Last night a friend of mine was telling me about reading a book by Peter Singer. I've heard of him but that's all. After looking him up on Google I feel like I'd like to read some of his publications. I'm not sure I'll agree with all of it but is that a reason not to read it?
From what I've skim read about Singer today I gather he is a vegetarian - mostly vegan - and a strong proponent of animal rights and liberation. It's some of his other stuff that I'm not so sure about. But I need to read it properly before passing judgment.
Both of my children are vegetarian for moral reasons. Teenage Daughter knows a lot about the global impact of the rampant meat eating in the western world. She's able to give all sorts of facts, figures and information. I hope in the foreseeable future I can get her to do a guest blog about it. From what I can gather, it isn't just about animal liberation, it's about world hunger and the environment. Pretty powerful stuff.
Over the past 29 years I've flitted back and forth between vegetarianism and meat eating. Much more shallow than my children my own reasons all those years ago were simply that I was sick of eating meat. I haven't eaten red meat since then. I do, however, currently eat chicken and fish. Since both the children are vegetarians, I only do so rarely. It's easier to cook one vegetarian meal for four than two meals. I've got a great smelling bean and veggie soup simmering as I write.
You all know I have something of an axe to grind in relation to fast food chains, particularly multinational ones with golden arches. I don't know the stats but I remember reading an article back in the 1980's about the impact that the demand for cattle to be used for hamburgers was having on the environment and on local farmers in South American countries. I can only assume the problem has increased since the demand for and the number of fast food chains has increased since then.
I wonder how we'd all go if we had to slaughter our own meat. I don't think I could do it. I think fish would be okay; I once ate a trout that I'd seen bludgeoned to death at a trout farm. I might even be able to do that. I don't know. I'm not sure, however, I could kill a chook. I prefer to eat free range chickens and eggs but, in the case of the former, they're still killed. Hmmm, vegetarianism is looking quite appealing again ...