One of my best friends is getting married! Her sister, myself and two of our other best friends are throwing her a bridal shower, and last night we met to discuss the menu. Obviously most of the people at this shindig, including the bride herself, are NOT vegan! Since I am not into forcing my beliefs on anyone, I quietly offered to make vegan spring rolls. These are always a huge hit whether you are a vegan or not, so it is a small but important effort for my cause. I am fine with the fact that there will be meat eaten at this party. That is just a fact of life at this point. People love their meat, and can not imagine a world without it. I am the crazy one in this scenario, and I own it proudly! One day I won't seem so crazy. BUT I digress...
As we were figuring out the menu, one of the other items that came up as a must have food was a lobster salad. Now let me say first that the reason I am writing this post is because I need to encourage myself to say "NO!" to the temptation to eat the lobster. Yes I make my own rules, and I can do whatever I want, but what I want to do is never eat another living creature again. Even if it is a creature that I have previously salivated over and longed for. For me, lobster is that creature. I have always loved lobster. My Grammie used to buy them live and throw them into the boiling water with no problem at all. I always had to be out of the room, because even then I knew that that something about it wasn't quite right. But at that point, being out of the room while they died was enough for me, and I was able to enjoy them once they were dead and on my plate. I tried not to think about the pain they went through to get there. However, obviously now I am in a different place, and I can't just ignore it anymore. As much as I love how they taste, and as easy as it would be to "just have a little" as one of my friends suggested to me last night, I can't in good conscious eat lobster anymore. So here I am, writing my blog to encourage myself to stay strong.
I did a little research and found out some really fascinating facts about lobsters. Lobsters carry their young for nine months, and can live to be 100 years old!! I also found an article written by author David Foster Wallace for Peta and in it he writes, "According to invertebrate zoologist Jaren G. Horsley, 'The lobster does not have an autonomic nervous system that puts it into a state of shock when it is harmed. It probably feels itself being cut. ... I think the lobster is in a great deal of pain from being cut open ... [and] feels all the pain until its nervous system is destroyed' during cooking. " That thought is horrifying to me. How can we feel good about eating a creature that is horribly tortured before it gets to our plate!? All animals feel pain! Why is this not a problem for more people?! You can read the full article by David Foster Wallace here: Lobster and Crab Article.
I also read that Rhode Island (and I would bet most New England as well) has put a limit on the amount of lobsters that can be caught by fishermen because their numbers are fast diminishing due to over fishing and disease. Ever wonder why lobsters cost so much? They are a finite resource, and we won't have them around forever at the rate we are going. You can check out the article here: Lobster Regulations Article.
As much as I love the taste of lobster, it is not worth it for me anymore. I can't just shrug it off, or pretend that I don't know what that poor thing had to go through to be on my plate. I can't make those justifications now that I know what I know. I am learning that how something tastes is not a good enough reason to eat it, especially if it is an animal who deserves to live, but has had to suffer instead. The humane treatment of ALL creatures, even the funny looking ugly ones, is what should really matter.