As most of our frequent readers know, I rarely ask members of this community for favors. Of course, I encourage everyone to adopt the Old Money way of life, prioritizing health, education, financial independence, modest/low-key living, etc.
Thus far, I have chosen not to run ads on this site. It strikes me as a little contradictory, as I encourage less consumerism and advocate for readers to focus on their quality of life. I have also avoided having ‘guest posts’ whereby a third party would write a post–with a link to their site, product, or service–that might be of interest to readers here. They’d pay me for the privilege, of course, but, again, this blog is what it is: a community, not a profit platform.
All this may change, but I don’t see that happening at any point in the near future.
It’s wonderful that the books are selling. It’s even better that people feel like they’re benefiting from the content. The highest compliment is when I learn that someone has handed a copy down to the next generation.
So I don’t have to promote the books too much beyond making readers aware of them from time to time. I don’t have to referee too much, either, because the content and comments here tend to ‘keep it between the lines’ when it comes to how and about what we disagree. I’m grateful for that.
But now, the proverbial other shoe will drop. I’m asking for a favor. Not for myself, but for the greater good, the next generation, the planet.
I wanted to ask if you’d consider not eating meat (beef, pork, chicken, fish) for 2 days a week in 2022.
The reasons are obvious, if not at the forefront of most of our minds. First, there are the environmental toll that producing animal products has on the earth. The amount of land, water, feed, chemicals, and fuel required to take an animal from the farm to your dinner plate is certainly astronomical and in all likelihood unsustainable.
You can find statistics elsewhere, but you’ll be wise to recognize the reality everywhere: the planet can’t support the continued raising, processing, and transporting of animal products on a mass scale. It’s as simple as that, and anyone who disagrees is misinformed, in denial, or promoting an agenda (usually as a paid influencer or lobbyist for the meat industry.)
So let’s just nip that in the bud and not go down that road, to mix metaphors. I’m very tolerant of differing opinions on most topics, just not on this one. It’s math and science: the number of people on the planet, the number of animals on the planet, the acres of land we have to live on, and the impact our choices have on our environment.
To be clear, I’m not asking anyone to wear penny loafers made of hemp. I like my cotton shirts and leather shoes as much as the next person. The manufacturing of these products has an environmental impact.
What I am saying is that we may buy a shirt or a pair of shoes once every 6 months. We eat 3 times a day. So our dietary choices have more of a global impact than almost anything we do, especially in the age of factory farming. We can’t all ditch our cars for bicycles, but we can all decide what we eat.
If we all said, ‘On weekdays, I’m going to eat what I want. But on weekends, I’m going just eat vegetarian options of Chinese food, Mexican food, Italian food, Thai food, or Indian food, or I’ll just cook up a huge pot of beans and eat them with rice and vegetables. Or I’m going to check out some of the faux turkey patties or tofu products in the grocery store. Anything but eat animals. Just on the weekends.’
Or we could opt to ‘veg out’ just on Monday and Tuesday, starting the week by giving the planet a break, then eat whatever the rest of the week and the weekend.
It’s not difficult. It just takes a little thought. A little consideration. A small amount of discipline. And it will have a big impact. Not just on our planet, but on our health as well.
The hormones and other chemicals that are used to mass produce meat, pork, poultry, and fish products are digested by us when we eat them. We also expose ourselves to diseases (feel free to do an online search and locate your own statistics.)
It’s difficult to accept sometimes that the food our grandparents and parents ate is not the same food we are eating. It may not be as fresh. It may not be as clean. It may not be as safe. We may have to eat differently if we want to remain healthy.
So I’m going to leave it at that, framing my request with logic and moderation. Please go ‘2 in 2022’…2 days a week meat-free this year.
24 thoughts on “Is It Too Much To Ask…?”
I will gladly accept your request to not eat meat for two days a week. It’s a noble request make and the family is on board with it.
Consider it done my friend.
A majority of our family’s meals are already “accidentally vegetarian” and I respect you putting this idea out there…not easy to do 🙂 It looks like meat is already becoming not only financially out of reach but also unavailable! Many of our “ancestors” also had to deal with this fact and being frugal and smart…they created delicious and economical meals with less or no meat. I would love if you posted a recipe every so often. Have a fabulous day and thank you for all of your wonderful posts. They certainly brighten up my day.
That’s easy. I eat fish most nights anyway.
An excellent suggestion! Like Katy, I am “accidentally vegetarian” mainly because there are so many other things I like better. A pescatarian diet (vegetarian plus seafood) is very healthy. I’m not saying everybody should become a vegetarian, but moving away from a meat-centric diet has many benefits.
Great post! I went vegan three years ago, so I will gladly participate. I love your no-nonsense writing.
Absolutely yes. I have started to incorporate faux meats in certain recipes, and have converted my husband to the point that he no longer eats pork sausage or bacon at all. The red meat we eat at home comes from the half cow we buy from a local farmer once a year and keep in a freezer. Beyond doing this among your readers, we can encourage friends and especially younger family members to do the same. In my experience, young people are very aware and ready to act to combat climate change.
I would like to add, having seen many fast-food chains in the U.S. start to offer faux meat choices, that I don’t know if buying from those corporations anyway is a good choice. Spending money with them is still supporting them. Am I thinking about this correctly? I was recently traveling the interstates and those places are often the only option.
I was completely vegetarian for 3 years when I was younger and I stopped being vegetarian because it was difficult for other people to accommodate my choice. I felt embarrassed when eating in a group (particularly when turning down food my mother in law made). I find the concept of 2 meat free days achievable. I won’t have to change anything about how my Dad cooks for the family or discreetly pack some veg in my purse when going somewhere for dinner. This is a really nice idea!
Long time lurker. First time
commenter. I’m in. Thanks for thinking of this and for the nudge in the right direction!
Consider it done. Especially seeing that the hemp-made penny loafers are not part of the equation. There, I must draw a firm line.
A reasonable and moderate request, and an excellent suggestion! May I also add the recommendation to consider purchasing meat/animal products on non-vegetarian days from local sources, or those that prioritize animal welfare and/or regenerative agriculture practices (grass-fed ruminants, actually free-range poultry, etc).
Now off to add a vegetable and chickpea curry to the meal plan…
Great request. I’ve been a vegetarian for over 20 years and a vegan for the last 5. Mine is mostly compassion related, but I’m 51 years old and have enjoyed excellent health. Being a vegan can be tough, but being a vegetarian is very easy and certainly worth it … if not for one’s health then for the poor animals.
This is a noble request but I would imagine that most people do not eat meat 7 days a week or even 5 days a week with so many excellent vegetarian and vegan options available now. Dinner for me is often a bowl of hearty vegetable soup with a slice of home made bread.
Can I please add to the request? For those who do eat meat occasionally please make sure it is ethically and kindly produced. For example, grass fed beef and lamb. I avoid pork and bacon because it is very difficult to find any that is ethically produced. Personally I would avoid products such as veal and foie gras which necessitate suffering.
If you are lucky enough to be able to catch your own fish this is excellent. Make sure any chicken you eat is not factory farmed. Ensure eggs are free range and the hens who lay them have lots of room to roam.
Ethically and kindly produced food is infinitely healthier than the mass produced version. It is better to eat ethically produced meat just once a week than to consume mass produced meat more often.
If you consume dairy products milk from grazing cows is the best option. Cows need to graze and move around on pasture while they can but sometimes they need additional shelter and food in winter. I remember listening in horror when a man told me about his farm in Kansas. Cows milked 3 times a day, locked in a barn 24/7 and fed grass cut from the fields by machine. This is not grass fed dairy, it is an abomination!
Thanks again Byron (and all) for a rational, adult and civil conversation on a topic that elsewhere would descend into tiring vitriol.
On the diet, we have been making strides in this direction and will redouble our efforts.
It is is not just ‘what’ we are eating that is killing our planet. It is ‘how much’ we are eating.
Clarion call: REDUCE quantities being prepared and consumed and of even greater importance, being wasted.
The Old Money side-benefits will be more savings and slimmer waistlines !
I’ve been gone for a while on comments, but I still check in on a regular basis. We are fully on board with this request and are already doing it. We have cut back on our meat consumption considerably for a multitude of reasons, many of which you have mentioned above. We don’t even miss it, not that we at meat everyday anyway. We eat meat maybe twice a week, if that. So many wonderful meatless recipes out there now, and we are enjoying making them. Kudos to you for this post and consider it done.
Thanks, Bev…!!! Glad you’re back and I hope all is well. Great hearing from you again. – BGT
Thanks Byron for your request. I know going vegetarian isn’t for everyone but any reduction makes a huge environmental impact. I have been vegetarian for 13 years now. I did try going vegan for a few months a couple of times, but found that too hard…cheese…you know… I can’t give it up! Being vegetarian is easy. Indian and Mexican are my ‘go to’ when eating out.
While I will gladly accept this challenge, I do want to caution against a lot of the faux-meats because they are not necessarily healthier options. A lot of the impossible meats use unhealthy ingredients and oils and you’re honestly better off eating grass-fed steaks or free range chicken. If you’re going to go vegetarian, then it’s best to actually stick to fresh fruits and vegetables rather than faux-meat.
Luckily, I’m already there! I’ve not eaten meat since I was 8 years old. I do eat crustaceans, bi-valves, salmon, tuna, anchovies, sardines, haddock, cod, very little dairy, and eggs, but I make sure they are from a sustainable source, and I don’t eat these very often. I’ve much preferred fresh/raw/whole vegetables, and have always avoided processed food. My dislike of meat came from my love of animals as a child, which is very fortunate for me.
We Catholics are encouraged to fast from meat on Fridays during Lent and other Holy Days. Think I’ll add a day and continue beyond Easter. Thanks for the suggestion.
Have you heard about alpha-gal syndrome? Ticks in some areas are causing people to develop an allergy to mammalian meats. This may cause people to end up eating less meat! And also, it can be a good idea to eat less meat as it would decrease your chances for developing this allergy. Check out Wikipedia for more info. It’s interesting stuff.
Achieve the same effect with portion control and preserve freedom of individual liberty to chose one’s diet, “I don’t wear a bridle well,” Sen Jim Webb
I sporadically visit your site so I’m a bit behind. But to chime in, yes it seems quite a modest request, could be the nudge I needed. Thanks!