Today in the United States it is the Thanksgiving Day and the US Department of Agriculture has estimated that well 47 million turkeys they will be cooked for what can be considered the party most felt by Americans. Yesterday at the White House, as usual, one of them received the "presidential pardonAnd will spend the rest of his life on a farm with the other survivors "forgiven" by former presidents, a practice introduced in 1947 by Harry Truman. For all the other turkeys, however, there will be no escape, the oven and the famous blueberry sauce await them.
Il Tanksgiving Day is a recurrence dating back to 1621 day when the Pilgrim Fathers, who arrived in America after leaving England in search of religious freedom, shared the fruits of the harvest with the Native Americans who had helped them to survive in the New World and taught them to raise an animal they had never seen before: the turkey. It was in 1863 that President Abraham Lincoln made Thanksgiving a national holiday and decided that it should be celebrated every fourth Thursday in November. And what better way than to always eat that famous, but also mysterious animal?
A tradition that has lasted for years, therefore, but which is becoming more and more object of criticism of animal rights movements and the promoters of vegetarian diets. From PETA, the well-known movement for the ethical treatment of animals that is stoically striving to persuade Americans to change the Thanksgiving menu for a less gory one.
"If you are eating a turkey, you have a corpse on the table" you can read on the website of the association that published for the occasion i 10 reasons not to eat turkey on this anniversary.
1) Turkeys are intelligent animals with personality and character as well as a deep awareness of their surroundings. As University of Oregon scientist Tom Savage demonstrates, turkeys are social and playful birds that enjoy the company of others. Anyone who spends time with them on a farm quickly learns that turkeys have different and distinct personalities.
2) Contrary to what one is led to believe, the Turkey meat is high in fat and cholesterol (244 mg). Research has shown i Vegetarians are 50% less likely to develop heart disease and the 40% of getting cancer from meat eaters. Furthermore, carnivores are 9 times more likely to be obese than vegans.
3) Risk of "pandemic": Experts warn that a new virulent strain of bird flu it could spread to humans and kill millions of Americans. The current conditions under which turkeys are bred and drugged to grow so quickly that they can barely walk are ideal for causing and developing hearths of the disease. Eating a dead turkey contaminated with bird flu could kill, and there are currently no drugs to counteract the disease. Cooking the turkey should kill the virus, but it could contaminate cutting boards and utensils and thus spread through other foods.
4) Contamination of the meat The US government is the only government in the Western world that it does not have the power to recall contaminated animal products. Dan Glickman, secretary of agriculture under the Clinton presidency, explained that this limit to the US Department of Agriculture's (USDA) that denies the power to protect consumers from contaminated animal products is "one of the biggest shortcomings". And in the turkey meat they were found several types of bacteria, including Salmonella. The Center for Science in the Public Interest, for example, found that the 28 percent of fresh turkeys on the market are contaminated.
5) Let the turkeys thank you too Thanksgiving Day should be a time to take stock of your life and give thanks for everything you have, so why do you have to eat a decaying corpse? Why not let the turkeys thank you too?
6) Antibiotics and growth drugs The administration of antibiotics to stimulate the growth of turkeys in a short time and the drugs with which they are bombarded to prevent disease can also pose risks to the people who eat them. Health organizations including the World Health Organization, the American Medical Association, and the American Public Health Association have warned that by getting powerful drugs (through animal products) to humans who are not sick, the animal husbandry industry animals could create serious long-term risks to human health spreading "supergerms ”resistant to antibiotics. For this reason, the use of drugs to promote growth in animals used for food has, fortunately, been banned for many years in Europe.
7) The cruelties suffered by turkeys in intensive farming In intensive farming, turkeys live crammed for months in sheds where they cannot even flap a wing or stretch a leg, submerged in their excrement with the fumes and ammonia of the urine that burn their eyes and lungs. At the slaughterhouse then the turkeys are slaughtered while they are still conscious.
8) Environmental impact Turkeys, and all other animals raised for food, produce 130 times more excrement than the entire population of the United States, all without the benefit of any waste treatment system. There are no federal guidelines to regulate the storage and disposal of the trillions of pounds of untreated animal droppings they produce each year.
9) Exploitation of workers Killing animals is a dangerous job in itself, but the speed of the killing rates, the dirty and slippery floors, as well as the lack of training, make the poultry plants one of the most dangerous places to work in America today. The industry has refused to slow production or buy adequate safety gear as such changes could affect costs. This is what emerges from the 185-page complaint about the exploitation of workers by the animal husbandry industry, "Blood, Sweat, and Fear: The Violation of the Rights of Poultry Plant Workers," by Human Rights Watch, which shed light on the many human rights violations in the meat and poultry sector.
10) An alternative exists There are alternatives to turkey meat, with vegetarian recipes that will give you something to be truly grateful for on Thanksgiving.