I encourage you to tune in to HBO on March 16 to watch DEATH ON A FACTORY FARM - and spread the word to your family and friends as well. It’s a great opportunity for the general public to see what happens on factory farms throughout the nation. You can also check out the Humane Farming Association.
Check out the film if you have HBO, or find someone that does.
When I bring up something like this, I fear some might want to roll their eyes, somehow communicating that I sound like a liberal who has lost all touch with his agrarian roots. For what it's worth, I'm not a vegetarian. I do eat meat. However, I am ultimately convinced not only that we eat too much meat (see here), but also I am convinced that how we treat (and even kill and eat) animals is a significant moral issue insofar as how one interacts with what our faith has taught us to call creation ultimately impacts both our own humanity and whether we are honoring our Creator. Further, I am convinced that factory farming is a significant labor issue. Asking others to interact with parts of creation in a manner that asks them to casually disregard the destruction of that creation, can only have a detrimental impact on that person. This cannot be overlooked if we are to care for our neighbor. As Christians, the shared portion of our Scriptures begin with God's creation and pronouncement that God's creation was good. The second creation account in the second chapter of the book of Genesis portrays God in agrarian terms, planting, irrigating, and tending a garden. Humanity is brought into this action of tending, assuming both the role of dominion (as seen in chapter one) and caretaker. Rule and responsibility, humanity cannot have one without the other. Even if we assume that eating animals will be part of our lives, how we care for these animals, how we ask farm workers to interact with them, and how land is potentially denigrated by the factory farming of animals are all moral concerns. Christians cannot merely chuckle and say they taste good.
Yes, I'm asking you to watch television tonight...