I don't celebrate Thanksgiving. Instead, I celebrate eating with others for whose company I enjoy. This year a dear friend whom I haven't seen in years is here to celebrate the eating fest with us.
And yet I ponder, do we eat the proverbial turkey or not?
I'm a meat eater. I've tried tofu as a meat substitute and it just isn't the same thing. I've tried going vegetarian. I've tried even just cutting out red meat. I began to feel weak and under-nourished. No amount of legumes, nuts, beans, etc. was giving me the protein my body kept telling me it needed. My body simply craves the protein meat offers. The last time I tried eating a tofu hot dog, my colon reacted rather violently, first by asking HEY WHAT IN THE HELL IS THAT then by answering itself by saying I AM REMOVING THIS STUFF IMMEDIATELY! DO NOT PUT THAT CRAP THROUGH ME EVER AGAIN YOU HEAR? It was painful, both for my colon and for yours truly.
However, I've gotta admit, ever since I accidentally saw a brief portion of that Sarah Palin clip (will she NEVER go away???) speaking to the news cameras while some farm hand behind her stuffed turkeys head first into this "off with the head" vat, the idea of eating one kinda lost its appeal.
After I regained my composure and stopped crying, I asked Mr. Nina, "Isn't there a more humane way of preparing a turkey to eat?"
And yet, in truth, can we ever really attach the word "humane" to "intentional death"?
Our government loves to use the phrase "collateral damage" to describe the intentional death of civilians when such deaths result from their defined version of justified military intervention. So maybe we could say turkey's are collateral damage resulting from the human need to eat meat.
While that could be defined as an attempt at sick and twisted humor, it isn't too far from the truth. Some of us don't eat meat. Some of us do. As a result, animals must die. And until I can find some protein that satisfies my body in the way meat does, I will remain a meat eater. I will struggle with some guilt now and then as well as wish for different bodily needs. And this year, hopefully find a way to remove those graphic images I saw from my conscience.