In this age of enlightenment, even the most minority view has to be taken on board and ‘rights’ are very easily arrived at. It is therefore about time that the biased, prejudiced, narrow-minded group have somebody to represent them.

This column is a platform for the much maligned bigots: just call us the up-trodden – as against the down-trodden. We are entitled (the most used and abused word in Ireland) to have an ignorant, biased say about whatever we like … or don’t like.

Let’s reveal the type I am here: When I was a drinker I had no time for those who didn’t drink. That some of these non-drinkers changed into nice guys when I sobered up is totally irrelevant.

Right now, as a non-gay man, I firmly believe that gays are over-represented on RTE and in the media, No doubt, if I ever go gay, I will change my mind … same as with the drink. Do you see where this is going? No? …. Well actually, I’m not too sure myself – but I get paid to fill this space – so suck it up!

I don’t trust vegetarians, although I was once a good friend with one – which was carrying friendship a bit too far. The man who never felt the pleasure of a steak-knife in his hand at a BBQ is not a fit man to make crucial decisions on anything.

Some non-meat eaters are not too hard to be around, because they just keep their defects to themselves and eat their greens and beans without commentary. Other veggies wait for the slightest opportunity to adopt a moral superior arrogance as they pontificate about the rights of the fowl and the fishes. Once again I quote, ‘Confucius say people who like animals too much like people too little.’

All vegetarians are not the same. There are total vegetarians who exclude all kinds of meat, as well as animal-based products, such as milk, butter and eggs. Lacto-vegetarians will exclude the meat, but partake of milk and milk products: Then we have the Lacto-ova- vegetarians who will chance the egg as well as the milk products.

They are all wrong – although even in the throes of our bias, we give the others the right to eat what they like. Remember though, that half the population of the world has little or nothing of any sort of food to eat.

Archaeological evidence shows that eating meat has been an essential part of human evolution for two million years. Most of the earth’s surface is not suitable for growing grain, fruit or vegetables that humans can eat, but nearly everywhere the local habitat sustains animal life. A lot of middling land is only good for the rough grazing of cattle, sheep, goats and pigs.

“Tell me about it…I’m a vegetarian!”

Eating meat is not cruelty to animals. The big fish eats the little fish and I eat the big fish. The chicken drags the worm slowly out of the soil and eats it. I eat the chicken – if the fox doesn’t get it first and subject it to a horrible death.

Every organism on earth dies or is killed at some point so that other organisms can live. This applies to plants as well – and what have vegetarians to say to those researchers who claim that plants feel fear?

Without wishing to put the boot any further into vegetarians … ah OK, I will so!

The first bit of bad news for the veggies is that they don’t live any longer than the rest of us; but why would they want to, I hear the butchers ask. While still alive, their body is generally lacking iron, calcium, zinc, vitamins D and B12, riboflavin and very often protein as well.

Unless our committed vegetarian stuffs his mouth with vitamin pills, he might not even live as long as the rest of us; could be miserable – and will never experience the pleasure of picking the last bit of meat off a T-bone.

So, we in the narrow-minded, biased, uninformed, prejudiced and nasty wing of the human race agree that it is OK for our vegetarian to munch away on his lettuce leaf, as long as it’s OK for me to tease my palate with the crispy bits of the leg of the well fed and well cared for Easter lamb which gives me its leg.

Oh dear … Ok so! I’m told that I have to declare my interest in this topic! This article is not an unbiased report. I breed pedigree Dexter Cattle for their beef! Now, the editor wants to hear the vegetarian side of the debate …?

Don’t Forget

We usually see things, not as they are, but as we are.

Bernie Comaskey Books