When we decided to drastically alter our diets to align with our convictions, we started using the word “vegetarian” to convey the scarcity of meat in our diet. So just how does roast chicken count as dinner?
It’s actually made entirely of tofu.

OK, it’s not.
The vegetarian label is more a matter of social convenience. I mean, it’s much easier to say “vegetarian” than to explain that we:

-don’t eat meat on a regular basis
…because of the reduced environmental footprint of eating plants and the health benefits of eating a larger percentage of plant matter
-don’t eat factory-farmed (CAFO) meat
because of the devaluation of the animals, harm to the environment, and compromised nutrition of the product
We also try to:
-eat local foods
to support small business and reduce the environmental impact of transportation
-avoid processed foods
…to gain the nutritional benefits of a natural diet
Phew. Are you still reading?
All that was to say that since this chicken lived a happy, healthy life under the care of Alex’s mother, consumed minimal environmental resources, was slaughtered ethically by a small-town butcher, and was consumed to mark the occasion of the Colts eminent demise of the Patriots, he was kosher.
Does that count as vegetarian? :)
(Wikipedia says we are actually “flexitarian” -- maybe we’ll try that term if it ever becomes part of the common lexicon…)
Ethical eating is a hot topic these days, and there is a wealth of source information on the subject. If you’re interested, we’ve been inspired by the following:
Food, Inc.
King Corn
Food Matters (Mark Bittman)
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle (Barbara Kingsolver)


Leah said... @ November 29, 2009 at 1:59 PM

I like how you drop kosher right into this. There are actually debates right now about whether or not to change the rules of kashrut (Jewish dietary laws) to include provisions about the ethical treatment of workers in the meat business. This after a bust of illegal immigrants at a major kosher chicken plant in Iowa or something. I think it's a really interesting idea, to extend our understanding of ethical consumption to include not just the animals but also the workers who produce our food. Anyway, I'm too lazy to look up links for this post, but thought I'd comment nonetheless!

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