I finished Jonathan Safran Foer's Eating Animals yesterday. It wasn't easy. I won't go into the details, but what goes on in factory farming is even worse than what I could have imagined. Which, of course, I wasn't trying to do in the past. What's great about the book, is he's very fair. He isn't just stringing together horrific details one after another, attempting to guilt the reader into becoming a vegetarian. It's clear that he wanted to see all sides. This gives the book a legitimacy that a more extreme book may not have. I recommend it to everyone. Even those who choose to eat meat should read it, just to know what they're eating.
I never thought I'd be the person who wanted to convert people to vegetarianism. I remember thinking that it wasn't anyone's business what I ate. I had all the excuses lined up so I wouldn't have to face what I was doing. I didn't want to hear it (sound familiar?). It was denial (see my post from a couple days ago where I go into more details of my denial). But, now my eyes are opened, and it's hard to turn a blind eye to something so common in everyday life that I find so disturbing. It's in TV commercials, restaurants, lunches at work, etc. It's bizzaro world. Maybe I'll get used to it. I'm new to this. Or, maybe I won't. Maybe it'll motivate me to do everything I can to change it.
My sister has been a vegetarian for a long time, and my Mom mostly has in her adult life. I can't remember even one time where they tried to explain it to me. And, I never asked. (Deeeeeee-nial!) Now that I think about it, I don't even know why Mom is a vegetarian. Maybe to them it was so obvious why they were, so if I didn't get it I didn't get it. I wonder, would I have listened had they talked to me seriously about it? Would I have shrugged it off? Did they, and did I forget? I don't know. Maybe no matter what, I wasn't ready to make the step until now. Which brings me to this question:
What now? I want to reach out to everyone I know, inform them, and try to change the world in whatever way I can. At the same time, I know that I would be extremely annoying if I did that and I'd have no friends. I've decided for now that I simply will answer when asked why I'm a vegetarian. But, I won't be able to live with myself if I don't have a plan in the background to advance the cause of vegetarianism and bring an end to the cruel treatment of animals. If I were a cow, I would want someone to do the same for me. So, it's coming people. I don't know what exactly is coming, but I know why.