I was at the grocery store yesterday, and the cashier was checking out the woman in front of me who was buying her thanksgiving dinner - turkey and all. The cashier grabbed the turkey and wrapped it separately. I noticed she became very pale and obessively searched for the hand santitzer and applied it over and over and over. She apologized to me, saying she has been a vegetarian for over 30 years and the juice from the turkey was simply too much for her.
I have several friends who are strict vegans. While Thanksgiving represents something different for each of us, the obsession about glorifying the cruelty of animals for a feast in "vegan" eyes is particularly perturbing. The vegetarian community is a passionate one - for good reason. But beyond the cruelty factor, there are numerous reasons that people choose to become vegetarian including the health benefits. A recent study announced that red meat may be the cause of specific forms of cancer. Now I don't want to be the buzz kill to a good hamburger. The truth is, there is a range of diets and lifestyles all promoting healthier/organic ways of eating including: The Raw Foods Detox Diet,The 3 Season Diet and The Detox Diet just to name a few. The list can go on with the experts to support them. The days of denying the benefits of eating organically are slim and there are ways to still embrace meat within this manner. However, at the end of the day, it is about becoming conscious of our choices.
In my mind there is room for both Turducken (although an animal within an animal within an animal does seem extreme) and Tofurkey. And just like anything, before making a judgement regarding a certain lifestyle, it is best to educate ourselves to have a wider perspective and ultimately a better understanding to make more informed choices in our lives. If nothing else, remember Thanksgiving is about treasuring the people around you and giving gratitude for what is important, not just about the turkey:-) Happy Holiday!