The radical left sees culinary malfeasance in a lot of our traditional habits. Vegetarians and vegans have long sought to end the eating of any sort of meet. They claim that it’s bad for human health, bad for our environment and – with the support of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) – bad for the animals.
I suppose you can make a case on the latter point, but humans have been omnivores for millions of years. Our bodies have evolved to rely on vegetables AND meat – including sea creatures. That is why we are equipped with canine teeth – those particularly pointed ones that are in our upper jaws and are just short of Dracula or Fido fangs.
The crazy environmentalists – you know, those who say that human life on earth will end in 12 years – go beyond human health considerations or protection of animals. They say that flatulence on the farm is contributing to global warming. At one point, they proposed that Greeks give up their love of lamb because – according to them – sheep are prodigious producers of flatulence. That is a little like asking Italians to stop drinking Chianti.
They are also on the attack against the most iconic American foods – steaks, hamburgers and milk. It is those damn polluting steers and cows. (Just for the record, we get beef from steers and milk from cows.)
This creates a dilemma of sorts. If we do not eat the beef and cannot cull the herds of steers, won’t they just propagate and produce even more biological gas factories? And won’t the enlarging herds eat more of that water sucking vegetation that we will need to replace the absent meat and milk?
And all this while our friends on the fringe are reducing our yields per acre by opposition to ALL pesticides and genetically modified vegetables. If they get their way, an ear of corn will fit into your ear.
In case you think that the left sees this as a broad-based human problem, think again. According to the latest dubious study, the alleged attack on the environment due to eating is primarily the fault of … white people.
Now this was not an April Fool Joke or an article in the satirical publication, The Onion. According to a recent article in Science Daily:
“White individuals disproportionately affect the environment through their eating habits by eating more foods that require more water and release more greenhouse gases through their production compared to foods black and Latinx individuals eat, according to a new report published in the Journal of Industrial Ecology.”
If you doubt this does not come out of left-wing academia, note the use of the new ethnic term “Latinx” as opposed to the traditional collective of “Hispanic.”
The study was produced at the University of Illinois at Chicago. The primary author is Joe Bozeman, a student in the Institute for Environmental Science and Policy, That’s right. Not a scientist, but a kid who is still learning. It may make for an interesting term paper, but a document taken seriously by scientific publications and worthy of national reporting? Nay.
According to the Report, a white person is responsible for 680 kilograms of carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere each year based on what they eat. An Hispanic person causes 640 kilograms to be released. And a black person 600 kilograms. This is not a big difference per person, but according to Bozeman, when you count everyone on earth, ”… it’s very clear that whites are responsible for most greenhouse gases emitted as a result of their food choices.”
What foods – you may ask – has propelled white folks’ eating habits into the lead of environmental damage. Potatoes, oranges, chicken, milk, beef, to name a few of the main culprits. I did not see any mention of beans – a food known to produce a lot of gas. Who can forget that little rhyme? “Beans, beans, the musical fruit. The more eat, the more you toot.”
I am no scientist and have not done a lot of research on the subject – and do not intend to – but my years of experience in the inner cities makes me dubious of the accuracy of the Report. I refuse to believe that whites eat more chicken than blacks. Go into a KFC in a black community and you will always see a crowd. It must be the oranges.
And why did the study exclude Asians? Chicken is at the top of their food preferences. I can say that having been to Asia many times. And rice is a high-water usage commodity. It is virtually a hydroponic food. Considering how many Asians there are in the world, not including them in the Report makes a deep and dark shadow of doubt on the Report.
Oh … and speaking of Asian food. Did you know that it is racist for people to prepare – cook – traditional foods of another culture? The nut cases on the left even have a name for it – “cultural appropriation.”
There was an article in Everyday Feminism (figures) entitled “The Feminist guide to being a foodie without being culturally appropriative.“ Writer Rachel Kuo accuses Americans of “appropriating” foreign cuisine in general—in particular, the cuisine of minorities who aren’t white. In other words, we white folk are food racists.
Kuo rants against “fusion foods” that are inspired but may not be completely true to the original recipe – as if a country or culture has only one way to prepare their food. My mother made great chop suey, but not like the Chinese restaurants and not like China. In fact, after traveling to China, I told friends that I always loved Chinese food until I went to China and discovered I never had any. Even the Chinese restaurants in America adjusted their recipes to accommodate American tastes.
Kuo’s categories of appropriation include:
- Seeking exotic foods made by “brownies” – her word, not mine. That seems to mean everyone on earth who is darker than the perma-tanned actor George Hamilton.
- Asking a person of color (one of the brownies, I assume) to recommend a place to get their particular ethnic food. But why would I ask a German to recommend a good Indian restaurant?
- Wanting “adventure points” for eating the ethnic food of people of color. Was it inappropriate for my Chinese visitor to think it was an adventure to eat a Chicago hot dog and a tamale for the first time? In fact, he decided to introduce the tamale in his restaurant in Harbin. Was I aiding and abetting cultural appropriation in reverse?
- Loving the food but not the people. According to Kuo, you may not enjoy Mexican food unless you are willing to fight against low wages in Guadalajara or insist on securing the southern border. Everything is political with those radicals on the left.
- Here we have the granddaddy of them all. Profiting from food oppression. As best I can understand Kuo’s thinking – or lack thereof – she believes that appropriation involves upscale restaurants putting peasant fare on the menu at aristocrat prices – more than the poor folks can afford. Kuo writes that “This is ‘food gentrification.’ Ethnic communities can no longer afford their own cuisines and sustain their traditions.” Hmmmm. I have eaten at P.F. Chang’s – an upscale Chinese fusion restaurant – but there are still scores of small inexpensive Chinese restaurants where I and even poor Chinese can enjoy the cuisine of the Middle Kingdom.
Kuo admits to a grievous irrationality. Cultural appropriation can only happen when white folks eat or cook the food of those “brownies.” As a man of Polish and Austrian descent, Kuo will allow me to freely cook and eat spaghetti and meatballs, a gyros platter, Wiener schnitzel and Yorkshire pudding. But not pad thai, babaganush, tacos or tandoori chicken. Recently, two women were accused of cultural appropriation for making and serving burritos. In Boca Raton, we have a pretty good Chinese restaurant that is owned and operated (including chefs) by Hispanics. Maybe that cultural appropriation does not count since they are also people of color according to the new progressive definitions.
I love to cook, and I must confess that I am a serial cultural appropriator – especially of Asia food. My stir fries are a favorite with the family. My son loves my three-mushroom Chinese soup. Curry beef is also an occasional item on the Horist menu. To Ms. Kuo, I say that I am not appropriating your food – or anyone else’s. I am appreciating it.
The only thing I say about savoring a seared steak, those greenhouse gases produced by my allegedly white diet and appropriating the food of other cultures – count me in. None of that is not going to change my omnivorous multinational cooking and eating habits. And why should since the folks on the crazy left have told me that our inhabitable world is coming to an end in 12 years? Bon Appetit!
So, there ‘tis.
Post Script: Cultural appropriation also involves fashions, but we will have to let that go for another time.