Tag Archives: go vegetarian this summer!

🍐🍅🥦Food Fight! It’s Fruits vs. Vegetables!🍎🌽

By Scott Miller

🥦🥬🥒🫑❤️ art: PETA

Yesterday was “National Eat More Fruits and Vegetables Day,” which sounds like an order. People don’t like to be told what to do. However, the sentiment is well intentioned.

We’re told to eat fruits and vegetables rather than vegetables and fruits. Fruit is always in front — at the supermarket, on our refrigerator shelves, even alphabetically. Most people prefer fruits to vegetables, and not just because fruit tastes better. Fruit is fun and wacky. Vegetables are serious and sensible. Grapes are the life of the party. Lettuce sits in the corner, complaining about the loud music. Candy is fruit flavored. Mixed drinks are fruit flavored. Tasty treats aren’t vegetable flavored. “Have a Popsicle — it’s cabbage.”

But both fruits and vegetables are ideal foods for compassionate people concerned about the well-being of all sentient beings, as animals don’t suffer for your pomegranates and carrots. In that sense, we could call it National Eat More Fruits and Vegetables and Kellogg’s Frosted Mini-Wheats Cereal Day. (Mini-Wheats are vegan!) And there are bonus health benefits. Produce is good for you. Most other things are not. Aside from the pork industry and heart attack fetishists, nobody is encouraging you to eat more pigs.

Both fruits and vegetables are packed with vitamins and minerals and are rich in fiber and antioxidants. Because fruit is higher in sugar and calories than vegetables, nutritionists say that vegetables are better. On the other hand, a tricycle is more fuel efficient than a Porsche. That doesn’t make it the superior vehicle. It’s unlikely that America’s obesity problem is due to fruit consumption. Doctors never tell their patients, “You’re eating too many apples.” Want to get in shape? Less butter, more bananas.

Of course, diet is not just about health. Vegans eat all kinds of food, as long as it doesn’t involve the exploitation of animals. One could also refer to me as a “Pop-Tartan” (but not the frosted kind, made with animal byproducts). The misconception that vegans eat only vegetables has to do with these two words’ sharing the same first three letters: V-E-G. And although we encourage cashiers to try cashews, we also suggest that they eat strawberries and broccoli — and say “have a nice day” less often if they don’t really mean it.

Yeah, vegetables are the poor cousins of fruits. Passion fruit sounds sexy. Dragon fruit sounds mystical. Peas and leeks sound like bodily functions. “Life is not a bowl of cherries” implies that cherries are sweet and enjoyable. Life is not a cluster of artichokes, and thank God for that. Yet vegetables have a fresh, natural flavor. Celery and bell peppers are crisp and pure and unprocessed and feel like they belong in your mouth. Nobody regrets having eaten a side salad.

The same can’t be said for a chili dog. Plus, as a meatless option, vegetables are also entrées: mushroom burgers, cauliflower wings, eggplant meatballs. So give vegetables their due.

But while the battle between fruits and vegetables rages on, we are lacking in both. Only one in 10 adults eats enough greens. Consumption is especially low among younger Americans — not surprising since TikTok isn’t classified as a vegetable. Strategies for increasing our fruit and vegetable intake include expanding local agriculture programs and promoting community gardens.

From a purely scientific standpoint, animals have nervous systems and brains, allowing them to feel pleasure and joy. This same biology explains the fear, frustration, and physical pain they experience when people use them for food. Fruits and vegetables don’t feel pain. When you punch the air, it’s possible that you’re hurting ghosts. Rational thought tells us otherwise. Use your brain. If zucchini welfare is still a concern, however, know that eating produce directly — rather than feeding it to animals killed for their flesh — requires fewer plants and doesn’t hurt animals, who we know feel pain.

Meat, eggs and dairy are environmentally unsustainable, bad for our health, and deadly for animals. We shouldn’t need a special day to remind us what to put in our bodies. Visit a peach orchard. Then go to a slaughterhouse. Stroll through a cornfield on a sunny day. Then walk the dark corridors of a factory farm, rows and rows of hens kept in tiny metal battery cages used as egg-laying machines. It’s enough to make you want to eat more fruits and vegetables.




🌸Mother’s Day Reflections: How Motherhood Differs for Humans and Factory Farm Animals🐖🐄🐣

By Amy Snyder

Love and respect all animals! art: PETA

The day my daughter was born was one of the happiest days of my life. I spent five hours in labor and gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. I had been paranoid that something would go wrong, so I was overjoyed that she was healthy. Our bond was instantaneous: I spent my days and nights holding and feeding her, never wanting to let her go.

Now, if I were a cow in a factory farm, my precious infant would have been taken away from me shortly after birth, and no amount of bellowing would have brought her back. In the dairy industry, newborn calves are taken from their mothers so that that the milk meant for them can be “stolen” by humans.

Think about it: Cows produce milk for the same reason humans do — to nourish their young. For cows exploited in the dairy industry, birth is nothing to celebrate. Female calves are turned into virtual milk machines like their mothers. They’re artificially inseminated soon after their first birthday and forced to churn out babies every year, only to see them taken away. It’s a never-ending cycle of trauma and cruelty.

When a cow’s milk production wanes, usually when she’s only 4 or 5 years old, she’s worthless to the dairy industry. She ends up at the slaughterhouse, bloodied, dangling by a hind leg with her throat cut.

Even the thought of my baby being taken from me, never to be seen again, brings me immeasurable anguish. I’m sure you can understand why I’m so thankful not to be a cow!! Male calves aren’t exempt from misery. They are often slated to be someone’s dinner. Instead of playing and making friends, they’re chained in cramped stalls and raised for veal. Fed a formula that’s low in iron so they’ll be anemic, their flesh stays pale. Normal muscle growth is stunted to produce tender meat. These youngsters are usually killed when they’re between 3 and 18 weeks old. I wouldn’t wish that fate on anyone.

My heart breaks when I think about how it’s inflicted on other mothers and their babies simply because they aren’t humans.

Mother pigs exist in ghastly gestation crates — cages that are just 2 feet wide and too small for them even to turn around or lie down comfortably!

Pigs are as intelligent as dogs.

And although mother hens cluck to their chicks before they even hatch and the chicks peep back through their shells, they’ll never spend a single minute together since the eggs are taken by humans.
Being a mom has its challenges and heartaches — don’t get me wrong. But I didn’t have to endure heart-wrenching torment in the dairy, meat or egg industry.

We should all be outraged that mothers, human or not, are subjected to the agony of losing their offspring, especially for something frivolous and unnecessary. We have so many vegan options nowadays, including oat and almond milks and all the dairy-free foods that can be made from them.

So this Mother’s Day and all year round, please show compassion for all mothers by choosing tasty vegan foods, as my daughter and I do!



Go, Jim, go!💙💙🎻🌺 … and … O Canada!🍀🌸🌹🌷💐

McGovern Profile Photo 1ab(1)
Congressman Jim McGovern


Bipartisan Group of Lawmakers Increase Veterans Service Dog Program Funding By $2 Million

editor’s note: I’ve made some sentences bold. – R.T.

The U.S. House of Representatives approved last week a bipartisan measure from Reps. Jim McGovern (D-MA) and Martha McSally (R-AZ) to increase funding for the Wounded Warrior Service Dog Program by $2 million.

The measure was passed as part of the FY 2018 Department of Defense Appropriations Bill and was also led by Reps. Carol Shea-Porter (D-NH), Walter Jones (R-NC), and Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ).

“With so many veterans returning from war bearing both physical and emotional scars, we must do all we can to provide treatment that works. The Wounded Warrior Service Dog program has helped countless veterans and military families. Providing grant opportunities for groups professionally engaged in this field is critical to ensuring that our military and veterans receive the care they deserve,” Rep. McGovern said. “I am proud to join with Republicans and Democrats on this bipartisan measure to increase funding for this program and continue to support our veterans as they come home from serving our country.”

“Those who know and love animals like I do understand that they have a unique ability to bring service and healing to our wounded warriors,” Rep. McSally said. “Therapeutic service dog training program is an important program, and by increasing funding more service dogs will be placed with veterans. I was pleased to support this amendment.”

“For many service members suffering from PTSD and TBI, training service dogs to help other service members and veterans can be an effective, non-pharmaceutical therapy that gives comfort and purpose,” said Rep. Shea-Porter. “I am happy our bipartisan work has secured $2 million to expand this and other programs, which are having a positive impact on so many lives.”

“Our men and women in uniform deserve the best care when they return home from service,” said Rep. Jones. “By individually training service dogs for the physical or emotional needs of an individual veteran, the Wounded Warrior Service Dog Program has helped countless service members and military families with their transition and healing process – I could not think of a better program to support. Thank you to all of my colleagues for backing this exceptional program that helps our nation’s heroes.”

“Service dogs have a proven therapeutic role in helping wounded warriors heal. As a representative of military communities in South Jersey and proud dog owner, I applaud this bipartisan effort to fund a program that provides our heroes access to the care they deserve and the treatments they need,” Rep. LoBiondo said.

Administered by the Department of Defense, the Wounded Warrior Service Dog Grant Program supports non-profit organizations whose mission is to address physical and mental health needs of service members and veterans with assistance from service dogs. This program was funded at $1 million in Fiscal Year 2015, $5 million in Fiscal Year 2016, and $5 million in Fiscal Year 2017. With the passage of this amendment, the House bill aims to fund this program at $7 million for Fiscal Year 2018.

Many of our service members and veterans return home from the battlefield suffering from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), traumatic brain injury (TBI), blindness or impaired vision, the loss of a limb, paralysis, impaired mobility, loss of hearing, and other mental and physical disabilities. Sadly, too many also struggle with suicidal thoughts and the inability to reintegrate into the social framework of their families and communities. Working with a trained service dog is a promising form of therapy and assistance for these veterans and service members, one that has already been proven to help civilians who confront similar mental and physical disabilities.

Through a highly technical regimen that can take up to two years, non-profit organizations customize the training of each dog to assist its future owner. Depending on the owner’s needs, these dogs can be trained to retrieve medicine from a refrigerator, turn the lights on and scan an empty house before the owner enters, guard an owner’s back in a public setting, and even wake an owner up from a nightmare.

In its three years of existence, the Wounded Warrior Service Dog Program has allowed non-profit organizations to train and pair over 250 highly sophisticated service dogs with veterans in need. The additional $2 million would help place an additional 45 to 60 service dogs with veterans industry wide.


Make America great: follow Canada’s recommendations!

By Heather Moore

Know what would really make America great? If we followed in Canada’s footsteps and revised our national food guidelines to favor plant-based over animal-based protein.

Our neighbor to the north’s new dietary recommendations, which will likely be issued by Health Canada next year, are expected to specify plant-based foods as the preferred source of protein and to call for the regular consumption of fruit, vegetables, whole grains and other vegan foods.

At least one news outlet has speculated that — because Canada is so culturally diverse, much like the U.S., and because many ethnic groups can’t digest cow’s milk — dairy products won’t be included in the new recommendations at all.

While it remains to be seen if the Canadian government will officially urge citizens to eat beans not beef, many media outlets have already reported on one anticipated — and sensible — guideline: Don’t eat foods that contain mostly saturated fat (i.e., meat, eggs and dairy products) and opt instead for healthy plant-based foods, which also tend to be more environmentally friendly.

That’s sound, science-based advice — not industry-pandering. Canada is one of the world’s largest beef producers, and ranchers and feedlot operators likely didn’t break into a chorus of “O Canada” when they heard that government officials were planning to promote plant-based foods. But it’s the right thing to do, and hopefully Health Canada will hold firm to its mission.

I also hope the U.S. Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee will implement strong guidelines favoring plant-based foods. America’s fruited plains and amber waves of grain are overrun with animal factories and slaughterhouses, and we’ll all be healthier if we stop eating animal-based foods.

We know this. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics in Chicago — the world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals — has pointed out that people who eat mostly plant-based foods are less likely to suffer from obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer.

A 2016 position statement by the academy revealed that people can reduce their risk of developing diabetes by 62 percent, suffering from heart disease by 29 percent and succumbing to any form of cancer by 18 percent just by going vegan. Vegan men reduce their likelihood of developing prostate cancer by 35 percent.

The U.S. advisory committee has acknowledged that a diet high in plant-based foods is “more health promoting and is associated with lesser environmental impact.”

But meat industry groups spent hundreds of thousands of dollars fighting to keep “eat less meat” from appearing in the 2015–2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans — that’s why they allow fatty, cholesterol-laden animal-based foods.

Other countries have already taken steps to promote more nutritious, vegan foods. Last year, for example, the Netherlands began advising people to eat a lot less meat — no more than two servings per week — and to replace it with plant foods. The United Kingdom also encourages residents to cut back on animal protein. Brazil puts an emphasis on native plants and minimally processed foods.

The U.S. will have to consider similar guidelines as public-health problems — and Americans’ waistlines — continue to expand. Let’s all avoid the “red tape” and opt for vegan foods well before our dietary guidelines are scheduled to be revised.

Doing so will help local farmers who grow flavorful, health-promoting fruits and vegetables — like red delicious apples, sweet white corn and juicy blueberries. It will also support innovative vegan businesses, such as Beyond Meat, Impossible Foods and Memphis Meats, three California companies that have made headlines for producing mouthwatering plant-based meats. Most of all, it will benefit our health, the environment and animals — and that will help make America a truly great nation.


TRADER JOE’S GROCERY STORE ON ROUTE 9 IN SHREWSBURY – just over the bridge – is a GREAT PLACE TO BEGIN YOUR VEGGIE ADVENTURES! Organic fruits and vegetables, nondairy icecream and yogurt that is SO TASTY💙, frozen dinners, sauces, mock meats, spices, cakes, cookies … ALL SO INEXPENSIVE and yummy! Love shopping here! – Rose T.

Trader Joe crackers – $1.39 – a staple at Rose’s shack. Center: Vintage thermos David C. gave Rose. She’s made a centerpiece of it so Davey is always hanging out in her kitchen☕☕! pics: R.T.





You can order these cute undies at PETA.ORG!😉