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Switch to Forum Live View Save the Planet - Eat Less Meat
6 years ago  ::  Feb 03, 2009 - 10:58PM #1
solfeggio
Posts: 9,211
This article from Audubon Magazine tells it like it is: Animal agriculture is very damaging to the planet because it uses so much energy.

http://www.audubonmagazine.org/features … point.html

Read and learn.  Becoming a vegetarian, or at least cutting meat consumption to a few oz. per day, is what it is going to take to save our climate.  Time to bite the bullet and start rethinking our eating habits.
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6 years ago  ::  Feb 04, 2009 - 11:43PM #2
That One Guy
Posts: 8
I am Vegan. I enjoy my lifestyle very much.It supplements my spirituality and offers me a greater variety of tasty things to eat than your standard meat and potatoes.

I also feel that Veganism, or at least Vegetarianism is the ultimate solution to virtually all of the worlds environmental and economic problems. I forsee great changes. The wave of the future is GREEN and leafy...
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6 years ago  ::  Feb 05, 2009 - 2:03PM #3
solfeggio
Posts: 9,211
That One Guy -
Welcome to this forum!  New people are always very welcome.  There isn't much activity  here at the moment, but this happens from time to time.  It always picks up after awhile.

I agree with you that the people of the world do need to get away from this dependence upon eating meat if we are going to save our environment.  I hope you are right when you say you envision great changes in future, because we really do need a paradigm shift in this world.

My husband and I also enjoy our vegan lifestyle very much, and we do feel that it has enhanced our spirituality as well.  When you are not thinking of animals as food, you can step back and enjoy them for the unique and precious beings that they all are.
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6 years ago  ::  Feb 05, 2009 - 7:06PM #4
Shihulud
Posts: 1,360
Hey solf! Great article! Thanks for sharing. Anyone who cares enough about the environment will pay attention and go veg!
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6 years ago  ::  Feb 05, 2009 - 7:19PM #5
SatanicStalker
Posts: 719
Good article, very well written and well supported. Honestly, I think arguments like that are the ones likely to actually spur real large scale changes, which I would love to see.

Some of my biggest obstacles toward full vegetarianism come from the fact that I am neither the primary grocery shopper nor the primary cook of my household, nor do I have the resources to become so. I can get better things when I'm shopping for myself, and I can encourage others to do so, but in the past they mostly say, "yeah, that's a good idea," then do what they've always done. And in my family it's expected that you eat with the family if you can and you eat what the cook prepares (my grandfather's old saying: when the cook's on a diet, everyone's on a diet). And, I don't think I can really make a stink about vegetarianism at my own family when I clearly am not particularly drawn to it for internally motivating reasons (I don't find it more appealing or more spiritual, for instance). The reasons I've been interested in it from the beginning have been external... environmental, in fact.

I can identify with the writer of this article... that he switched over not because it's what his body wanted or because he had a strong emotional reaction to the idea of animals being killed for his food. I'm a reluctant supporter of reducing meat consumption also, going against what I like and what my body wants toward what needs to be done. It makes it harder to draw solid lines for myself (after all, if my mother cooks dinner and I refuse to eat it, I remain hungry, the food goes to waste, and the same amount of energy is consumed, so nothing is saved).

I imagine there are probably lots of people like me in that respect, who are willing to change for a good purpose (such as saving humanity), but are the convinced and not the convincers, the students but not qualified to teach, thus aren't any good at changing the minds of those around them. If the contents of this article were common knowledge, I feel like I wouldn't have to do so much justifying to other people, so much of that convincing that I'm no good at, and could just do the relatively easy business of eating plants.

I can see it already. I've printed off this article to show to my mother. She'll come home and I'll bring up vegetarianism as the topic of conversation again, fumble through a few poor attempts to summarize this article, making what he brought across as elegant and moving and powerful come out of my mouth as confused and not convincing, and then I'll give her the article and she might read it or might not, and might agree or might not. Will I still try? Yes. But if there's progress to be made, the hope is in her reading the article, because Mike Tidwell clearly is one of the convincers, one of the teachers.

~Stalker
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6 years ago  ::  Feb 05, 2009 - 9:22PM #6
bluehorserunning
Posts: 1,754
the environmental impacts are a pretty big part of what has driven me to consume less meat.
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6 years ago  ::  Feb 06, 2009 - 1:59PM #7
solfeggio
Posts: 9,211
SatanicStalker -
I know where you are coming from, when you say how difficult it is for a person to make sometimes radical changes in his/her dietary habits when you are part of a household in which eating habits are pretty much fixed and not liable to change any time soon.

Eating meat - sometimes very large quantities of meat - is part of our Western culture.  Americans are known for being big meat eaters, but I can tell you that in the British culture in which I live people probably eat even more meat than Americans!  This is a major dairy and meat-producing country in which there are more sheep and cattle than humans. 

My husband and I have been looked upon by everybody we know as very strange indeed because we avoid the stuff.  I think we are regarded as harmless whackos for the most part.

Unless you are truly committed to making what amounts to a major change in lifestyle, there is no real point in giving up the meat, because very shortly you'll just go back to your old eating habits again.  And, if you feel you have to justify your dietary choices to other people, you have already lost the battle, of course.

And, since you are honest about describing yourself as a reluctant supporter of reducing meat consumption, then you can see that you are not really motivated to do anything about it.

I think what it takes is what we call here a moment when 'the penny drops' and you begin to see things differently.  (It's analogous to people 'finding' Jesus and becoming converted, I guess.)  And, for this to happen, you have to be emotionally prepared to make a change, I believe.  Absent that, it just doesn't work.  Look at all the people who make New Year's resolutions to go on a diet, or to quit smoking.  How many of them actually succeed?  LOL  (But, if a doctor tells somebody that s/he is headed for a heart attack if s/he doesn't cut down on the fatty red meat, or tells a patient that the two-pack-a-day habit makes him/her a prime candidate for lung cancer - well, then, that might just be the motivation a person needs. )

So, perhaps, making a plea to think seriously about saving what is left of our environment might be what it takes to get people to cut down. 

Anyway, I know it is hard to go against ingrained cultural behaviour patterns, since culture is the strongest force on earth.

But, the fact that you're thinking about these things is a step in the right direction.
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6 years ago  ::  Feb 09, 2009 - 6:11PM #8
allthegoodnamesweretaken
Posts: 11,634
I'm a bit disappointed that he did not bring up hunting as a viable alternative.  When you hunt the meat is free range, organic, and local.  As it is not raised, there is no extra carbon involved. 

all
Yesterday, in America, 100 million gun owners did nothing.
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6 years ago  ::  Feb 09, 2009 - 10:08PM #9
SatanicStalker
Posts: 719
I noticed he didn't mention fish either. If they're not local there's still transportation problems, but that's true of soybeans and bananas as well.

~Stalker
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6 years ago  ::  Feb 09, 2009 - 11:03PM #10
solfeggio
Posts: 9,211
Fishing is not a viable way of feeding people anymore - if it ever was.  To put it simply, people have fished out the oceans and other large bodies of water to the point where fish stocks have declined and species have been brought to extinction.  The world wide fishing industry is finished.  The desire for bigger and bigger catches has led to more and more efficient ways of killing fish and other sea creatures, with disastrous results.

It is fortunate that nobody needs to eat fish, because in future they will be come increasingly hard to find and, as the supplies dwindle, more and more expensive.

Hunting has never been a viable way to feed large numbers of people, either.  Hunting is a 'sport' indulged in by people who want to go out and shoot something either because they like to kill animals, or because they think they are 'bringing home the bacon,' so to speak, and supplementing their food supply with so-called 'free range' meat.

Whatever it is that they kill is hardly going to sustain their lives for more than a few meals at best.  While it is true that the deer or other animals the hunters kill are 'organic' and 'local,' the animal is only going to supply a very limited bit of food for the hunter and his/her family at best.

Hunting for food is a very minor side issue in the search for food supplies for the planet.

The greater part of the diets of people everywhere is going to come from plants.  And that means more intensive agriculture, not fish farms or people bringing back a 7-point buck every November.
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