Since the American Revolutionary War, over 1.3 million U.S. soldiers have died in the name of freedom. Memorial Day honors the ultimate sacrifice of these men and women. As Americans gather around barbecues across the country, it's a fine time to also remember the forced sacrifice of the billions of non-human animals killed every year in the U.S -- in the name of something to eat.
About 7 billion hot dogs will be eaten throughout the U.S. today, at the rate of over 800 hot dogs consumed every second.
"This Memorial Day, while we're celebrating our freedom -- and paying tribute to the men and women who died while fighting for our freedom -- let's also take a moment to think about all the animals who are not free, and consider what we can do to help them," writes Heather Moore on Care2.com. "From factory farms to zoos, aquariums, and circuses to puppy mills and pet stores, countless animals are confined in deplorable conditions; exploited, abused, and even killed to satisfy many American's way of life."
"To me, it seems more fitting to hold a vegetarian cookout in commemoration of all the animals who suffer and die in slaughterhouses," Moore writes. "Each year in the U.S., about 10 billion cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys, and other animals are raised and killed for food. They are made of flesh, bone, and blood, just as you and I are. They yearn to be with their loved ones, feel the warmth of the sun, breathe fresh air, and feel grass beneath their feet. Yet, before they are killed, they're packed in filthy, dark cages, crates, warehouses, or sheds. They are debeaked, castrated, branded, or tortured in a variety of other ways. All to satisfy people's taste for flesh."
- Download a free vegetarian starter kit from FARM (Farm Animal Rights Movement)
- Check out Meatout
- Read about the HBO documentary "Death on a Factory Farm"
- Choose a pork substitute for your recipe
- Read PETA's "The Hidden Life of Pigs"
- Sign a PETA letter urging Unilever to stop pig abuse
- Read the Yale College Vegetarian Society's "Top 10 Reasons to Become Vegetarian"
- Banned in 150 Countries, But Approved in the U.S. (May 20, 2010)
- Plato's Plate (April 8, 2010)
- The Real Price of Meat (March 19, 2010)
- Ohioans Seek Humane Treatment of Farm Animals (February 3, 2010)
- The Castrato Oinks (January 12, 2010)
- These Little Piggies Didn't Go to Market (May 2, 2009)
- Animal Farm (April 10, 2009)
- The Gloomy Dean (January 30, 2009)
- Eat Healthy and Save the World, Simultaneously (January 23, 2009)
- California Passes Landmark Anti-Cruelty Act (November 7, 2008)
- If We Really Are What We Eat, Most of Us Are A Bit Disturbing (October 17, 2008)
- Patrick Martins: About a Bird (November 20, 2009)