This is a long way of introducing an article in Texas Monthly that made me sad. Not angry, not wanting to engage in ad hominem attacks, but just sad. I should note that I have written for Texas Monthly (about chicken fried steak, no less!), that it's a first rate magazine, and that I know and look up to many writers there. But I should also note that the magazine used to do a lot of great capsule music reviews, got rid of them, and hired a full time BBQ editor, a decision that earned the magazine considerable national attention. It was an article by that very editor, which ran yesterday, that led me to respond. The piece is here.
I must confess to being put off by the fact that the author, Daniel Vaughn, invited readers to share concerns with his cholesterol level as an occupational hazard. I found this to be a particularly strange request given that his occupation requires the slaughter of sentient animals for food we do not need. That said, my initial response was a bit unfair.
I tweeted: "What marks life as full time BBQ editor? Blissful ignorance to animal suffering, evidently." This tweet implied that Vaughn was indeed ignorant of what his celebrated diet represented-that is, that he had not justified his decision to support unnecessary animal slaughter. Perhaps he has. Perhaps he could illuminate the matter for me (and I'm being serious here). He responded: "why the comment about my ignorance? It's as silly and myopic as me suggesting you're ignorant to the tastiness of meat."Fine. So, I'm now wondering: what is that justification?" Fair enough. So if you've justified your choice to eat animals raised for meat, where I can read/hear about it? I'm eager to learn."