Monday, November 24, 2008

More Food for Thought

"It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on him not understanding it." -Upton Sinclair

Or, alternatively, I might say when the lifestyle he is accustomed to living depends on him not understanding it.

There are a great many changes that I've made in my life in recent years after coming to understand the way things are bought and sold and raised and made. I find that now that I know certain things, I can't go back to the way I lived before. I can't go back to blithely drinking soda when I understand where high fructose corn syrup comes from and what effects it has on the body, not to mention what effects growing and subsidizing so much corn has on our environment and our economy. I can't purchase grocery store meat anymore for many of the same reasons. But at the same time, there are things I have chosen not to investigate. I'm sure the chocolate trade has its share of dirty little secrets. I'm quite certain that many of my bargains from TJ Maxx and Target have less than noble beginnings. It is hard to give up that which we are accustomed to having, and particularly in difficult economic times it is hard to prioritize spending more on things that are better for everyone, and not just for our pocketbooks. I'd like to say that I'll make a conscious effort to do better, but I think for now all I can say is that I am beginning to be ready to do better in some areas that I was previously willing to ignore. I'm tackling one thing at a time. And honestly? Chocolate won't be first.

4 comments:

Jennifer said...

YES yes yes. I am so there. There are big changes I've made and am so strong and militant about... and others... hmm.. what was that? OH! Haha.. a blind eye? what? I didn't se anything. Child labor? Where? yaaa.... still have my hangups. it is hard, isn't it?
I do however believe the day will come when we won't have to make these choices for ourselves: things will be bad enough, what I/ we call "hard" will be a joke as we are faced with real life as the rest of the world knows it!!! get ready to redefine hard!
Loving your blog lately. Miss you!
I have a good one today. You should check it out.

Anonymous said...

I've been trying to become a vegetarian because of terrible conditions that the animals live in and in the matter that they are slaughtered. I'm having a tough time giving up meat all together though.
Where do you buy your meat from? A butcher?

marymuses said...

My dad raises grass-fed beef, so I get that from him, but chicken, buffalo, and sausage I get from the local farmer's market. I stock up during the warmer months so I have what I need for the winter when the market is not open. We got an upright freezer for a great price via Craigslist, so we store meat and various fruits and vegetables there.

We don't eat a ton of meat--I cook with it once or twice a week depending on the week, and other than that we eat pasta, beans & rice, soups, etc., that are vegetarian.

To find local food, including meat, in your area, you can visit localharvest.org.

markbe said...

You haven't investigated chocolate!?! Really, it's not so bad, not much more than the majority of cocoa is harvested by slaves... and that's probably just some bloated figure. Surely the child slave labor connected to cocoa is minimal. Sarcasm aside, Green & Black's Organic Dark Chocolate bars are safest if you're worried about social issues. Other than that you're pretty well hosed. Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings, i actually hadn't mentioned it to you because i do such a terrible job of being socially responsible myself and know you are conscious of that stuff... but then you had to go and blog about it!

btw, haven't read your blog in a while and it appears i have some serious catching up to do... may need something Christmas-y to pass the time with... something not made by slaves... Belgium is a safe bet...