I was pleasantly surprised that Jonathan Safran Foer’s book Eating Animals was not preaching for vegetarianism. As Foer points out people love their meat and their proteins, I am one of these people. Presumably like many others I do not think about where the meat came from or if that animals was treated properly. We as humans eat meat because we like to, and if justification is needed it is afterward. Since the beginning of human evolution meat protein dominated the human diet, and was crucial for our evolutionary development. So whats the problem? Foer does a good job explaining the issue lies within the factory farming, the process in which animals are turned into products. Foer is not trying to says eating meat is wrong and evil, as he states has gone back and forth between being a dedicated vegetarian, but he is trying to illuminate how ignorant many people are on the processes of animal to food production.
As an avid fisherman, I found Foer’s stance on fishing particularly interesting. He claims we are raging war on the fish, utilizing technology like sonar to find them like looking for submarines. ” War i s precisely the right word to describe our relationship to fish–it captures the technologies and techniques brought to bear against them, and the spirit of domination”. (33) Even though this is more of a representation of large-scale industrial fishing, I had to wonder if I am waging war on these fish. I am a firm believer in catch and release and rarely eat my catch. I’ve never though about fishing as war, it is an interesting comparison it and definitely holds merit when it comes to large-scale fishing operations. It’s application to a catch and release fisherman like myself I question.
Foer does a good job of having little basis in this matter, even though his personal opinions can me made out he does not try to hammer the read with lectures. The gory descriptions of the treatments of animals were definitely eye-opening to me. Even though my diet will not altered from this reading, I do have an understanding of the mistreatment of animals as they are made into food. Recently I watched Temple Gradin on HBO about a an autistic women he was a pioneer in the development of humane slaughter-house for cattle. She loved cattle, yet was not opposed to the reality of their fates, she wanted to make sure it was done correctly and humanely. I stand with this view, that the mistreatment of animals should be corrected and illuminated, but the not the elimination of meat from our diets.