Thursday, November 11, 2010
Why We Should Think About What We Eat
There is an ongoing battle on the topic of what we should and should not consume. Meat and animal products are a part of most peoples daily diet and with good reason-meat is a good source of iron and protein. Then there are people who live entirely off of vegetables, fruits and other plant-products. These people get their vitamins and nutirents through eating specific foods rich in proteins, etc. While both sides have many good points to back up their beliefs, it all comes down to what is best for our world as a whole. One must concider not only the humans health, but also the animals health and wellbeing. We must take into concideration how what we eat affects other living beings around us who deserve to live on this earth and have rights just as we do.
The author of my chosen article discusses her choices for continuing to eat meat despite protests from vegan/vegetarian organizations. She discusses that she chooses to only eat 'good' beef; that is beef from cows who were fed a diet of grass. She explains that this type of beef alot healthier and more humaine to the animal itself as it is fed a proper diet and allowed to graze. Her main reasoning for eating meat however, is because she believes it makes her less lathargic and she enjoys the taste. She feels that her body 'craves' meat and that humans are meant to eat meat, so we all should.
While the author puts alot of effort into defending her decision to continue to eat meat, she fails to pay any attention to other factors that come into effect when making such a decision. She discusses the purchase of 'good' beef over 'bad' beef, stating that purchasing only 'good' beef is acceptable as the cows are allowed to eat a food that they can digest. Only looking at this one aspect, it seems like a reasonable statement, but such farms are not the norm and purchasing meat still contributes to the killing of a living cow. It feeds the industry regardless of the beef being 'good' or 'bad'. The method that the cow is killed is the same; the throat is slit to allow the blood to drain. This is concidered the most 'humaine' way, when really it does not sound humaine at all.
Another factor that she does not discuss is that regardless of the treatment of the cows themselves, the large population of cows causes problems too. There is such a large number of cows around the world that greenhouse emissions become a problem. Not only that, but cow manure itself can cause the contamination of watersources and farmlands. Although it is true that cow manure can be used as fertalizer, too much of it can have a negative effect, especially from diseased or sick cows. Many cows become sick and diseased because of the food they are eating, the water they drink, over-milking or limited space. Many cows are subjected to these types of conditions on cattle farms as farmers try to have as much product yield as possible.
The main fact is, not only cows are subjected to this treatment. Every type of animal we eat or use for by-products, are usually kept under bad conditions as the farmers try to get as much money as they can at a time. As the demand for these animal products continue, more and more cows, pigs, chickens, lambs, etc will be kept and killed inhumanely. Some may question why we should even care. We as humans, are far more intelligent and superior to every other being on this planet. While many people feel this way, it is sadly untrue. Humans feel that they can supress power over others simpley because they can. We were not given anything that makes us better than any other animal in this world, but we have somehow created the mentality that we have more of a right to be here than them. An example of this is the slaughter of dolphins in Japan. Dolphins are proven to be almost as intelligent or maybe even more intelligent than humans as they can understand, communicate and interpret. How then is it fair for us to slaughter them as if we own them? All animals have a complex nervous system that allows them to have feelings. Many people know this but continue to kill them.
The answer to these problems lie within the human race itself. Our mentality that we can have whatever we can control has caused us to hurt many other beings who may not be able to speak for themselves and express their needs and wants. Its not a realistic thing for people to stop eating meat all together, but if more people realise what we do to obtain that steak or porkchop, maybe we could decrease the demand for these products. We need to stop and think about the kind of race we are becoming, we should treat the other beings on this planet with respect.