...to urge Smithfield Foods to demand that Murphy Family Ventures fire all the workers responsible for this cruelty and work with PETA to enact meaningful animal welfare reforms. Also, tell Smithfield that while it's good that it has promised to phase out the use of gestation crates at its own farms, the company needs to make the transition faster and require independent suppliers to phase out these cruel devices too.
I sent the requested email, and I'm very glad I did. I told my spouse a little about this action I'd just taken, and he stands where I stood for years: I know terrible things happen, but what can I do about it? I replied that I learned today from PETA that my becoming a vegetarian, just me, saves the lives of approximately 100 animals (meat and poultry) a year. That is significant!
And so here I am in my 4th week of vegetarian, nearly vegan, eating, and I am thriving. Okay, I am still trying to stick to a decent amount of calories and not over-carb, but I am doing it. This morning we had breakfast on the road, and I had 2 pecan pancakes and a half a bowl of oatmeal with banana slices and a little milk. I was aiming to enjoy the pancakes without ending up in a low-sugar crash hours later. I think the oatmeal and milk helped mitigate the crash, but eventually it came. About 3 hours later I started getting the low-sugar shakes. I ate a slice of veggie cheese and a granola bar with a little natural peanut butter on it. I'm good to go now, even 4 hours later. Next time I have pancakes out, perhaps I'll have scrambled eggs or Eggbeaters as a side. I want to avoid dairy, but I also have to make sure I get what my body needs.
Tonight we have reservations for dinner and I already spoke to the chef about my dietary needs. He offered to make a pasta special that calls for chicken and just leave out the meat. "I'll adjust the price, too," he assured me. There was a Linguine with Marinara on the menu too.
It's a process. Definitely a process, where the byword is "Progress not Perfection". I think I am actually glad there are animal activists. I am not trying to be one, but I guess perhaps I am.
UPDATE: Awful dinner, overcooked pasta and no more in the kitchen to be had, so I had steamed veggies. Okay. I crossposted this on DKos and got lots of great comments, some challenging and some not so great, but all food for thought. Check it out! One commenter had extensive restaurant experience and said that special orders and substitutions, while waitstaff hasten to agree for their tips, put burdens on the kitchen and they often don't share in the tips.