Preaching to the choir
Mark doesn't generally read
along with our book clubs because I tell him the
highlights of every text over the dinner table. As I related Salatin's
pointers from this week's selection, Mark replied, "So, he's a
choir preacher, right?"
I hadn't thought of Joel
Salatin that way (although his scattered chapters do feel a bit like
daily sermons), but in retrospect, I think Mark might be right.
For example, take the essay "No Compost, No Digestion", the thesis of
which is that real food will rot if left on the counter for a couple of
days, while items souped up with preservatives are no better for our
digestive systems than they are for the air-borne microorganisms that
turned them down. If you're not already sold on the idea that
diet soda and ultra-processed food is bad for you, would Salatin's
chapter open your eyes in any way?
On the other hand, can we
ever do anything other than preach to the choir? I'm curious to
hear how you all (my choir, who I assume probably agrees with most of
my rants or you wouldn't stick around) came around to this point of
view. Was it childhood indoctrination informed by reading and
experimentation (my answer), or did you stumble upon the ideas of
ecological food production as an adult?
If I were Salatin's
adviser, I think I'd recommend that his next book take an entirely
different tack if he really wants to change the world. Include
lots of glossy photos of happy pastured pigs, chickens, and cows and
write a children's picture book with just the facts. Or hire a
publicity firm as Salatin reported one college campus did to train its
students to enjoy chewing pastured meat.
Meanwhile, I'll keep
reading his daily devotionals. Tune in next Wednesday to discuss
chapters ten through thirteen (up through "Grasping for Water"), and
don't forget to read over the interesting
comments on the first week's selection if you haven't already.
Several friends have told me
has simplified their Christmas shopping. Maybe you have someone
on your list who would enjoy a copy as well?
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