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On Why I Pick on The Left . . . and Cookies

Sometimes I get comments that make me realize I wasn't clear about a fundamental point, or I assume everyone remembers other posts or has even been to Animal Person before. That hit me with a comment by Hoofenhoffer regarding "Steve Best on The Left's Ignorance of Cognitive Ethology."

Hoffenhoffer writes: "For starters, I don't really get his gripe with 'Leftists' in particular. Why are Leftists to shoulder the blame for the exploitation of animals simply because of their tardiness in arriving on the animal rights scene? Too many people are pointing fingers at the wrong folks these days."

I have the same gripe Best has with Leftists, hence my affection for this piece. And though I don't think they should "shoulder the blame," I do think that because their ethos has always been one of championing the downtrodden, the exploited and the voiceless, and pointing out how the system is set up to most benefit those few who are in power, animals would be a natural fit as a major cause for them. But they apparently don't think animals are important enough to stand up for, as they're not part of the platform of the average Leftist.

And I think they should be.

I think that it's odd, for instance, that someone so ensconced in human rights does not notice the parallel when she grabs her grilled chicken caesar salad for lunch. It smacks of compartmentalizing, or perhaps just plain denial. And Leftists are supposed to be the people who do notice where, how and why various kinds of oppression and exploitation cross paths. They're supposed to be the people who have figured out that the entire system is rigged against the weak and less wealthy. And those unable to speak for themselves.

I also liked Best's article because, though we all may have read Bekoff (and I'll write about Wild Justice soon!) and de Waal, I don't think the average person has. So while Hoofenhoffer may have found that part yawn-inducing, I think that because the writing isn't over-the-top, and because it quickly reminds us of (and dispenses with) arguments of human exceptionalism, it's a great piece for someone who is not Hoffenhoffer. For instance, I'm circulating it to some friends who are Leftists who give me the same tired reasons (excuses) for continuing to use animals.

As for cookies, well, I am at the end of week one of gluten-reduced week, and my two favorite parts were, of course, desserts. Brownie bites by Babycakes (but with date sugar and agave nectar instead of granulated sugar) . . .


And here are "Gluten-Be-Gone" Chocolate Chip cookies from Dreena Burton's "Eat, Drink & Be Vegan."


Have a great day!

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One Comment Post a comment
  1. Ken #

    I've told my politically left nonvegan parents that I got my values from them, but that I apply them more broadly.

    June 6, 2009

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