If you’ve lately been thinking about becoming a vegetarian, today might be just the day to make the switch. It’s World Vegetarian Day! In case you need just a bit more reason to give up bacon and steak, we brought back Stefany Anne Golberg’s piece on brutal vegetarianism.

I offer an outline for an Eating Animals sequel entitled A 21st Century, Balls-out Decadent Explosion of Naughty Vegetarian Food Exploration Appealing to Degenerates, or for short VEGETABALLS. It will be written by an intrepid vegetable adventurer who wears a cabbage hat and lamé hotpants, a postmodern-molecular-gastronomist-Shackleton of beans who couldn’t care less about tradition and “the earth.” VEGETABALLS  is for a vegetarianism of chocolate, vodka, fries, and habanero sauce that shows how you can be a selfish drunk fat slob and still do your part to limit the unnecessary suffering of animals. •

Read It: A Modest Proposal by Stefany Anne Golberg

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Eating Animals reminds us that vegetarianism is a diet of intellectuals. Which is to say, it is eating intellectualized. Vegetarian thinking thrashes against itself, rattling between intention and action, between “animal nature” and “human nature,” reason and desire. Vegetarians can seldom just eat. They justify, apologize, rail, denounce, weep, cajole, entice. At the end of Eating Animals, in the closest we get to a recipe, Foer describes the menu for the no-turkey Thanksgiving of his dreams: “…sweet potato casserole, homemade rolls, green beans with almonds, cranberry concoctions, yams…” As vegetarians intellectualize, they start to believe that people will find rolls and casserole so inspiring as to turn their backs on Thanksgiving turkey.

“Let the stoics say what they please,” wrote Emerson, “we do not eat for the good of living, but because the meat is savory and the appetite is keen.” I agree with Emerson here, as would Foer. People… More…

“Is it not a reproach that man is a carnivorous animal? True, he can and does live, in a great measure, by preying on other animals; but this is a miserable way — as anyone who will go to snaring rabbits, or slaughtering lambs, may learn…Whatever my own practice may be, I have no doubt that it is a part of the destiny of the human race, in its gradual improvement, to leave off eating animals….” — Henry David Thoreau, Walden

In 1845, Henry David Thoreau set off on a lone journey into the woodlands owned by his friend Ralph Waldo Emerson. He wanted to know if living more simply, in closer proximity to nature, would make him a better person, and if being a better, simpler person was the path to creating a better society. Walden is a unique and pioneering work in civil disobedience. But Thoreau’s two years… More…