Bloody ignorance or the angry vegetarian

Lately, I realize that the degree of tolerance I had for some things is getting lower. I might have said a year ago that everybody can travel the way they want because it fit with their needs or interest and I was not going to judge that BUT, when you see how destructive is for the environment the construction of a luxurious sky resort in Azerbaijan because some people need a certain level of comfort when they travel or, how a nice place in Lao like Vang Vieng is getting polluted by some loud shitty music resonating in the mountains on few kilometers because some people decided that it was THE place to be completely wasted… I have to change my mind. Yes, the way some people are travelling is bad for the environment and it’s enough to make me change my mind and stop saying that I don’t care.

I’m in the same process of thinking now for the meat and, hey, I feel that I have to share this on my blog 😉

As a vegetarian, I usually don’t mind to see people eating meat in front of me. That’s their choice, their environmental footprint (I’m actually concerned by that), their health and they have enough information to know what they are doing without having me having to explain anything. They don’t feel bad about eating meat, good for them, bad the the Earth. That’s what I thought.

At first I was thinking that people were asking me why I was vegetarian to know if I had some other reasons to be vegetarian than the obvious one, the environmental footprint of meat production. So I was skipping this part to talk more about my ethical reasons. Then I realized that most of the meat eater asking me why I’m vegetarian had no idea about the impact of industrial meat production in term of energy and water consumption or green housing gaz. They had also no idea about all the shits like antibiotic and hormones for cattle or PCB for fish they are actually eating.

So before I thought that meat eaters were eating meat because they love the taste and it’s was stronger than any environmental or health concern but now, it seems to me they just don’t feel concern at all because of their ignorance on that subject which is surprising if you consider the numerous articles in various magazine or news paper about meat production or over-fishing and its ecological impact. Maybe they just don’t want to feel bad so they were skipping it.

As I would like them to be a bit aware of what kind of system and its ecological impact they are supporting when they buy meat in a supermarket, next time that someone is asking me why I’m vegetarian, he’ll get the full speech 😉

Today, If you ask a vegetarian about his motivation, he will probably tell you couple of facts based on his concern for the Planet and the effort he is doing to find a less destructive way to get protein. On the other hand, if you ask a meat eater about his motivation, he will just talk about the taste and his need for meat (good for the blood or build muscles and other excuses not defendable if you just tell them that there are people doing some Ironman race while being vegetarian or billions of Indian living without eating meat etc…). No one is really shocked yet by such a selfish behavior but I hope that one day, when we will be 9 billions people (in 2045 according to the UN) on Earth struggling and fighting for natural resources, being vegetarian will be so common that eating meat will be kind of an antisocial behavior and everybody will ask the meat eater “Why are you eating meat ?”… I wish for him that he will come out with a better answer than “- Because it taste good” . but I doubt it….

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5 réponses

  1. Pierre dit :

    Ma semaine à Muang ngoi aura été un des moments les plus relax de mon voyage… Merci pour ce bon plan. Dommage que l’endroit disparaîtra d’ici 3 ans quand les chinois auront construit un barrage. Je suis à Pai et tout baigne. Bon séjour en Birmanie !

  2. Fab et elo dit :

    Coucou Pierre!

    C’est fab et elo de Banlung, you remember?
    Je vois que tu as apprecie Muang Ngoi, ca nous a fait plaisir! C’est tellement beau et nature la bas!

    Bonne continuation,

    Fab et elo

  3. tijl dit :

    Aha debate …
    why do we eat meat …
    can be answered in many ways and it’s not just « because it tastes good »
    (though I admit that is the main/most popular/given reason).

    Some alternative POV’s:

    1) Evolutionary advantages: there’s a theory going around that’s reasonably « popular » that one of the reasons we’re so « intelligent »(again reasonably accepted fact) is because our brains could get bigger due too the shrinking of our teeth … which came trough the improved quality of food and it’s preparation … meat with it’s easy digestible/destroyable cell structure and richness of fat and high protein was (and IS!) a great source of high energy food.

    2) It’s a FACT that if young children are to reach their « optimal » brain they WILL need to consume meat/eggs for their protein needs. Children of strictly vegan parents who want to raise their children vegan HAVE TO give them additional protein supplements
    (there have been warnings in some countries, inc. Belgium, to these parents that refusal to give these additional supplements/if necessary meat, could constitute child abuse!)

    People are always interested in behavior that deviates from the norm – what once is the norm however could change and then things happen the other way around so don’t take it personal 😉 You might be asking the meat eaters in 30y’s time the same Q and they’ll feel exactly the same Ex.: WW II; Questioning the US Army why it’s fighting in Europe is « unpatriotic » « treason » etc… Vietnam War: People « for » the war are the crazy ones, « against » is the norm.

    I’d also say based on my humble little research that the main reason for vegans/vegetarians to « be the way they’re ie deviate » is NOT environmental though I do THINK the share of environmental ones is growing.

    Last point: I know the environmental impact of the eating of animals on the planet/personal footprint … maybe a lot of people don’t BUT they DO know (or at least a higher % then the meat eater facts)
    the impact when they:
    -Take a cheap Ryan Air flight from Paris – Berlin
    -Go to Thailand for 3 weeks
    -Buy a sportscar
    – ….

    or our European government that moves Hq’s from Belgium – France and back ALL THE TIME …
    Quote: »A study released by the Green Party in 2007 claimed the emissions were the equivalent of 13,000 return trips between London and New York. »

    The thing is that it’s very easy for non meat eaters to say « just stop eating meat » while at the same time using a ryanair flight … instead of taking a train/bus/etc. …

    This is not Personal – I know you try to be as ecological as possible – but a lot of people who don’t eat meat remind me of your « modern hippy »

    « he’s talking about freedom, breaking barriers etc…
    but all he does is smoke weed, wait for the tourist bus and use his iphone »

    i propose the « eco-vegan »:
    he’s talking about the impact of eating meat on the environment while eating a thali in India on his 2 week holiday, before flying back home using 3 different stops because it’s a bit cheaper, and buying the new iphone every year to run his « greener life » app.

    Peace out.

  4. Pierre dit :

    Well, it’s been one year and it feels like the end of my journey and the beginning of a new start in my adventure as i’m flying in April to Australia and do something quite unusual lately : working and making money !

    The timing is good and the place too. It’s good to finish the journey in SE Asia as it’s the best place to travel easy and relax. I’m in Vientiane, leaving tomorrow for the north of Thailand.

  5. François dit :

    Hey guy! It seems you were gone for too long now! One year isn’t it? Time is rushing out!

    By the way, i won’t eat anymore at Macdonald with you!!! 😀


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