Friday, October 8, 2010

Comment on Michael Pollens NYT article

Comment on

As a vegan I tend to not enjoy articles about butchery and consumption techniques regarding animals but I do admit to watching the food channel endlessly.  Of course I'm not looking for the best way to cook ... quail or pork butt ... but I'm looking to become a better cook and possibly apply techniques to my tofu or seitan dishes.  I can't hate Bobby Flay or Guy Fieri for putting on the shows they do.

To me, Michael Pollen falls into a similar category.  He is not a vegan and never said he was.  I really have no interest in reading about the animal content of his 36 hour meal but I have great interest in his venue of food writing.  I think the loss of eating as a social gathering in our current fast paced world is the root of many of our current problems.  In a family of three, one eats standing up dripping the contents of a wet sandwich in the sink, another eats at her desk typing another work related email, and a child eats in front of the TV while iChatting with her friends.  I am sure, as well as you, that had this been a vegan plant based meal we all would have liked it better.  I didn't focus on the goat but the experience of the meal.  You can whine about the negatives or try and find the positives.  Social eating, in my humble opinion, is all positive.  Eating animals, to me of course, is not.

I also think that personal feelings aside, Michael Pollen has opened more eyes regarding our current American junk diet and probably saved as many cows collectively as any one of us individually going vegan.  You cannot read any of his books without realizing that the seed has been planted regarding what we ingest and it's sources ... and it's effect on us as organisms processing that food for energy.  No doubt tens of thousands of his readers have cut down their animal protein consumption as a result of his books and any meat meal not eaten is a small step in the direction we all would like to see the world move in.  I think he has done tremendous service to cause people to consciously instead of mindlessly eat.

We can all say that he didn't go far enough and try and convert the world to veganism but that is not really a pragmatic stance.  People are NOT vegans for the most part.  We can do our part to talk, questions, nudge, prod, holler and shove them in that direction, using whatever reason might hit an omnivore's hot button, (personal health, environment, animal rights), but 97% of people who eat do in fact eat animals.  To have a journalist with the kind of exposure that Michael Pollen has say, " mostly plants..." is a giant step in what I think is the right direction.

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