Saturday, January 07, 2017 by S.D. Wells
They’re out there, all over the place–people trying to get healthy and claiming they’re vegetarians, or that they’re quitting meat, or quitting red meat, or they’re only eating fish now, but what’s worse is that some of them really believe that if they only eat chickens, they’re vegetarians. One major problem with these routines and a rule of thumb you might hear from a real vegetarian or vegan… if it has eyes and parents, don’t eat it. These folks really truly seem to want to be healthy and contribute to a healthier environment, including animal welfare, but they just don’t “get it.”
If you’re really a vegetarian or want to be one, you don’t go around eating that “other white meat” or “only chicken” and pretend like you’re an herbivore. Chicken and fish are animals too, or did you not learn that in elementary school? Yes, vegetarians still eat eggs and cheese and liquid coffee creamer, and that’s because you don’t have to kill animals to get those. Vegans won’t consume animals or anything that even comes from an animal, just in case you’re wondering about those “rules” of engagement. So please, you “occasional” carnivores, stop calling yourselves vegetarians, because you’re not, at least not yet.
Most people who want to be a vegetarian simply won’t because they can’t give up their chicken. They can accept the fact that a true vegetarian would give up cow, fish, pigs and turkeys, but they just can’t imagine anyone living on planet earth without having their “cake” (chicken) and eating it too. What’s your poison? Is it baked chicken, fried chicken, barbecued chicken, or chicken Kiev? Do you just “gotta” have that chicken sandwich, those chicken nuggets, or those chicken fingers? What about those buffalo wings on Super Bowl Sunday? Yeah, we know… you’re not really a vegetarian, but a “wanna be.”
Most vegetarians are non-meat eaters for more than one reason. First of all, animals, for the most part, are thoroughly abused in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs) their entire shortened lives before they are inhumanely butchered and packaged up all neat and clean at the grocer. Chickens especially are fed genetically modified, pesticide-laden feed, shot up with artificial growth hormones and antibiotics (to stave off disease), and they live on and in their own feces, walking around on top of other dead and dying chickens, and the breeders couldn’t care less. Secondly, vegetarians don’t like the way they used to feel after eating meat, because it’s very taxing on the digestive system to break down meat and get to those amino acids, which is the true “protein” the meat eaters all brag about anyway.
You probably fell hook, line and sinker for the meat myth. What’s the meat myth? That if you eat less red meat, you’re better off. Lie! You probably still associate animal production with nostalgic images in your head of family farming and happy animals roaming about the countryside, eating natural food and enjoying the sunshine. What’s tricking you–those pictures over the butcher station at the supermarket? Those cow’s holding funny signs in the Chick-fil-A advertisements? What they should be showing you, if they were honest, would be 25,000 birds crammed in a broiler shed, caked with their own feces and suffering from sicknesses, disease-causing pathogens and superbug infections too grim and gross to even describe here.
In case you’re unaware, 9 billion chickens are killed for their flesh every year in the US, and most of them spend their entire lives in total confinement, from the day they are hatched until the day their heads are cut off. The CDC estimates that contaminated meat and poultry-related infections account for over 3 million people getting sick every year, of which at least 1,000 die. Animal waste is the primary source of infectious bacteria, including Salmonella and E. coli.
Want to be healthy and truly a vegetarian? Drop the chicken. You don’t “have” to have it. Try substituting some fried organic vegetables and your favorite meatless sauces and you’ll never even tell the difference, except for the way you feel, which is much better!