What is prompting me to make this very uncontroversial statement? Well there are actually two things I have a major beef with (pun intended). One of which being the militant vegetarians that ever more frequently cross my culinary path. First of all, I believe it's very rude to ruin someone's dinner by commenting on their choice of protein, and secondly GROW UP! Do you really think you own the moral high ground because you're able to suppress your carnivoric nature? I realise that the meat industry is responsible for a huge part of greenhouse gas emissions, but did you know that the burning of fossil fuels and production of carbon dioxide for 200 grams of fake soy-based meat is just as high as the levels for the production of 200 grams of beef steak? The chemical processing needed to give the soy some much needed flavour is just as damaging to the ecosystem. Not to mention the acres of rain forrest that are getting cut down hourly to make room for all the soy plantations. As for the empathy factor, I am not ashamed to say that I reserve my empathy strictly for humans. I have absolutely no problem with an animal being killed for my consumption, and until the day comes when a cow marches up to me to argue his case lucidly and with proper arguments as to why I shouldn't eat him, I'll consider animals a lesser species and view them as food. Besides, what do you think the world would look like if we hadn't become the natural hunters we are? We would all (all meaning the few who weren't mauled by bigger animals) still be wondering the forrest aimlessly in a never ending quest for nuts and berries.
My second objection regards a commercial against animal testing that has been on my television for a few months now, and is driving me nuts! It showes someone bringing a farmer a live ox, in order for it to plough his land. The baffled farmer responds with a weak; "ehm, we have machines for that nowadays" and the clip ends with;
"Well if there are machines for that, why can't we invent something for animal testing?"Right? Because using a tractor instead of an ox is a fair comparison to finding a cure for cancer with a fictional miracle machine instead of experimenting on all those poor baby rats. The sheer stupidity of that claim is as infuriating as it is laughable. I'm not advocating needless animal cruelty here, but animal testing for medical research is the best hope we have to cure life threatening diseases. And as the daughter of a cancer survivor I can tell you I wouldn't think twice about killing an entire petting zoo with my bare hands if it would bring us closer to a real cure.
I guess the point I am trying to make is that there are worse things in the world than the occasional bunny being terminated in the name of science. There are actual people suffering all over the world, and I believe our loyalty belongs with them. One of the things that rub me the wrong way about these animal activists is that I can't escape the impression that the problems of the human race are just too scary and complicated for them to handle, so they choose to fight a simpler battle. Animals = good, humans = bad. And if they can get some chicks to get naked in the process (I'm looking at you PETA), well that's just an added bonus. Because nothing screams "We want to be taken seriously!" like a naked Pamela Anderson and her leathery funbags of morality...