The Meatless Monday campaign encourages people to skip meat one day per week for the health of the planet.
The campaign's objective according to its own web site:
Meatless Monday is a non-profit initiative of The Monday Campaigns, in association with the Johns Hopkins’ Bloomberg School of Public Health. We provide the information and recipes you need to start each week with healthy, environmentally friendly meat-free alternatives. Our goal is to help you reduce your meat consumption by 15% in order to improve your personal health and the health of the planet.Well, it seems a food company planned to start the Meatless Monday program in the House of Rep. cafeteria, only to have the meat industry bully and succeed in shooting down the effort.
I'll quote from the article:
In a letter to the House Administration Committee, the euphemistically named “Farm Animal Welfare Coalition” called Meatless Mondays “an acknowledged tool of animal rights and environmental organizations who seek to publicly denigrate U.S. livestock and poultry production.” The group asked the Committee to inform the company that "it must cease immediately" any activity promoting Meatless MondaysHow could this organization possibly be called the "Farm Animal Welfare Coalition?" Or is this a play on the "Clean Skies Bill?"
Sadly, the article indicates they succeeded as the effort to implement Meatless Mondays in the House cafeteria appears "dead on its tracks."
However, meat consumption has declined. Americans have reduced their consumption for both health and environmental reasons. The average American consumed 12.2% less meat in 2012 than in 2007.
While the livestock industry was successful in keeping Meatless Monday's out of the U.S. Capitol cafeteria, several cities encourage residents to participate including San Francisco, Los Angeles, Aspen, Santa Cruz, and Boone N.C. Both the Baltimore and San Diego school districts participate. Also, its estimated that about 18% of households participate in the Meatless Monday campaign. Al Gore has said participating in Meatless Mondays is one of the top 12 things you can do.
There have been many diaries over the years talking about the environmental impact of livestock production. I couldn't top the outstanding diaries already written on Daily Kos. For example, "MIT Climate: Fast Solution To Climate Change Is On Your Plate", and "The Oil We Eat."
I'm still a little new to the environmental cause. I've said before, when I came to Daily Kos I was passionate about economic bread and butter issues, but I didn't think a lot about other issues. I learned from Daily Kos. Several months ago I read a comment by A Siegel. He or she stated our ability to solve economic problems such as health care, unemployment, and poverty all depended on a stable climate.
With issues like health care, unemployment, social security, etc. the top few were insulated from the consequences of their actions. Also, I know for a fact many people don't support something until it personally impacts them. One of the reasons we don't have national health care in this country is because the system still works for about half the population. Yes, it works for those on Medicare and those who have good employer provided coverage. Those people often don't want to pay taxes to fund care for the rest of the population, some of whom lose everything they have due to an illness or have their lives significantly shortened. I often wondered how many uninsured/underinsured would it take before we could pass true, universal health care? How many unemployed do we need before we can pass a big jobs bill? How many food insecure Americans do we need before we can increase funding for the SNAP program?
Will it work the same way with climate change? Yes, at first the world's poorest and most geographically susceptible people will be seriously hurt. Scientists say climate change has already contributed to famines. I've read millions of people could become destitute in Africa and Asia as the climate crisis intensifies. We already have 50 million food insecure Americans - how many more will we have as food prices rise?
But, if we don't act soon, eventually the impact will trickle all the way up. I sometimes wonder if humanity isn't facing an issue that will force us all to realize that, yes, we are our brother's keeper?
Note: beach babe in fl publishes a weekly Meatless Monday diary here on Daily Kos Mondays at 5 PM Central time!
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