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"I Love You, but You Love Meat" - NYT

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ShikaSfrn Feb 13, 2008 05:40 AM

Hey all,

I came across this article in the New York Times this morning and thought it was a really interesting topic. Here's the link:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/13/din...

What do you guys think? Have you ever have to deal with this issue on a personal level?

  1. m
    Miami Foodie Girl Feb 16, 2008 03:23 PM

    Everyone is replying to this article about thier experieneces with Vegetarians. However, I freaked out when I went on my first date (with the man who is now my husband). He has Celiac (no gluten, barley, wheat, rye and oats) he is also allergic to Dairy and Soy. It was not until I met him that i even considered how many things are made with SOY, or soybean oil. I remember we had been dating for about 6 months and I realized that I might never eat in a chinese restaurant with my husband again. However, I no longer take 3 hours to do the food shopping because I have to read the labels on everything. We eat at great restaurants all the time. I find cooking a good challenge, and we eat a lot less prepared foods then I ever did when I was single. I get my chinese fix buy doing take out (the same is true for Pizza). I am glad I took the chance, but the feeling of wanting to run....was certainly there. Luckily his charm, warmth and personality won.

    1. romansperson Feb 14, 2008 10:02 AM

      "vegangelical"

      Great term! I don't have a problem at all with what other people choose for themselves diet-wise - but I expect the same respect in return.

      1. a
        Avalondaughter Feb 14, 2008 08:37 AM

        I don't eat seafood and my husband doesn't eat red meats. I get around this by making a lot of chicken dishes. I also make a special meal every couple of weeks where I'll make meat for myself and fish for him (my V-day meal will be a steak for me and shrimp scampi for him).

        What's tougher is that he is lactose intolerant. He is sometimes willing to take a Lactaid and suck it up, but I'm never sure what cheesy things he thinks are worth it and which ones won't be. Very often I'll sneak some parmiggiano or mascarpone into his foods like polenta or risotto and he never knows it's there.

        If he were a vegan, I'd have a problem. I find so many vegan foods to just be gross. I hate the heavy starchy loaves and burgers and casseroles I often see in vegan cookbooks and I'm not a fan of tofu. I don't think I could marry a vegan. I might see some leeway on a lacto-ovo vegetarian though.

        Here is a relationship conumdrum though. In college I dated a really neurotic guy who refused to ever eat out. He had a bad experience as a child and said that any time he ever tried to eat out after that, he always got sick. He wouldn't eat in the school cafeteria (commuted from home, so it wasn't a necessity to eat dorm food) or campus snack bar. He wouldn't partake of pizza delivery. All of his meals had to come from his own kitchen (although he's eat packages chips and cookies as long as he purchased them). In college it never mattered to me that we never ate out, but as an adult, that would definitely be a relationship killer I cook most of my meals at home, but I do like to eat out on special occasions.

        5 Replies
        1. re: Avalondaughter
          Davwud Feb 14, 2008 09:26 AM

          Your last instance is an interesting one. To me it seems like your college guy didn't have a physical problem it was more mental. Perhaps he's gotten over it with counseling or something.
          The bottom line is, there are a great many things that can kill a relationship and ones inability to deal with another idiosyncrasy(s) is certainly a big one. The bottom line is, if things don't make you feel comfortable and they don't seem to be getting any better than you're better off going your own way. It doesn't make you a bad person. Just makes you human. Different stokes for different folks is what they say.

          DT

          1. re: Davwud
            a
            Avalondaughter Feb 14, 2008 09:36 AM

            Mental indeed, but it sprang from a physical problem. He got sick once at a restaurant and then felt sick every other time he ate out, and feared getting sick again.

            He never felt a need to get counseling for it back then. He just never ate out. I'm sure he thought he would find a woman willing to never eat out. I haven't spoken to him in years, so I'll never know.

            1. re: Avalondaughter
              Davwud Feb 14, 2008 10:02 AM

              I got sick on raisins as a kid. As an adult I retch every time I have them. I'm sure it's mental but I have it in the back of my head that I have some sort of issue with raisins and it's just my body fighting back at something it knows it has a problem with. I don't like much in the way of dried fruit. Ultimately that's one thing. It's not a phobia that cuts a wide path. I have a friend who got sick from Taco Bell when we were teenagers. He has never gone back. He still eats out though. Even eats Mexican to the best of my knowledge.

              DT

              1. re: Davwud
                j
                jes Feb 14, 2008 11:17 AM

                I had surgery at a childrens hospital when I was 6. They used a banana scented anastisia, still to thins day, I cannot make myself eat them. I have however had plaintains had South/Central American restaurants; they dotn have the same smell.

          2. re: Avalondaughter
            DanaB Feb 14, 2008 11:57 AM

            I had a friend who was afraid to eat food if she didn't trust the person serving her. She was always paranoid when we went out that "somebody" was going to slip something into her drink at the bar. I always knew the status of our friendship by how she reacted to food I'd prepared -- if she'd deign to eat, we were all good.

            Her problem was clearly mental -- later she was diagnosed with both OCD and manic/depressive disorder.

          3. j
            jlafler Feb 13, 2008 06:43 PM

            This article strikes me as a classic "bogus trend story." Long on anecdotal evidence and assertions such as "many vegetarians say they cannot date anyone who eats meat" (Many? how many? more than a decade ago? more than a century ago?). It seems to include just as many examples of couples who coexist despite different eating habits as of people who can't tolerate being involved with someoen whose eating style is different.

            7 Replies
            1. re: jlafler
              Davwud Feb 14, 2008 05:00 AM

              I doubt I would be able to live with a vegan. It's just too restrictive but I have at times cooked veggie meals for Mrs. Sippi and just added some meat I cooked on the side if that's what I wanted to do. To not be able to use eggs, cheese, milk, etc. would be just too much.
              And be it a vegan, veg, non smoker, whatever, I couldn't live with a preachy one.

              DT

              1. re: jlafler
                m
                MakingSense Feb 14, 2008 09:47 AM

                You're probably right about Bogus Trend.
                A pretty good poll by Roper Interactive for the Vegetarian Resource Group in 2006 set the number of vegetarians in the US at about 3%. Yep, that's it 3%.
                About 6.7% never eat meat. 2.3% never eat meat, fish or fowl. Vegan could be about 1.4%.
                http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2006issu...
                I guess this takes into account the people who are "vegetarians" but make exceptions when they want to have bacon or decide to stray. It's trendy now for a lot of people to eat the way their friends eat when they go to college or out to restaurants but they don't adhere to strict vegetarian lifestyles. Or they'll eat veg for a few months or years and then resume omnivore ways.
                But that's it. 3%. And that's from a Vegetarian group, which believes the number is relatively steady. So maybe the media is overstating the trend...

                1. re: MakingSense
                  DanaB Feb 14, 2008 11:53 AM

                  I guess most of that 3% lives in Los Angeles, because I know a heck of a lot of vegetarians.

                  Those are interesting statistics -- I wonder if, historically, the numbers are increasing.

                  Like I said, I have lots of vegetarian friends, and one who periodically attempts veganism. However, none of them are preachy, and their existence in my life has simply made it more interesting. It's a welcome challenge to my cooking repertoire, as well.

                  1. re: DanaB
                    m
                    MakingSense Feb 14, 2008 02:31 PM

                    Nope, the Vegetarian Resource Group said the percentage was relatively steady. There are also some vegetarians who have resumed eating meat now that "organic" free-range, humanely-raised meat is available. Lots of people don't stick with it. Revolving door.

                    1. re: MakingSense
                      Davwud Feb 14, 2008 04:55 PM

                      My belief is that those who don't stick with it are also the preachy types. They're the ones who are doing it because they think it makes them better than others. Either that or because it's trendy/peer pressure.
                      Either way, I'm sure they ultimately see the error of their ways...;-)

                      DT

                      1. re: Davwud
                        m
                        MakingSense Feb 14, 2008 05:43 PM

                        Last year we had a neighborhood potluck at my house - just the entrées. Everyone was soooo concerned that there be enough vegetarian dishes - for others, mind you, not for them, because they ate meat, but "so many people are vegetarians these days..."
                        Well, I checked my list the day before the party and figured I better add a few meat dishes ASAP. Good thing because they were totally cleaned out while all the vegetarian things went begging. All ages, total political spectrum, originally from all sections of the US and several foreign countries.

                        We had ONE person out of 75 who was really, truly a vegetarian.

                        1. re: Davwud
                          j
                          jlafler Feb 14, 2008 07:24 PM

                          As a counter-example, the obnoxious ex I mentioned above has been a vegetarian for at least 15 years. I think he may be a vegan now, but we're not in close touch. I can think of a couple of other people who have been strict vegetarians for long periods of time, and strident about it. I was a strict vegetarian for a couple of years and a mostly-vegetarian, occasional fish-eater for about 16 years, but I always tried not to be preachy about it.

                2. Suzy Q Feb 13, 2008 02:04 PM

                  I'm not a vegetarian and neither is my husband, so while this isn't a personal issue for me, I look at it like any other lifestyle attribute. Could I marry/live with a smoker? Well, I guess so, but it wouldn't be my first choice. There are some things people do/don't do that can make sharing a life together difficult. Not insurmountable in most cases, but certainly challenging.

                  That being said, I have friends who don't eat meat, and it's never been a problem. If they come to my house for dinner, I'm respectful of them and provide enough veggie options that no one goes away hungry. They, in turn, are respectful of me, and don't lecture me if I slice into a juicy steak or eat some chicken. In those circumstances, it's about being respectful of others, or, as my mama always put it, knowing when to keep your trap shut.

                  I can be friends with people who are vegetarians, smokers, whatever - but I can't be friends with judgmental people under any circumstances.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Suzy Q
                    linguafood Feb 13, 2008 04:05 PM

                    Well said, Suzy Q.

                  2. im_nomad Feb 13, 2008 11:10 AM

                    without getting into a discussion about my own eating habits, i am primarily a vegetarian, and a very adverturous eater compared to many people I know. I do not eat meat. Most of my s/o's have been meat eaters, and we got along in this regard. I have even cooked meat for one of them, as well as for friends one thanksgiving because i was the cook and it was what they really wanted (needless to say they would have been equally as understanding if i'd not offered to cook a meat based meal). I just didn't eat it. I guess i am beyond the vegangelical (lol) as described in the article. I agree that extremely picky eaters are unsexy in some regard, although i suppose if i met a guy I really had the hots for, it might not matter. I'm not talking about those who have allergies or various health related or religious concerns in the area. I'm talking the "ewwww what's THAT" type.

                    I like people though who are intrigued with things, and willing to try at least, all life has to offer. I've had friends who were partnered with very picky eaters, and this would annoy me to no end. To each their own though i suppose.

                    I once met a girl however who was very much the vegangelical. Was at a conference with a group of us, and launched into a commentary on my choice of breakfast because i ate eggs. I did not request this education and eventually advised her she was ruining my breakfast and one of the few animal products that i will actually still eat.

                    The same woman also told several of us in conversation that she does not "allow" her boyfriend to eat meat ...i thought this was not only ridiculous, but highly disrespectful of his individuality and needs. I should think i'd never date anyone who told me I wasn't "allowed" to do something, what am I,...four?. It sounded controlling to me. I imagined him to be a closet meat-eater. But then, according to the article...perhaps she could smell it off him, lol.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: im_nomad
                      Davwud Feb 13, 2008 11:33 AM

                      I can't imagine how she has a boyfriend. If she really did.

                      I also don't care how much you had the hots for someone,it would eventually become a problem.

                      DT

                      1. re: Davwud
                        im_nomad Feb 13, 2008 12:03 PM

                        yeah, someone knew him, lol, so he existed. Personally i can not imagine how anyone would tolerate that, but some people will put up with anything if it means they don't have to be alone. Perhaps he likes being ordered around, who knows.

                        As for the second point, i guess i am saying "never say never"......i never really dated such an individual as the picky eater i described. I wouldn't want someone to write me off on a first date after all, if they found out i didn't eat meat, even though as a rule i don't bring something like that up lest they think i'm about to order a bowl of grass and cry when they cut into their steak, lol.

                        i have to say however, that if was ever at a group (or worse family) gathering where any s/o of mine went into a whiny "eww whats THAT" rant as i've witnessed in others...i'd be seriously contemplating that relationship. Making someone feel bad about what they've graciously cooked for you, is so not nice.

                        1. re: im_nomad
                          m
                          mmalmad Feb 13, 2008 12:56 PM

                          My girlfriend is a vegatarian, and in general likes simpler food than I do. I still cook and eat meat at home (though lamb and lobster bother her so I don't cook it at home) and it sometimes affects our choices in restaurants, it has never been a problem.

                    2. Davwud Feb 13, 2008 09:05 AM

                      Okay, there seems to be a couple of different things going on here and maybe more than that.
                      First of all, let's get one thing straight. There is no "Moral" reason to not eat meat. We are omnivores. That's how our bodies are designed. There is no reason for us to not eat meat anymore than there is for any other (wild) animal.

                      Secondly, there is the difference between not being adventurous/picky and being open minded.

                      Now, as for the second one, I'm not sure I could date someone like this. I love food. Lots of different kinds of food and am pretty open to whatever. If I like it, I'd usually try to prepare it at home. Cooking for an SO would create a problem. I have a friend who's younger sister I adore. Many years ago I asked her out but was turned down. Now years later I'm glad she did because we're still friend and her steadfast pickiness would've been a problem and maybe we wouldn't be friends.

                      As for the first, if you don't like meat (Which a very dear friend of mind doesn't) that's easily worked around. Same deal if it's for medical/religious reasons. If you're one of "Those" types, I'm afraid all we'd do is argue.

                      I know some of you will take offence to my very first comment but you can't deny it. Open your mouth and look inside.

                      DT

                      8 Replies
                      1. re: Davwud
                        LAcupcake Feb 13, 2008 09:44 AM

                        I'm a very happy carnivore and while I agree that speaking in a natural and evolutionary sense, one could argue that there is no "moral" justification for avoiding meat, there are many people that avoid eating it due to "moral" issues having to do with the farming and slaughtering process. Though eating meat is a natural part of human nature I don't think it's fair to equivocate our ancestors hunting and killing wild animals to the modern day process of farming and slaughtering livestock. That being said, I'm serving beef tenderloin for my V-Day dinner tomorrow night and I plan on enjoying every bite :)

                        1. re: LAcupcake
                          Davwud Feb 13, 2008 10:12 AM

                          If you have a moral issue with how things are farmed and eventually slaughtered there are alternatives than simply going for the feed trough/conveyor belt method. Seek out more natural sources and more animal friendly butchers.
                          My wife almost cries when we pass a farm and see those little doghouses littering the pasture. So she doesn't eat veal. I, on the other hand, choose to ignore it. All that said, I doubt I couldn't kill a cow or a pig to eat. I know it happens but I just like to believe it grows on trees.

                          DT

                        2. re: Davwud
                          f
                          FrankJBN Feb 13, 2008 11:58 AM

                          "There is no "Moral" reason to not eat meat. We are omnivores"

                          "I know some of you will take offence to my very first comment but you can't deny it"

                          I don't take offense, but I certainly deny it. Just because humans have the capability to be omnivores, doesn't mean that we must be. Vegans aren't omnivores, nor are vegetarians.

                          And it is vegans and vegetarians who may cite morailty as the reason for their choice.

                          Just because it is not your morality (nor mine) doesn't make a bald assertion that it doesn't exist accurate. Keep in mind, I think it is an invalid claim that it is immoral to slaughter for food, but I cannot deny that others find it immoral.

                          We are sexually mature in our early teens. Does that mean there is no moral reason to discourage wanton sexual activity among teens?

                          On average, men are stronger than women. Does that invalidate the existence of a morality which denies men full use of this advantage?

                          1. re: FrankJBN
                            Davwud Feb 14, 2008 04:58 AM

                            "Just because humans have the capability to be omnivores, doesn't mean that we must be."
                            I never said that you had to be an omnivore. I just said that the moral issue doesn't apply. Humans are constructed as meat eaters thus it's just nature.

                            "Vegans aren't omnivores, nor are vegetarians."
                            Yes they are. They just choose not to eat meat. They aren't constructed any differently that anyone else.

                            "We are sexually mature in our early teens. Does that mean there is no moral reason to discourage wanton sexual activity among teens?"
                            Well if there isn't then does that mean that there is no moral reason to cheat on your spouse??

                            "On average, men are stronger than women. Does that invalidate the existence of a morality which denies men full use of this advantage?"
                            I'm not even sure what this is supposed to mean. If you're asking if it's okay to beat a woman because you're bigger and stronger then no it isn't. It's certainly against the law though.

                            DT

                            1. re: Davwud
                              j
                              jlafler Feb 14, 2008 07:48 AM

                              I think what FrankJBN meant by those rhetorical questions was that just because humans are physically capable of something doesn't make that something morally acceptable behavior.

                              Please correct me if I'm wrong.

                              My opinion is that humans invented morality; it doesn't map perfectly onto our physical needs, desires, or capacities.

                            2. re: FrankJBN
                              b
                              bruklinboy Feb 14, 2008 06:31 AM

                              "There is no "Moral" reason to not eat meat. We are omnivores"

                              I totally agree
                              While not a strict vegetarian(I do eat seafood and dairy)for me it was not a moral decision(going on 18yrs). Simply, it was good for me.
                              If it comes down to me or the cow, I can assure you the cow wont be eating me.
                              It seems to be more an issue for my wife, in the sense she likes to cook and is a meat eater, but never knows what to make me.
                              So far my part, I try to help, as their is wealth of info on this thing called the internet.
                              I find things I'd like to try based on my dietary choices, and either she or I will make them.
                              She evens ends up liking them sometimes. Although never when I do the cooking!

                              1. re: bruklinboy
                                DanaB Feb 14, 2008 11:46 AM

                                >>If it comes down to me or the cow, I can assure you the cow wont be eating me.<<

                                That's because the cow is an herbivore. And regardless, omnivores typically don't eat carnivores, which I find interesting.

                                1. re: DanaB
                                  j
                                  jlafler Feb 14, 2008 01:03 PM

                                  I think the reason omnivores don't generally eat carnivores is that carnivores tend to be far less numerous than herbivores or omnivores in most ecosystems. That's especially true of predators (as opposed to scavengers). Predators also tend to be smart and/or fast and/or large. Of course, everyone gets eaten eventually, if not by a predator, then by scavengers or microorganisms.

                          2. s
                            swissgirl Feb 13, 2008 08:18 AM

                            My husband is the meat eater, I eat mostly vegetarian (flexitarian). We tease each other about our differences. The main point of contention has been I would like my husband to eat healthier in general (less red meat, fewer fast food burgers and fried chicken). He has switched to cooking with ground turkey and actually likes turkey bacon. I eat chicken and turkey maybe once a month, the rest of the time, it's vegetarian, including vegetarian meat substitutes. Our work schedules differ, so we don't have the chance to eat together too often.

                            Once thing we've compromised on - our 4 yr old daughter eats meat but no pork or shellfish(comes from my religious upbringing). I can see how having kids would pose a dilemma for some of the couples in the article.

                            My dad remarried a strict vegetarian and she is so disapproving of meat at family dinners, giving license to one of the more in-your-face family members to flaunt his BBQ ribs and chicken when she's around. It sounds amusing on the surface, but it does come down to respect and acceptance among adults about how one chooses to eat. I do know my dad sneaks steaks, burgers, etc. when he is away from his wife; I don't know if she suspects that he does that.

                            1. jboeke Feb 13, 2008 08:00 AM

                              I don't think it's food likes/dislikes as much as personal lifestyle. I married a man who was as interested in trying new foods as I was. Cooking and eating new foods is my hobby and passion, so I needed someone who I could share that with. That's the important thing for living with me. I don't think I would be happy trying to feed someone for the rest of my life who only ate 10 foods, because it would restrict me from doing what I love or force him to do what he hates. I don't see this any differently than someone who is an exercise fanatic - they wouldn't marry a couch potato because they live differently. If something is essential to how you live, then you should be able to share it with your spouse.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: jboeke
                                w
                                wawajb Feb 15, 2008 12:41 PM

                                I fully agree with jboeke, for me it's more a lifestyle choice than a food choice. My fiance and I both love to cook and love to eat. It is the one hobby we share and I don't know that I could live with somebody who wouldn't eat my cooking. I can and do make vegetarian meals for health and budget reasons, but I certainly wouldn't want to give up on braised short ribs, roasted chicken, smoked spare ribs and homemade sausages (just to name a few things). And I can't even contemplate living with a vegan...cheese is a major food group in my world and ends up in nearly everything I cook. It mostly boils down to the fact that I love to cook eating together is a big part of every adult relationship I've had.

                                But that aside, I have very little patience with the moral argument. If you have a problem with the treatment of animals raised for food, then you shouldn't have a problem with eating venison shot cleanly by a skilled hunter. If your belief is that you shouldn't kill anything to eat, then what makes it ok to murder those soybean plants that were happily growing before somebody came along and heartlessly ripped them out of the ground. If there's no "Ok to eat these things" line somewhere between humans and pigs, then why does it suddenly existing between chickens (who are dumb as dirt) and potatoes.

                                On the other hand...the environmental argument (less energy intensive to eat lower on the food chain) does make sense to me. Not enough for me to give up meat all together...but a bit.

                              2. b
                                BostonCookieMonster Feb 13, 2008 07:47 AM

                                Huh. I dated a string of vegetarians before settling down with my Partner in Crime ... they seem to be attracted to me, for some reason. It was fine, but I would not want to date a vegetarian who maintained that meat eaters "smell bad." I gotta say I also would really not want to be with a vegan (unless I abandoned the idea of ever cooking for us), someone who kept kosher (I have Issues, okay?), or someone who, like my friend's husband, only eats processed foods and looks askance at mashed potatoes that don't come out of a box.

                                But I hope I wouldn't dump someone for having the misfortune to be allergic to wheat.

                                1. v
                                  Vshu Feb 13, 2008 07:21 AM

                                  I have relatives and friends who are vegan or at some sort of level, vegetarian for their own reasons (ethical, environmental, etc) and on the whole, it does not bother me since they do not impose their eating habits on me. I am more bothered by picky, close-minded eaters -- and people who like their steaks burnt to a crisp to "get rid of the germs."

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: Vshu
                                    Miss Needle Feb 13, 2008 09:45 AM

                                    Yeah, I have issues with people who tell me what I can and cannot eat. I've got no problem with people giving me their viewpoints, and I will certainly hear them out. But I will ultimately make the decision for myself on what to eat.

                                  2. s
                                    swsidejim Feb 13, 2008 06:32 AM

                                    When I was dating I never considered dating a vegetarian too different of a lifestyle. So I would have never married a vegetarian.

                                    With the above said, I think I only know one vegetarian, one of my neighbors who seems nice, and does not frown about others eating meat at one of my bbq's during the summer. I make sure to always have plenty of non-meat items for her, all part of being a good host.

                                    9 Replies
                                    1. re: swsidejim
                                      f
                                      FrankJBN Feb 13, 2008 06:54 AM

                                      "I'm actually a bit surprised by the people who won't date somebody because of different dietary preferences"

                                      In your family's case, it was a choice made for health reasons. That is a lot easier to accomodate than when the choice is made for "moral" reasons and there are plenty who are vegetarian or vegan because of such feelings.

                                      IMO, it would be impossible to maintain a relationship with someone who believed you 'murdered' your dinner (or who felt that the source of chicken Kiev was an equivalent sentient being to a human).

                                      Heck, I had a relationship break up with a meat eater over veal.

                                      1. re: FrankJBN
                                        Miss Needle Feb 13, 2008 07:04 AM

                                        While you may have a problem with this morality issue, there certainly are a lot of people who don't.

                                        I used to date this guy for seven years and he refused to eat mammal meats for moral reasons. I didn't get on his case defending mammals, and he didn't get on mine for eating beef. My sister-in-law is an omnivore and her husband is a vegetarian for ethical reasons. They've been happy together for over 10 years. For moral reasons, I'd rather eat lower on the food chain as much as possible. However, my husband doesn't really care and will eat a good deal of veal, foie gras, pigs (which are highly intelligent animals), etc. That's his business, and I can't see myself forcing my views on this grown man.

                                        Everybody has their own comfort zone. Some people are more rigid than others about these things. It is certainly your perogative to break up with a meat eater over veal. I just don't feel the same way.

                                        1. re: Miss Needle
                                          f
                                          FrankJBN Feb 13, 2008 11:38 AM

                                          I didn't say I had a problem with the morality issue - I'm the meat eater.

                                          You seem to read my post entirely wrong: " It is certainly your perogative to break up with a meat eater over veal" Again, I don't know how you missed it, but I am the meat eater.

                                          I have found that those who believe it is immoral to eat meat are very often proselytizers of their viewpoint. Is it your experience that those who are vegetarians and vegans for the alleged moral reasons are generally tolerant of the slaughter and digestion of animals?

                                          "I can't see myself forcing my views on this grown man."

                                          You are very different from a lot of 'morality based' vegans, because indeed there are many who believe (as I posted) that it is equivalent to murder to slaughter for food and that human beings should not have rights or privileges that supercede those of animals.

                                          I am sure that you should have seen tape or at least read accounts of vegetarians shouting "Murderer!" and "You're the animal!" at hunters.

                                          1. re: FrankJBN
                                            Davwud Feb 13, 2008 11:43 AM

                                            I find it interesting that I don't see these people yelling "Murderer" to a lion and trying to convince them that Tofantelope is quite tasty.

                                            DT

                                            1. re: Davwud
                                              linguafood Feb 13, 2008 12:17 PM

                                              Dude, I have a friend (acquaintance) who is vegetarian, *very* involved in animal rescue, etc. -- which is all great in my book. But she actually believes that the world would be "a better place if we could also teach animals not to eat each other".....

                                              Guess nature just isn't moral enough '-)

                                              1. re: linguafood
                                                j
                                                jlafler Feb 13, 2008 05:47 PM

                                                Does she think the collapse of every ecosystem on earth will make the world a better place?

                                            2. re: FrankJBN
                                              Miss Needle Feb 13, 2008 12:40 PM

                                              "Heck, I had a relationship break up with a meat eater over veal."

                                              Sorry for misunderstanding your post. Totally got it the reverse. I interpreted that you broke up a relationship because you had a problem with a carnivore eating veal. My bad.

                                              And, btw, I'm not a vegan. I'm an omnivore, but try to limit my consumption of meats for many reasons that I won't get into here. But I do have a lot of vegetarian friends (for moral reasons), and they're not the preachy judgmental types -- probably because I choose not to surround myself with those type of people in general (whether or not I agree with their philosophies).

                                              Yes, and those vegetarians shouting "murderer" annoy me to no end. Just walked by New York's fashion week a few days ago, and witnessed PETA members yell just that to people wearing fur. Besides, I'm wondering if they tell whether people are wearing the real thing or not?

                                              1. re: FrankJBN
                                                j
                                                jlafler Feb 13, 2008 05:57 PM

                                                It's certainly true that there are self-righteous vegans and vegetarians. I dated one for a while, and he would never have gotten near me if I hadn't been a vegetarian (which I was at the time). When he would go off on one of his rants, sometimes I would say "You know, that just makes me want to go out and eat a nice big steak!" I wouldn't say this was why we broke up, but it was part of a pattern of rigidity and self-righteousness that eventually led me to break it off.

                                                On the other hand, having been a vegetarian for many years, I have also had a lot of opportunity to see how defensive people can be when they find out the person they're talking to is vegetarian. People were always saying things like "don't try to tell me not to eat meat," or "well, I'm not about to stop eating meat." Okaaaay. Believe it or not, my decision to be a vegetarian wasn't made simply to make you feel criticized. Eventually I quit mentioning it unless it was absolutely necessary (like, my co-workers were suggesting having lunch at a steak house), and even then, I never used the word "vegetarian" because it really seemed to set people off. I would say "i don't eat meat." So the projection and intolerance can go both ways.

                                                1. re: jlafler
                                                  MplsM ary Feb 13, 2008 08:18 PM

                                                  I've been a "non-meat eater" for over 30 years and I think I've seen almost the entire spectrum of vegetarianism.

                                                  I've never not dated anyone because they were a carnivore, nor have I been rejected because I don't eat meat. That I know of, anyway.

                                                  My one observation on the us vs. them mentality, the hardliner stance that some veggies take is that every single ranting, self-righteous vegetarian has turned out to be a fair weather vegetarian returning to an omnivorous diet usually within a year of adopting vegetarianism. I think it's because it takes so much energy to be the one who educates the world. It could also be because they lose a lot of friends.

                                        2. Miss Needle Feb 13, 2008 06:25 AM

                                          It is an interesting article. Food is an important element in bonding, but it's not everything. I'm actually a bit surprised by the people who won't date somebody because of different dietary preferences. However, I grew up in a family where my dad was super-strict about his health regimen than the rest of the family -- eg. strict vegetarian for a few years, no refined sugar, no fried foods, etc. It really didn't affect us. When we went out, we just made sure the restaurant would be able to accommodate him.

                                          Many years ago, I also used to live with a roommate that kept Kosher. Because I liked to spend time with her, I would eat at Kosher restaurants. Hey, I would even have pizza at Jerusalem II in Midwood, Brooklyn when the legendary DiFara was next door. It's really not that big of a deal. She opened me to a world of schwarma, malawah and burek.

                                          From the article:
                                          "Judging from postings at food Web sites like chowhound.com and slashfood.com, people seem more willing to date those who restrict their diet for health or religion rather than mere dislike."

                                          I'm not bothered by people who dislike different things. If you don't like something, you don't like something. But I do have problems with people who are close-minded and refuse to try new things because I feel that it reflects in other matters as well.

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