Leaders meet this week in Rio de Janeiro to discuss sustainable development and an op-ed published in the Friday, December 15 Washington Post recommends (and is titled), "To fix the climate, take meat off the menu."
The piece, by Frances Kissling and Peter Singer opens with:
"More than 50,000 U.N. officials, scientists, environmental advocates and a few heads of state will gather this coming week in Rio de Janeiro for a conference on sustainable development. Theyre assembling 20 years after the first Earth Summit was held in the same city, and the goal now, as it was then, is to figure out how to cut dangerous greenhouse gases and help the 1.3 billion people living in extreme poverty. Or, to put it more starkly, how we can live ethically without threatening the ability of future generations to live at all.
"Thats whats on the agenda.
"But what we want to know is: Whats on the menu? Specifically, will this large gathering on climate change be serving meat whose production and consumption are major contributors to climate change?"
That question is followed by an amusing account of the conference organizers' attempts to avoid answering it.
Later Kissling and Singer write:
"No one really believes that the Rio+20 meeting will result in a new agreement to limit greenhouse gas emissions. In that case, the best thing the conference could do for the climate is to remove meat from the menu and to make a big deal about it. Everyone at that meeting should know that meat is a major contributor to climate change. It is also one problem that can be solved more quickly than others. Cutting out meat would do more to help combat climate change than any other action we could feasibly take in the next 20 years."
The full piece is well worth reading -- it is fun and it's critically important.
You'll find it on line at http://tinyurl.com/7b64egk
I send thanks to David Bernazani for making sure we saw it.
You can post a comment below it -- there are hundreds already but you can't have too many on such an important topic. Or, better yet, send an appreciative letter to the editor. Legislators look to the letters page as a barometer of public opinion -- that is especially so for the Washington Post letters page.
The paper takes letters at email@example.com
The Washington Post informs us:
"We prefer letters that are fewer than 200 words and take as their starting point an article or other item appearing in The Post. They may not have been submitted to, posted to or published by any other media. They must include the writer's full name -- anonymous letters and letters written under pseudonyms will not be considered. For verification purposes, they must also include the writer's home address, e-mail address and telephone numbers." We are also instructed not to send letters as attachments.
Then the post tells us that the letters editor "looks for concise letters that offer a new perspective or add depth to the discussion of an issue." As this op-ed doesn't address the animal suffering inherent in meat laden diets, comments on that issue would indeed add another perspective; so would notes on the health benefits and pleasures of plant based eating.
Why not take a few minutes to put in a good word for the animals?
Yours and the animals',
(DawnWatch is an animal advocacy media watch that looks at animal issues in the media and facilitates one-click responses to the relevant media outlets. You can learn more about it, and sign up for alerts at http://www.DawnWatch.com. You may forward or reprint DawnWatch alerts only if you do so unedited -- leave DawnWatch in the title and include these parenthesized tag lines.
Please go to http://tinyurl.com/254ulkx to check out Karen Dawn's book, "Thanking the Monkey: Rethinking the Way we Treat Animals," which when it was published in 2008 was chosen by the Washington Post as one of the "Best Books of The Year!")
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Date: Mon Jun 18 19:22:49 2012