Thursday, April 16, 2009

Look into my eyes...

Another all-day event today - a symposium on the ethics of raising animals to eat. It was a fabulous discussion: religious leaders, farmers and a roomful of vegetarians, all contemplating food with a face.
I was reminded how uncomfortable I used to be when my dad cut into the roast every Sunday and he would "moooo."
I have to honestly say, though, I LOVE meat - give me a big juicy steak, nice and rare; give me a crispy fried drumstick; give me a pound of hot Italian sausage or a Parmesan cheese encrusted pork roast; give me bacon, lots of bacon. I even like bologna with mayo and lettuce on white. And cappicola...yummmmm. And Thanksgiving turkey (even the leftovers)...double yummmm.

And since I traipse through barns and pastures nearly every day of work life, I can say that Maine's farmers are the best stewards ever. They do it right. I can honestly say that I have seen a few cleanliness issues but I have never, in more than 25 years, seen outright animal abuse at any of the 100s of farms I have visited. Well, they wouldn't let you visit, you might say. Ha - got you there = I also have never been turned down by a farmer when I requested an interview or farm visit. One of the farmers at the symposium today said it best. "I don't have a relationship with my animals,'' she said. "I have a responsibility.''

Still, after hearing all the talk today, I may bite into my roast beef sandwich and see some big cow eyes staring at me. Or hear a chicken peeping while I enjoy my chicken enchilada.

Maybe I'll just stick to salad for a week....

4 comments:

Gladys said...

I have that same problem. I love meat but I also love live animals. I used to date a rancher and he got mad at me because I would name the cows. Then one day he cooked up some steaks and said "So how does Bertha taste?"

Becky said...

My brother had a polled hereford named Oliver. He was so pretty..He late became steak,hamburg, roast,etc. I think I ate one steak and that was it. Somebody stole the rest from our freezer on the porch. If I think about it long enough I can't eat it, have to wait awhile!

STAY AT HOME MOMMY FROM MAINE said...

My daughters' kindergarten classes went to a farm recently. I thought it was remarkable that my daughters came home talking about Meat Cows and Milk Cows just as natural as can be. They seemed to just accept the way the food supply works. I do get a funny look on my face when they ask "are we eating meat from Meat cows??" I guess that's the price I pay for being an omnivore :)

Tatersmama said...

I prefer not to think. If I think about it, it kind of puts me off my meat, but it doesn't sway me enough to stop eating it!
I would give anything for a nice piece of rare roast beef right now... *sigh*