. Come to think of it, I don't think it really exisits, but if it did, (and i am sure it will someday soon)I would buy it for your birthday and then serve you a nice hamburger!
In other news, I have to agree that the meat industry is less that appealing. Personally, I was not aware at all about the side effects of hormone injections. In fact I don't think I even really knew about them. In spite of the fact that i grew up around farms, cattle, horses, etc, I had no idea.
Carey, I think we have a movie to make.

Anonymous said...

Amanda, I'm right there with you. I never really knew about the crazy hormone injections occurring in the meat industry. I feel so naive and unsophisticated. My family even owns a ranch in south Texas, but the first time I was introduced to such horrible living arrangements for cattle was by reading this book. I feel tricked somehow. Like a part of my adolescent life was a lie. I guess I should consider myself lucky for having what would seem one of the few remaining open field grazing ranches for cattle and horses. I guess it just goes to show you how ignorant we are about the treatment of animals and the hormones that are injected into the meat we eat everyday. Makes you think twice about going to In-N-Out for dinner.

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