Spicy spicy questions of conscience • 31 March 2009 • The SnowBlog
Spicy spicy questions of conscience
I've been sort of a vegetarian for about eighteen months now. There's probably a word for it ('piscetarian'?) because I still eat fish and seafood, but not what you might call critters, i.e. cows, chickens, etc. The two things that prompted me to go veggie, were 1) the hypocrisy argument and 2) land use. The hypocrisy argument is when you imagine the waiter in a restaurant bringing out the cow and asking whether you want it killed to provide your steak. I know I would have said 'no' if that had ever happened, but I still ate meat. (My brother, on the other hand, would have said 'yes' and been fine with his choice, so he's not a hypocritical meat-eater like I used to be.) But in the case of fish, I think I could do it. I don't feel that fish have feelings and intelligence the way tasty mammals do and if I was peckish enough, I think I could bump a fish off.
The land use thing is about how growing food and then feeding it to animals, which you then eat, takes vastly more resources than just eating the crops yourself. We might not be able to control how many coal power stations there are in the world but if we all went veggie, you'd be able to see the difference from space. And while fish are farmed, and in the ocean they are fished almost to extinction, there isn't the same argument about the enormous wasting of land and resources.
Anyway, it's all been pretty easy. I never ate loads of meat so I don't miss it that much. Even things like steaks or hamburgers that I thought I'd miss, I don't. And I've never had that craving for bacon that plagues some would-be veggies. The only thing I really miss is pepperoni. Once a month or so, I'd like to be able to eat a pizza with pepperoni on it. So what do you think? Is there such a thing as a peppero-piscaterian? Is it fair enough to just be less of a food hypocrite but not to deal with it completely? What would you do?