The naive vegetarian

I came across a very long (and detailed) article on vegetarianism in the UK. Its called [[|the naive vegetarian]]. I think all vegetarians should atleast go through it. While I don’t quite agree with everything mentioned in the article, I think it does make a lot of interesting points.

For instance, the author advocates non-vegetarianism purely on economic and historical reasons. He uses answers to questions such as “would we survive if we all turned vegetarians” or “how many animals are killed if 1 sq km. of land is used for farming plants vs. farming animals” to motivate non-vegetarianism.

The conclusion of the article comes across as a little bit contradictary to me. First the author says,

> Meat eaters must have sympathy for and agree with the animal rights campaigner where animals, which should be grazing in fields, are confined to pens and battery houses while their natural habitat is turned into golf courses and leisure grounds for us.

And then 2 lines later, he says:

> The Western vegetarian at the moment is in a very privileged position. So long as not too many join him, he can afford to indulge his na├»ve dietary fads in a way that is denied to most of the people of this Earth. While he ponders on this fact, he might also apply himself to Kant’s Categorical Imperative which may be rewritten:

Nonetheless a very interesting read.


  1. John Barton

    I’m not a vegetarian; I eat meat whenever I feel like it. The last time I felt like it being, from memory, about 1960.
    A high infers one high in protein and fat,whereas western countries already consume far too much of these for health. I think Barry over-looked, as a naive carnivore, an excellent reason for avoiding flesh – that it is unhealthily rich in iron.Although a doctor, like many other doctors, he confuses anaemia (lack of blood)with hypoferraemia (a rare condition, lack of iron). Iron-overload diseases such as haemochromatosis,are nowadays very common, and are proven to exacerbate diabetes, myocardial infarct, Alzheimer’s, SIDS, etc.The American Dietetic Association does not support his views.
    Meat marketing boards are not worried by vegetarians, who are comparatively few, so much as the trend towards white meat – chicken and fish.Meat has important minerals such as zinc, but we are told by them that it is iron we should worry about. Quite so, avoiding it. They therefore extol RED meat.Anaemias can be iron-loading,and are no more common among vegetarians.
    Iron is especially harmful to children, and men over about 35; vitamin tablets with no iron are now available for men. Responsible doctors would never prescribe iron without first establishing a patient’s blood serum status, yet many manufacturers freely supplement foods with mineral iron – Milo, Marmite, breads and cereals etc.My family does not buy these. This supplementation results from the dishonest attempt of meat marketers to convince the public that without meat we will all be anaemic, or that iron is a ‘health food’. The body cannot excrete excess stored iron.

    John Barton

  2. Steve

    With respect, it is not contradictory.

    Whilst he expounds the point that Vegetarianism is probably a mistake, There is a common point that can be shared between meat eaters and vegetarians; that Animals ought to be well looked after and fed properly.

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