Column #236    February 28, 2020

If you want to retain your right to make your own decisions about what you eat, it’s time you became somewhat of an activist. In spite of science there are ideologues out there who think they know what’s best for you and the planet. Alarmingly, some of their ideas are very destructive. In spite of that they are making inroads with the masses like you can’t imagine and, if the trend continues with the activists turning the world upside down, the health of mankind will be far worse off in the future than it is now.

The University of Edinburgh, founded in 1582, is the sixth oldest university in the English-speaking world and one of Scotland's ancient universities. It has five main campuses in the city of Edinburgh, with many of the buildings in the historic Old Town belonging to the university. Long ago it earned a reputation for being the chief intellectual center during the Age of Enlightenment which helped give Edinburgh the nickname of the Athens of the North. Now it’s ranked 20th in the world by the 2020 QS World University Rankings. Consequently, I assume the students have above average intellects . . . or do they?

On January 30, 2020, nearly 6,000 Edinburgh University students voted in a referendum to ban beef products from campus bars and cafes. With a total enrollment of about 33,500, this means only 17.9% of the students voted in the referendum. What’s shockingly unbelievable is that the referendum came within a whisker of passing when 42% of the “intellectuals” voted for it. If it had passed, about 10% of the student body would have dictated a beef ban on campus. Of course that would send a message to all students that beef is bad (far worse than growing and eating sugar) and veggies are best. And if that situation had come to pass, a small minority would have banned the world’s healthiest food from all of the university’s bars and cafes.1

The reasons for banning beef from being served in campus bars and cafes were the typical beliefs about global warming, animal cruelty, and healthy aspects of vegetarianism. Regarding these points Brandon Smith from Alt-Market has a colorful way of describing it. He says, “The problem with this dietary revolution is that it is based primarily on junk science and cherry-picked data, along with outright lies and propaganda. The majority of studies and articles covering this issue are decidedly biased, left leaning and collectivist in nature.”2

As I’ve pointed out before, the anti-beef methane argument is bogus claptrap. Very simply, methane slowly dissipates in the atmosphere. All of the methane created today (a cow belches) will have decomposed into CO2 in about ten years. Since the world’s cow herd is the same size today that it was in 1974, it’s mathematically impossible for cattle to have contributed to any methane increase in the atmosphere. Additionally, for more than 50,000 years cattle (and all other ruminants) have had a very strong symbiotic relationship with nature. That’s why a ruminant is a very sustainable food source, especially when it’s grass-fed. Also ignored by the activists is that cattle usually graze the grasslands that are uneconomic for vegetable crops. In so doing cattle convert something man can’t eat into the most nutritious food known to man.3

The animal cruelty argument is also bogus. In all cases raising livestock requires animals to be properly cared for. Mating pairs must be maintained year round with proper feed, shelter, and healthcare. Live births must result in young animals that stay alive and grow. All along the animal rearing spectrum up to and including the moment of harvest, performance is best when the animals are not abused. Therefore, there’s a monetary disincentive for abuse. Yes, in all professions there are bad actors. But the majority of people raising livestock do it out of love for the animals and they strive to keep them healthy and growing at a cost that often requires personal sacrifice on their part.4 5

The idea that plants are better for us to eat than meat is rather ridiculous when one understands the chemistry of foods. Only 5% of all known plants are edible. A vast majority are poisonous. They are poisonous because all plants produce protective toxins for self preservation. Obviously people can tolerate some of the natural toxins in selected plant-based foods before cooking and in other plant-based foods the toxins are only tolerated after cooking and/or soaking. Some plants produce hormones that can impact the hormone balance in humans. Most plant-based foods do not provide the same balance of essential nutrients that come from the foundation food for animal life which is the green leaf. In the animal world, well more than 95% of the known animals can be eaten without issues. In addition, most animals (especially those with the green leaf at the bottom of their food chain) have exactly all of the essential nutrients in the same balance that humans require.6 7 8

Maybe Amanda Ratke sums it up best when she says “Whether you eat meat or not is fine, so long as activists and the government don’t dictate to us what our diet should look like. Sin taxes, regulatory burdens on livestock producers and activists sneaking in ballot initiatives across the country are true and real threats to animal agriculture and to what we can afford to put on our dinner plate.”9

It’s truly unbelievable that I would be writing an article trying to preserve my right to raise, eat, and market the healthiest food on the planet for mankind. We are living in a whacked out (Omega-3 deficient) world and the MSM (mainstream media), university professors, elitists, and marketers of plant-based, highly processed, fake meats aren’t helping one bit. Some of the smartest people around us are the most ignorant and they are spreading their misinformation at a very rapid pace. What scares me is that their bogus messages continue to gain credibility on a daily basis!10

To your health.

Ted Slanker

Ted Slanker has been reporting on the fundamentals of nutritional research in publications, television and radio appearances, and at conferences since 1999. He condenses complex studies into the basics required for health and well-being. His eBook, The Real Diet of Man, is available online.

Don’t miss these links for additional reading:

1. Edinburgh University Students Vote to Reject Ban of Beef Products from Campus Bars and Cafes by Conor Matchett

2. Why Is The Elitist Establishment So Obsessed With Meat? by Brandon Smith from Alt-Market

3. You've Been Lied to: Methane & Cows by Ted Slanker

4. Humane Slaughter by Ted Slanker

5. National Disgrace by Ted Slanker

6. Plants vs. Plant Eaters by Ted Slanker

7. The Hysterical Meat Debate by Ted Slanker

8. New Food Analysis Tables by Ted Slanker

9. Are Consumers Really Cutting Back on Meat? by Amanda Radke

10. We Need to Talk about Vegans: Should New Zealand Embrace a Meatless Future? by Amber-Leigh Woolf and Warwick Rasmussen

Another viewpoint . . .

Only Dramatic, Direct Action Will Save the American Beef Industry by Tom DeWeese from the American Policy Center