Gardeners and Farmers Less Fearful of Death?

From Gene Logsdon

When our bed of irises (in the photo above) bloom for one brief but glorious week in late May, I think, strangely enough, of a letter a friend of mine received from a doctor in Minnesota. The doctor observed that in his medical practice, rural people face the prospect of dying with more equanimity than urbanites.

He theorizes that people who live close to the natural world and to farm life have their thinking shaped by the way life and death follow each other up and down the food chain every day. They understand that death is the unavoidable way of nature and it applies to everything and everyone. Urban people more often live in a sort of surrealistic plastic bubble where they never see a nice neighborhood doggy tear the guts out of a lamb or a cute raccoon slaughter a henhouse full of chickens. They have never seen a hog die after having its throat slit to bleed properly so that the meat tastes the way they want it to taste. They do not associate their eating with anything dying. They become paranoid at the realization that they must die too and try to find ways to avoid every possible or even imagined threat of death that comes their way. That doctor didn’t say it, but mine would add that this paranoia is adding 500 billion unnecessary dollars to the cost of Medicare and Medicaid programs according to recent statistics.

I suppose that there are quite a few urban people living in areas of high crime rates who are even more conscious of the inevitability of death than rural people who care for animals or must deal with the wild animal kingdom, but generally speaking, I think the good doctor has it right. I would add gardeners in the group of those who accept death philosophically. There is an underbelly of sadness to the delights of gardening. The flowers in the photo above, mostly irises, are the result of my wife’s nearly year-round care, but peak bloom lasts hardly a week around Decoration Day. Some flowers last less than that. I am particularly fond of a little wild one, purple cress, that comes up and blooms for three days in our lawn in April when it is often still very chilly. For it to prosper I have to wait until it matures and goes to seed in June before mowing where it grows. So for three days of enjoyment, we wait all year and then have to endure a shaggy lawn all of May. I don’t mind the unkempt lawn because it is much more interesting that plain old grass, but visitors infected with Neatness Disease get very nervous at our unmowed sward.

To develop the knack of being able to enjoy the temporary nature of all existence is the secret of happiness, I think. It requires the realization that the fullness of life means weeping as well as laughing. It also means that what dies down does rise up again and so preserves our hope for the future.

The paranoia so rampant in society right now stems at least partly from the fact that so many people lead a life sheltered from the reality of nature. They don’t see life the way it really is: the entire food chain sits at a huge banquet table, eating and being eaten. Such people begin to entertain strange ideas. For instance, if we would just quit eating meat, some of them think, many of our problems could be solved including not having livestock exhaling and emitting carbon dioxide. I think most of us eat too much meat too, but it is impossible to solve any carbon dioxide problems by getting rid of livestock, as some people seem to believe. Nature abhors a vacuum. Take the domesticated animals away, and the land no longer used to raise livestock would fill with wildlife. It already is happening and eventually something will have to be done about it.

Herds of deer, sometimes thirty or more in number, are now roaming at will over the farmlands where I live. If they were cows, people would be having fits. Eventually, if we quit eating meat, there would be just as many wild animals burping and farting as there are livestock now. I ask people affected by carbon-phobia how much carbon emission comes from squirrels, rabbits, groundhogs, geese, deer, bears, elk, rats, birds, not to mention dogs, cats and horses etc. etc. etc. No one seems to know. The only concern at the moment is about getting rid of cows, as if these are the only animals that belong in the equation.

I have another question: how much less carbon emission would follow if the 6.5 billion human beings on earth would all just quit eating beans. The carbon phobic society doesn’t seem to have thought of that. They are too busy worrying about death from cow breath.


And speaking of Catherine Friend…

If you want an excellent introduction to farming life with a healthy dose of humor and pathos, read her _Hit by a Farm: How I stopped worrying and learned to love the barn_. It’s sort of a memoir/autobiography of how she decided to follow her partner’s dream of being a farmer – even when her own dream was that of being a published author. I haven’t read _the Compassionate Carnivore_ (I’ll look for it now) but I did learn way more about sheep in _Hit by a Farm_ than I ever knew before. Despite the honest and gritty portrayal, I almost have a friend with land talked into getting Icelandic sheep!

Kerri in AK

I too raise sheep and do not dock the tails ever and are not given any less of a price at the stockyards. We are in Ontario, so things may be different in the US. We raise Katadin’s which are hair sheep and they do not have the same issues with manure on the tail as do wool sheep. In fact, to register a Katadin, you must not dock the tail

Gene –

You’re right in what you say. It occurs to me almost every day now as I run beetle patrols on my potatoes. I find ’em and I crush ’em. But a couple of times I have seen one rise up on its hind legs and face the fingers decending on it. I’m always thinking that I wish I didn’t have to kill these other creatures.

But I also know that in fact we can’t have life without death as well. The greatest number of creatures occurs in spring and early summer, with all the new young ones being born/hatched. But the young ones for any species are also the food for other creatures trying to feed their young ones. So I quell my sympathies for the beetles because I want the potatoes as food for my family and myself. Really, there is no other way. Is there any other species that would feel a twinge of sorrow for having to kill in order to survive?

Aarti, I guess there can be no agreement in the debate over animal vs. vegetable. But if you love nature, as you obviously do, you have to take nature as a whole and nature cannot be nature without killing. This is, at least for me, why life is ultimately so sad. To say that it is horrible to kill and eat animals and not horrible to kill and eat vegetables just flies in the face of reality. Perhaps that is why melancholy is my usual mood. Gene

I really liked the first half of the article but the second half appeared a bit disconnected. I do wonder whether the CO2 type arguments are more just arguments. Sort of like the people who say the rain forests should be saved because of the life saving medicines that can be harnessed from within them. I think the people who really love nature and the rain forests honestly don’t give a hoot about their pharmaceutical potential. These are arguments to try and convince others who don’t share their love. As a city person who recently became vegetarian, I can say I did so upon realizing how I did not connect enough with death and slaughter involved. Like Jan Steinman, I cannot kill an animal so I felt it hypocritical to eat meat. The meat industry and slaughterhouses are horrific and cruel to me – I cannot imagine anyone who would disagree even if they do have a philosophical or religious “out”. CO2 was the last thing on my mind as a reason. It is a simply personal choice.

I remember the discussion in Catherine’s book about trying to catch the lambs. Had me laughing out loud. I don’t have sheep, but from what I’ve read, sounds like docking lambs’ tails is good for their health and doesn’t really hurt them much, especially at that very young age.

I started a flock of sheep with ewe lambs that came from the flock of sheep on Catherine and melissa’s farm. Very aggressive, attentive ewes. I lamb on grass and catching lambs after they are up is just like trying to catch a calf. The ewe takes off and the lambs follow, good luck. I do dock tails with bands and it seems pretty harmless to the lambs.

I don’t have any lambs or other livestock, and therefore have no experience. Was hoping to have some chickens this year but had to cancel out. Unfortunately, Friend does not appear to discuss docking lambs’ tails. Dennis

DennisP, as a shepherd I’m sure I will find Friend’s book interesting. I have an “ethical dilemma” with sheep myself. Tail docking. I am still cutting tails off of lambs (the rubber band method) to avoid the problem of maggots on manury butts. I’ve tried not docking, sometimes with good results, sometimes not. I left tails on two this year and they are okay yet, but not as clean as I’d like. But having observed animals closely for years and years now, I am not convinced that the pain involved is any greater than that of a child getting a medical shot. Any thoughts? Gene

Gene – There is an interesting book on the problem of factory vs. pasture livestock farming by Catherine Friend. The book is titled The Compassionate Carnivore. She writes about the sheep farm that she and her partner operate. She long was a conventional eater (burgers and fries, etc.) and once they began their farm, she had to confront a host of ethical and other issues about livestock farming. It kind of began at an ag fair where she saw a conventionally raised (caged, etc) sow and piglets being shown. It bothered her so much she went and bought a pig-on-a-stick thing to eat and later realized what she had done. A really interesting book to read about her farming experiences and ethical dilemmas. She admits she is not perfect but is heading in the right direction with her eating. And that’s about where I am.

Kyle, I had not been familiar with that term, thread drift, until you started commenting. I am surely the champion thread drifter of the century. My threads drift like gossamer in the wind.
Paula, how much I agree. If I ever become a vegetarian it will be becuase of my revulsion at the way animals are kept in factory confinement. I think from my experiences that it is economical and practical to raise livestock almost entirely on pasture and hay crops. Gene Logsdon

wow, it took a while to read through all the comments on this post! i love the group of people who are reading and sharing ideas here. And Gene, thanks for responding and keeping the dialogue lively.

i just wanted to respond to the earlier topic regarding carbon emissions and meat eating.

taking milk or eggs from animals, or eating the animals themselves makes us a participant in the food chain in a way that i believe is natural to some degree. but what about animals raised in filthy, unnatural, high stress indoor environments in extremely close quarters? i know none of the readers here are defenders of factory farms, yet i also know that as a dweller of an urban part of new jersey, finding eggs or milk from naturally raised animals is a definite challenge.

just because we are comfortable with the idea of eating meat, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t examine the lives of the animals we eat. to me it is important, even for selfish reasons, that the animal whose eggs or milk i consume was living a healthy, peaceful, natural life.

animals raised in confinement on factory farms must be miserable, ill, and incredibly stressed. they are full of hormones and antibiotics.

i don’t want my dollars to support those factories of misery. and i don’t think it’s a wise choice to eat foods that come from those operations either.

finally, hasn’t it been established that dangerous viruses originate in those operations and then spread and threaten lives?

so, for me it’s more an issue of “how was it raised?”

I haven’t read Gideon’s Spies, but that looks like a fascinating book – I’ll have to check it out. It looks a bit like “Guilt by Association” by Jeff Gates, which is an incredible book about the Mossad’s use of game theory and asymmetric information to play governments against each other.

I’ve just been reading and listening to interviews with authors and investigators of the Vatican. Here’s a recent article from the Guardian:

I’ve even heard credible accounts that the Vatican bank became the depository for the various treasures and gold stolen by the Nazis during WW2.

Is this now the official winner for most “thread drift” ever in a gardening blog?

Geez, you all write such intriguing responses that I just HAVE to respond again too. I meant to comment on Dennis saying he reads Charles Walters. Chuck was my friend, a very remarkable person and a prophet of sorts. I wrote a blog about him on this website once. Kyle you mention the Vatican Bank!!! Do you read the things I read? Especially Gideon’s Spies, which I am now reading, has several chapters on the financial skullduggery that the Vatican Bank has been involved in. And Kerri, YES, purposelessness is the right word, not pointlessness. And if your purpose in life is to remain relatively free by remaining relatively poor, you can’t lose. Gene

Kerri – Isn’t that so true:”an identity based on what you could buy”? Or based on your level of income and ostentatious consumption? Is there a more meaningless sense of identity? Buying for reasons of prestige, status, keeping up w/ the Joneses. When did we lose the idea that we buy what our lives need, or what really gives us pleasure, or that helps us be more productive?

We need to stimulate the economy with tons of federal spending to get ourselves out of this recession that has devastated so many people. That’s good “economics”, but the whole idea of a society that is based on spending, just spending, for whatever, in order to keep people employed, is really weird I’m thinking more and more. Marketers are highly prized and paid because they know how to get us to “want” and buy what we never knew we wanted.

Geez, it’s enough to make me want to go Amish!!


The papacy is indeed a strange institution (not so much as the Vatican Bank!) but there have certainly been a handful of popes who played a positive role in opposing the imperial powers of their day. Ratzinger may be a bit too “traditional,” but I’m finding that the whole Nazi accusation is totally unfounded, and he’s a tremendously thoughtful and intelligent person. (Then again, he hired Henry Kissinger as an advisor, so what the heck do I know?)

Dennis, I’m glad to see another Charles Walters reader. I’d like to sit the many modern-day Schumpeter (or should I say Ron Paul) devotees in a room and make them read “Unforgiven.”

DennisP – I’m envious! I’m really tired of being employed outside of my home and then trying to do all those “home” things afterwards! Very little satisfaction out of what I spend most of my time doing. Bleah!

Gene – a comment on pointlessness. Recently, a 60 year old friend of mine attempted suicide. He’d retired at 55 from a government job he detested but had not found relief in his retirement. He’s got a variety of issues going on but one that was crystal clear to me was that he was purposeless. He desperately wanted to be useful to himself and to others but could not find ways to do so. A mutual friend (who got him to a hospital) with a herd of goats and 80 acres of Alaska woodlands has again brought him out to help with the various projects she always seems to have. It’s helping but slowly. I guess it’s too many years of believing in an identity based on what you could buy. That, of course, is a different pointlessness than what faced those farmers and rural people you mentioned who killed themselves – or perhaps it isn’t?

Kerri in AK

Thanks to all who participate in these forums. This kind of discussion is exactly why I continue to follow this site. I certainly believe that those who are closer to the cycle of life will be neither dismayed nor surprised at death and whatever may occur afterwards (if anything). I lean towards some kind of recycle/rebirth, as that seems to be the way it goes for everything else, but I think Socrates’ essay summed it up best.

Dennis, it is most gratifying to learn that you taught economics for 30 years. Most of the economists I know have quite a different philosophy than you express and I think in their teaching did more harm than good. And while in retirement you live the real economic life, some of those economists—I have specific ones in mind— spend their golden parachute retirements playing golf in rich retirement oases. I salute you.
Kyle, a great passage. I am not all that enamoured of Ratziner or the papacy in general, or instutional religion of any kind but that’s another story. Gene Gene

Every decade brings change, which Jos. Schumpeter once described as “creative destruction”: it raises the fortunes of some and cuts the legs out from under others. And too often it is aided and abetted by the rich and powerful at the expense of the poor. See the current crisis in the dairy industry where prices are essentially set by a small group of dairy processors, while the individual dairy farmer has no influence at all on price. When you see your farm being taken away from you, that is more than the loss of one’s abstract livelihood (like losing one’s urban job, where you just go on to search for another). It is the loss of who you are and of the unique kind of life you live. Of course so many of them have over-extended and gotten caught in the debt trap, thus feeling a real desperation. It’s no wonder so many are using a shotgun exit. Charles Walters made the same point in his novel Beast of Muddy Brain.

Gene, I really liked your discussions of the Amish in your book Living at Nature’s Pace. It seems like so many of them just want to make enough money to live a decent life and keep their farms. And that’s not too difficult when your farm is essentially paid off or at least you are not over-extended on debt because of continuing expansion. And their sense of economics is far different – and I think more realistic for them – than what is taught in conventional business and economics programs. I should know since that’s what I did (teach economics) for 30+ years.

But this evening I’m pleasantly tired from my day’s activities around our homestead, feeding the rhubarb and asparagus, cutting poles in our woods to stake up our tomatoes, and other activities. I can look back on the day’s activities and know what exactly I have accomplished. And I know that in the end, I’ll have a good harvest and Cathy and I will have good meals (weather cooperating). What other purpose have humans ever really had?

I’m reading a book at the moment which is a long interview with Joseph Ratzinger, before he became pope (I’m not particularly “Catholic,” but he is quite a remarkable fellow). There’s a nice passage that I think relates well to this issue:

“Life doesn’t exist in contradictions, but it does exist in paradoxes. A joyfulness based on willful blindness to the horrors of history would ultimately be a lie or a fiction, a kind of withdrawal. But the converse is also true. Those who have lost the capacity to see that even in an evil world the Creator still shines through are at bottom no longer capable of existing. They become cynical, or they have to say farewell to life altogether. In this sense, the two things belong together: the refusal to evade the abysses of history and of man’s existence, and then the insight that faith gives us that the good is present, even if we aren’t always able to connect the two things. Particularly when one has to resist evil it’s all the more important not to fall into a gloomy moralism that doesn’t allow itself any joy but really to see how much beauty there is, too, and to draw from it the strength needed to resist what destroys joy.”

Kyle and Dennis, your remarks prompted more thought. I realized that as a husbandman, I have grown not only to accept death a little better than I used to, but even to expect it, especially with sheep. As rural people close to nature, we see every day the dangers and threats ranked against our work as farmers, but for me that has a salutatory affect rather than too much pessimism. I am so pleased when things work out well agaomst all odds that I forget all the angst and know that I will go on living this way as long as I can.
About suicides: I am particularly upset by the number of teenagers who take their own lives. I too want to say that it is because today’s world seems so pointless to so many. But I have been reading old local newspapers from my area and am horrified at how common suicide was in rural America from say about 1900 to 1940. Makes for some interesting meditation. Pointlessness must always be a temptation for the human mind. Any reaction? Gene

As someone who has just begun to “grow my own” in the last couple of years, my first experience with death with regard to food came last summer when I went set-netting for salmon. Once the net gets hauled in and all the fish picked out of it, the cleaning process begins. For all that these fish looked dead to me, removing the heads made if very clear that most of them were not. It was an odd and sad feeling but my respect for salmon with the need to keep their environment clean and available to them grew enormously. After we finished cleaning there on the beach, all the heads, entrails and other pieces was returned to the ocean where all manner of other fish and gulls made short work of it. There you go; the cycle of life right in front of me.

I’d been rather philosophical about death prior to my set-netting experience but now I guess I fall into the category of most rural people. Everything is born, it lives and it dies. People are involved in the cycle only by improving the quality of birth, life and death, not only for the animals that will become food but also for themselves and other people. In addition to being more settled about death, I’d postulate that farmers and hunters also care more about the welfare of the animals that provide them food whether in the form of eggs, milk, honey or meat. They want their food to have a face.

I may not be quite ready for slaughtering chickens (I have to get some first!) but I’ll be ready when the time comes. Yes, Gene, I agree there is an underlying sadness that comes with farming but it is balanced by the joy at the beginning of the cycle. Who can resist baby lambs or chicks? Sooo cuuuuuute…

Kerri in AK

Thanks Dennis.
I think he was no more or less wise than most of the people of his generation.

– I guess I’d augment that philosophy a bit – man is a tabula rasa with a natural attraction to “creation” – whether you call that God, nature, art or whatever. A person can grow in wisdom and spirit without achieving “success” as society sees it. I’ve met quite a few homeless people with a more mature spiritual outlook than I’ve found in most business executives. It’s difficult for people today to have a simple, natural view of things because there are so many external distractions and temptations. I think the bright side of that is that we now have the opportunity to choose to create a better world, rather than that being our only option.

Mr. Logsdon, I really loved your “The Man Who Created Paradise.” I think it’s a perfect example of how going “back to the land” today is not a regression or a limitation, but an act of redemption. Sorry for the thread drift 🙂

To Kyle –

Your last sentence (about your grandfather)”he died happy because he realized there’s nothing to accomplish other than a good harvest, a good hunt, a good meal”. Thank you for that! It summarizes nicely my own philosophy, but for which I hadn’t found a concise way of expressing it. I would like to have known your grandfather. He sounds like a very wise man.

Good point……

To your central point, growing food changed the way I look at pretty much everything. Even though you have highs and lows you can’t control, you can directly observe the effects of your actions and attitude in the span of a year rather than a lifetime, and you can take what you’ve learned and apply it next time around. It’s a bit like karma in fast-forward.

I don’t know if it’s just being desensitized to the physical act of death that makes a food grower less scared, but the knowledge that death completes the life cycle. It makes you want to keep learning and evolving toward some logical conclusion.

I had a friend who recently hung herself (30 years old). I think it was a matter of not understanding what “the point” was, not having any direction and not having anything to look forward to. I think this is an extreme example of the general anxiety you’re talking about.

I compare this to my grandfather’s death. He was a farmer and hunter, didn’t “accomplish” anything in particular, but he died happy because he realized there’s nothing to accomplish other than a good harvest, a good hunt, a good meal, etc.

One thing I am forever grateful for. I have wonderful readers. They can agree or disagree with me thoughtfully and intelligently and make good points either way. I wish more of you would address the fear of death issue itself. I never used the word ‘vegetarian’ in the whole essay, if I recall correctly. I think there are a great many more meat eaters who worry about cow gas than vegetarians. Gene Logsdon

An interesting and provocative article.

I’m a long-time vegetarian who happens to agree with your views on meat-eating. If I had the space to raise meat, I’d eat it. But I’d rather go without than trust Smithfield and Perdue with animal welfare.

I do think there’s another dimension to your points about fear of death and paranoia. That is, the use of “environmentalism” to defend Malthusian social policies. The same people who parrot the CO2- and cow-haters are the first to agree with the idea of human “overpopulation,” which opens the door to culling “useless eaters” in the name of economic efficiency.

For instance, Obama’s healthcare plan (as currently outlined) uses the British model of QALYs to cut $600 billion in Medicare/Medicaid by creating a legal basis for denying necessary procedures and treatments where deemed not a “good investment.” (This was incidentally Hitler’s model).

What better way to coat this bitter pill than by convincing people they’ve simply outgrown the limits of nature, and that the least healthy sadly have to be eliminated for the good of the herd? There’s been a recent spate of books and programs like Thomas Friedman’s “Hot, Flat and Crowded,” not to mention incessant calls from the world’s billionaires to solve the transcendent problem of population growth.

As you know better than anyone, farming and husbandry are technological improvements to the efficiency of raw nature, and America has an unimaginable acreage of wonderful cropland being used for extremely inefficient purposes (biofuels, low-grade animal feed, etc.)

Rather than accepting our current “limits to growth”, real environmentalists could be focusing their efforts on getting animals and people back on the land, decentralizing agriculture, and building permanent prosperity through local slaughterhouses, canneries, mills, transportation, etc. This requires both effort at the grassroots and political change from the top.

There are plenty of untried ways for more of us to live and die in harmony with nature, rather than at the whims of bankers and bureaucrats.

The article started very well indeed, in true GL-style, but then turned into a boring and uninformed rant against vegetarians.

The figures for cattle and human flatulence are out there online for any interested person to discover. Essentially, a cow’s guts produce 1,000-10,000 times the greenhouse gases compared to a human’s guts. As any farmer knows, cows are ruminants – all that stuff passing through their several stomachs makes a lot of gas. Humans are made differently – as are groundhogs, rabbits, and most of the animals GL says would replace the cattle, sheep and pigs.

Absent livestock, it’s true there’d be more wild animals, each producing greenhouse gases, though overall less than cattle, sheep and pigs. But there’d also be more plants and trees, too. Those wild animals cannot live on pasture alone, after all. Nature abhors a vacuum, but nature also tends to balance things out: animals breathe in oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide, and plants vice versa. When there are more plants, we get more animals; when more animals, more plants. A fair balance.

We humans can use energy to upset this balance. We dig up dead plants from hundreds of millions of years ago, and turn them into fertiliser to boost plant production now, so we can boost livestock production, too. And the livestock take the carbon from the plants and turn it into greenhouse gases. Or we burn the fossil fuels and make the greenhouse gases. And so on.

For our health in the West, for animal welfare (see factory farms), for the environment, we need to eat not no meat, but less meat; Westerners eat over 200lbs annually on average. And we need to eat less meat for social justice; it is not really fair that we get to eat 200+lbs while people in the Third World eat 20lbs. Especially when in many cases the Third Worlders are growing that meat and exporting it to the West, as in for example Brazil exports beef to the EU – Brazilians go hungry so that Europeans can be fat.

I don’t know, Jan — I’m a vegetarian, too, but I didn’t read it the same way. I think the point is that because so many people have such a great distance from the source of their food, it becomes easier to see only one side of the problem and think that one answer will solve it, instead of understanding the need for balance — both in our view of the problem and in our responses to it.

I think a lot of vegetarians also forget that death is a part of our diet, too. I know I didn’t pay a whole lot of attention to that fact early on, but the more I raise my own food and the more I’m aware of the vast ecosystem within my small garden, the more I remember that fact. Perhaps that would have been worth pointing out, too, Gene.

Ed, you can keep your beef (I don’t hate it but I know you’ll enjoy it more), but I’ll raise you a beer and we can have a nice little CO2 emissions contest sometime. 🙂

Gene, it might be better to treat “beef haters” as outliers, to be ignored, than to give them attention.

I’m a vegetarian, but I’m open to the idea of hunting and small amounts of self-slaughtered and butchered meat. I think anyone who does not know the person who raises their meat should be a vegetarian. Ideally, I think anyone who is willing to eat meat should be willing to kill an animal to do so. This would mean a whole lot less meat being eaten!

But your article is polarizing, having moved from “fear of death” into a rant on vegetarians, as thought the biggest or only reason to not eat meat is carbon dioxide emissions.

There are lots of reasons to eat way less meat. I agree that reducing CO2 is not a very good reason, and I think most vegetarians would agree. So cut us some slack, okay? Because I’ve got to figure out what to do with the excess roosters and bucklings we caused to be brought into this world on our farm.

I always enjoy your writing, even if I disagree on where it takes you!

Sure you can borrow. Let me know if you get a beef hater to listen. I can’t. Gene

Gene, I hope you don’t mind if I borrow some of your stuff about wild animals farting, people eating beans. Otherwise I’ve run out of responses to all the foodniks and environiks who want to get rid of beef. Oh, well. So much for 2.6 million years of evolution.

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