With Thanksgiving fresh in our memories and the Christmas season upon us, I'd like to say thank you to the farmer.
I would like to say thank you for my free time and the ability to explore a career in journalism. Too often folks get hung up on the hum ho "thank you for my food" message without realizing what that means.
In Noel Kingsbury's new book Hybrid: The History of Science and Plant Breeding, the farmer's contribution is spelled out in a concise manner. According to the book, it takes 20 square kilometers (4,942 acres) to support one hunter/gatherer. If the same land area were farmed, it would support 6,000 people.
This means the farmer's contribution to society has allowed us the time to pursue other career options. Yes, even you, Wayne Pacelle. As the CEO of the Humane Society of the United States, Pacelle spends his days trying to abolish animal agriculture. Even as he spends his time in this manner, he should be thanking farmers that he's able to do so. If he had to find his own berries and leaves, not much time would be left for working against the so-called "factory farms."
Let's take this a step further. While Pacelle and other animal rights activists do not agree with meat consumption, they should at least realize the contribution to society. How many engineers, scientists, teachers, doctors, etc. were able to purchase a turkey at the grocery store for the holidays? Without animal ag, these folks would have had to raise their own turkey. To me it's a no brainer. Society is better off with these folks working in their chosen field, not raising backyard turkeys.
Unless Pacelle and the other animal rights folks have completely surrounded themselves with vegetarians, they should be thanking our country's meat producers. That means the postman, car dealer, waiter, mechanic, etc. Unless all these folks are vegetarians, animal ag has benefited Pacelle.
I'm reminded of one of my favorite statements, "While I don't agree with what you're saying, I support your right to say it." As a believer in free speech, this statement sums up my feelings toward animal rights activists. It seems activists should be willing to admit "While I don't agree with your food production methods, I thank you for the time to attack them."
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