This is certainly a 'touchy' subject for many because no one wants to be told what they should or shouldn't eat. Most all of us have been raised to be meat eaters, but why have some of us chosen to give up the flesh?
One of the biggest reasons I'm told by meat eaters that still crave the stuff, (even though they know the facts about the extreme damage it does to the environment, the fact that factory farm animals are tortured, and that peer reviewed studies have determined that meat eating is just not good for your health), is that is just plain"TASTES TOO GOOD."
So let us discuss this calmly but honestly, Why have you chosen to give up meat or NOT?
Coca is the main crop, but there are (or at least were, not that long ago) also large marijuana plantations, especially in Colombia - although I can't remember how much is/was exported to the States.
I had a collection of links to interesting articles and studies on the human and environmental costs of narcotraffic in Latin America, but sadly it seems that folder is gone. This topic probably deserves its own discussion.
My weed does come from a local source :)
I don't grow it personally, but I know where comes from. Pot is semi-legal in California, so as far as I know, people don't really buy it from 'dealers' anymore. At least people that I know..
I pretty much agree with you 100%. My major pet peeves with our Western governments is for every one of us who chooses to not reproduce, our government sees as an excuse to import yet more cheap labor/production units from third world countries.
I would like to see our countries' populations capped off. now.
that's still WAY too many! Hopefully some virus comes around and takes us back down to no more than a half billion or so, cuz obviously there will never be enough of us refusing to procreate. Humans are not sardines! :)
It's underway. Through my long life I've served a collection of scientists who wished to make the world a better place. Unfortunately there's always a tuxedo-clad moron or some other irritatingly handsome guy to spoil the party and foil the master plan a couple seconds before it comes to fruition. But I'm confident this one will be the one.
Misty, I noticed that no one specifically commented on your comment... As far as I can determine, you've got your shit together and there really isn't more to be said.
You are thoroughly aware of the environmental and ethical issues concerning eating meat, and are making the right choices for you.
I choose not to eat meat for all the issues you elaborated on, but even if I could buy from a local farmer who ethically raised their animals for slaughter, I still wouldn't eat them... Given the availability and variety of food other than meat to eat, I simply don't require flesh in my diet. Sure it tastes good, but lots of other things do to, so I don't feel deprived most of the time. Honestly, I just don't want to know that an animal died just so that I could cook it up for dinner regardless. At the same time, I can absolutely respect that you choose to still eat meat, particularly given that you are choosing meat from the most humane of animal farms.
I'm not as cavalier as you about our unique living planet, and find myself simply unable to just sit back and witness humans bringing about it's destruction (not implying that you do), even though I do believe we ultimately will... Despite my pessimistic outlook, I am compelled to try to do what I can to live as sustainably as I can, and encourage others to do the same. As a living organism I cannot attach myself to the workings of the cold universe, the inevitability of extinction, and the planet's ultimate return to the stardust from which it originated... I am too enamored with the 'miracle' of my own existence and all life, to give up the fight regardless of it's futility.
Thinking that I probably have 15 - 20 years left at best, hopefully in reasonable health, I can do nothing but plug away to the bitter end...
Well damn.. if the world is ending, the universe is destined to be rebirthed, and YOU my dear.. only have 15-20 years left, I'd suggest you eat, smoke, dance, drink and enjoy anything and everything while you can!
Obviously knowing you ARE making a difference by living the life you do brings you more of that joy than a big juicy steak ever will, so I suppose we are on the same page.
I greatly admire anyone that can resist bacon by applying enough moral fortitude to put their ideals first.
A really great book that influenced a lot of my thinking was David Quinn's "Ishmael."
I probably didn't come to the conclusion that the author wanted me to, but it's still a great read for veggies and flesh eaters alike.
I do intend to 'live it up' and embrace the life I have left... Part of what that means for me, is doing more for others, giving back some of the joy and wisdom I've acquired over my lifetime.
I already have Ishmael on my "wish list' ... Looks like I'll have to move it up on my list. Thanks Misty.
May I also HIGHLY recommend you view the outstanding documentary EARTHLINGS, you can see it for free HERE: It should be required viewing for all meat eaters and vegetarians.
Here is the trailer:
Another interesting documentary that I watched last night is Victorian Farm.
"Historical observational documentary series following a team who live the life of Victorian farmers for a year. Wearing period clothes and using only the materials that would have been available in 1885."
Having always lived in a urban setting, seeing how animals were treated and bred for slaughter during this time period, was both interesting and educational. If the lives of farm animals today, resembled the way farm animals lived then, I don't think I'd be concerned about those choosing to eat meat. Far more sustainable, every part of the animal was used and appreciated. Life was hard, for both the people and the animals, everyone had to do their part. Good viewing so do check it out.
I grew up in a non agribusiness farming/fishing town, small single family sustenance farming and fishing. I was raised on eggs from 10 chickens, 1 beef/yr that was personally slaughtered for my family, which my whole family shared the packaging labor, one deer/moose per year and all the lobster and mussels and smelt our family could catch. Plus we had a huge garden. One neighbor had a small orchard, another neighbor had a rasperry patch, and fiddleheads & mushrooms abounded in our forests. It was a youth filled with the promise of healthy food. Junk food was a rarity.
It is how humanity should live, but to live that way our countries must end all growth, and go back a few decades of filthy living.