The Face on Your Plate

A new book by Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson "The Face On Your Plate" is about the basic fact that every piece of meat comes from a thinking, feeling, complex creature. One that has feelings and deep social relationships. A review of the book in the Oregonian by Jeff Baker condenses the short list of reasons to go veggie to these:

"1. You'll feel a whole lot better

2. Chickens have feelings, too.

3. The earth can't sustain all this grain-eating, water-polluting, waste-producing, landscape-denuding, economy-busting livestock."

Undeniable truths, all. It's really pure selfishness to go on eating meat, when there are other options. Chickens DO have feelings and intelligence, we just decide they don't.

Says Dr. Chris Evans, Professor of Psychology at Macquarie University in Australia,

Chickens exist in stable social groups. They can recognize each other by their facial features. They have 24 distinct cries that communicate a wealth of information to one other, including separate alarm calls depending on whether a predator is traveling by land or sea. They are good at solving problems. ‘As a trick at conferences I sometimes list these attributes, without mentioning chickens, and people think I’m talking about monkeys,’ Mr. Evans said.

Perhaps most persuasive is the chicken’s intriguing ability to understand that an object, when taken away and hidden, nevertheless continues to exist. This is beyond the capacity of small children.

Think how it is for a cow, or a super-smart, sensitive pig to get thrown on a truck, crammed in with other terrified individuals and make their way to a slaughterhouse, where it really is armeggedon on earth.

Guess what? Veggies are delicious! They can be prepared in the tastiest, most satisfying ways and there is no torture involved! And fake meat, don't even get me started! It's positively delectible!

This is a cause I truly believe in. When I think of the innocent and curious, loving creatures that are falling before our insatiable lust for meat and animal products, I am sick. It is a holocaust.

Hopefully, it seems that humans are slowly waking up to the fact that they are not kings of the earth. Just because we CAN pollute the earth in our quest for convenience, doesn't mean we SHOULD. And, just because we CAN imprison these defenseless creatures and harvest them cruelly, without a thought in the world to their own needs and desires, doesn't make us SMART.

It's not even healthy! How stupid are we, anyway?

Try this recipe and tell me what you think:

One package Morningstar "Beef" Strips

One package corn tortillas

one ripe avocado

one tomato

heat olive oil in skillet and add beef strips. Cook until thawed and slightly seared, set aside

in a small bowl, mix avocado and tomatos with a sprinkle of lime juice, salt and one T sugar.

Lightly cook tortillas in skillet and fill with beef strips, then avocado mixture.

Garnish with cilantro if desired, and enjoy immediately with a handful or tortilla chips.


Come hear Jeffrey Mousssaief Masson read from his book and have him sign a copy at Powell's City of Books 1005 SW Burnside Friday, April 3rd at 7:30 pm, third floor.