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08 July 2006

Comments

You know, Tana, I'm a definite omnivore and a person who buys her meat and vegies at Costco. I'm also your friend and, although I've thought about it previously, haven't made the leap to thinking like you do about where my food comes from. But this post ate at my gut...literally and figuratively. I felt disgusted, dirty, and ashamed at myself for supporting factory farms with my money, and I felt profoundly sad for the animals that this world abuses daily for our pleasure, albeit unknowingly. You've helped enlighten me, thank you. I'm saying here now to the world that I'm changing the way I shop. I'm voting with my pocketbook to stop these unconscionable practices. I'm one woman, with one family, and I'm no tree hugger, no PETA pouter, no vegan. I eat meat, damnit...but I don't have to eat THAT meat. I will seek out the Jean Harrah's of the world and pay what they ask me to. And I'll thank them that they've given me that opportunity. Your words, insight, and passion have inspired me to "walk the walk" like you do every day. Deep thanks.

I agree that we have the moral right as an animal to eat meat. I even touched on it just last week in a post I'm working on about my own wish to raise livestock animals, but not necessarily as food. We are animals, they are food, death is inevitable, and flesh must be recycled. But it is still a major moral quandry whether we should eat meat, whether it truly is ethical to do so consciously (unlike other animals our choice is a fully conscious one, even if we tend to not want to think about where all that meat came from). Those against it have as strong a reason as those for it, and there never will be an answer except a personal one.

But you're also right that the "pro-meat" argument doesn't excuse factory farms in the least. They are still living animals, and don't deserve such horrendous treatment. And raising them in such a way isn't any good for humans either, whether those people are eating the meat or living with the pollution.

It's odd we can hold technology, television, and our cars with such reverence, but hold that which provides us our most basic necessity, and those who farm it, with such disdain and nonchelance. We tend to crap on what we need, and worship what we want, and rarely do the two overlap.

Excellent comments, Josh, and I thank you. The dialog here and at Megnut are very reasonable, and it's refreshing.

Very thought provoking on a very viserial level! We raise heirloom Dexter cattle. They are pastured on lush brome and given chemical and pesticide free grains. I have grappled with my conscious of eating meat for decades. When it came to the processing of our own cattle my husband made the choice for me. he was raised in dairy farm family of ten and to SURVIVE they ate their livestock. We processed a bull and I went to the small town processing facility to deliver our bull. It was clean, the owners were a local family who had been in meat processing for several generations. I could still smell that indescribable stench of death. I had to leave and sit in the car while my husband made the arrangements. I was nauseous. I had raised this animal that we were consigning to slaughter from a baby calf. I told my husband I refused to eat this meat. he said would you rather eat the meat of a cow that had been confined in a feedlot and fed brains, pumped with antibiotics and hormones to fatten up, then slaughtered in a killing line. I looked into the eyes of the man that would take the life from my bull. I saw conscious...I saw tenderness and sadness. I knew that my bull would be humanely put to death. He had a good life on my farm. And now his life cycle was complete. The birth, the grass, the grains, the soil and the sun and sky, the rains, the snows, the breeding he had done with heifers to pass his seed had come to fruiton. It was right. I resisted eating this meat until finally I felt hunger and tasted the meat. It was clean, fresh, lean and sweet. Unlike ANY beef I had tasted in my lifetime. The meat nourished me...I felt satisfied and thankful to the Creator. The cycle was complete.

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