Human Health, Animal Rights, and Ecology
Volume I, No. 1, June 1990
I am happy to announce the birth of a new and long overdue vegetarian organization. A vegetarian society in Honolulu has been a dream for years, but somehow it never got past the fantasy stage until now. Perhaps Polynesian Paralysis had taken its toll without my knowledge. It was so easy to kick back with a cold guava juice, enjoy the sun and the sea, and let time go by.
But last summer, feeling a slight touch of Rock Fever (that other well-known disease of island living), Jerry Smith and I packed up and flew to Arcata, California for the annual convention of the American Vegan Society. There, enlivened by crisp, cool air, pine trees and stimulating seminars, we found the impetus and the information we needed to bring this organization into being. Our first meeting on May 8th was a fun introduction to new friends. Vegetarians we had never met came crawling out of the woodwork! (Am I getting them confused with the termites?) We want to recognize some of this newly discovered native talent, so each of our monthly meetings will feature a local vegetarian as the speaker. Over the next year, we hope to enjoy presentations by nationally known vegetarians as well. Our special May 16th meeting was a great sample of things to come, as we were privileged to have Dr. Michael Klaper speak to us about his work with EarthSave.
Just as these speakers stimulate us and open our minds to new ideas so do we plan to challenge and educate the Hawaiian public. We know there are many overweight, sick, and exhausted people here who could function better on a vegetarian diet. There are people who are unaware of the suffering which animals endure before ending up on the dinner table. There are people who want to know what they can do as individuals to help reverse the degradation of our environment. We want to share our knowledge about theses topics with the media, schools, and other institutions, as well as by the examples we set on a personal level. We welcome your ideas and activism. Your dues money will be used directly by the Society to keep us functioning and in the public eye. We need all of you and want your support over the years to come. Working together we can improve the quality of life for humans and non-human animals on this planet.
SUMMER 1990 CALENDAR OF ACTIVITIES
Sunday, June 3rd:
Meet at Country life restaurant 6:00PM for a casual dinner. No reservations. This is a good opportunity to meet and socialize with other vegetarians. Ten percent discount for Vegetarian Society members. 421 Nahua St. in Waikiki between Kuhio and Ala Wai Blvd. Parking at Outrigger West with partial refund on leaving.
Tuesday, June 12th:
Monthly meeting of the Society. 7:00PM at Makiki Park basement meeting room 1527 Keeamoku. Bill Harris MD, an emergency physician and forty year vegetarian presents an illustrated lecture on "Diet and Evolution". Social afterwards.
Wednesday, July 14th:
Celebrate Independence Day with a vegetarian picnic. Tofu dogs, anyone? From 12:00 noon at the beach across from Kapiolani Park just Ewa of the NewOtani Hotel.
Tuesday, July 10th:
Monthly meeting of the Society. 7:00PM at the Makiki Park meeting room. "From Cancer to the Ironman" by Ruth Heidrich, co-host (with Dr. Terry Shintani) of the KGU radio program, "Nutrition and You". She coaches three sports, holds numerous state and national records in triathlon and distance running, and counsels weight control, nutrition, and "stop smoking" strategies.
Tuesday, August 14th:
Monthly meeting of the Society. 7:00PM at the Makiki Park meeting room. Cathy Goeggel of Animal Rights Hawaii presents "The Animals's Film" the full length documentary with commentary by Julie Christie. Social afterwards.
Sunday August 26th:
Vegetarian potluck dinner, location to be determined, suggestions welcomed. No flesh, fish, or fowl, please. Many members are vegans and use no eggs, dairy, or honey either. Details: 395-1499
"Care-A-Van for the Animals". Hawaii's part in the Washington, DC: "March for the Animals". Mobile non-violent demonstration starts from Kapiolani Park Bandstand 9:00AM (Sunday). 941-5799.
International Vegan Festival in Holland. Write: Dutch Vegan Society, PO Box 1087, 6801 Arnhem, The Netherlands.
Vegetarian Summerfest at Geneseo, New York, in the beautiful Finger Lakes area. Write: North American Vegetarian Society, PO Box 72, Dolgeville, NY 13329. Ph.(518) 568-7970.
Every Monday night 7:00PM-8:00PM, KGU radio (AM 76) presents "Nutrition and You", hosted by Dr. Terry Shintani and Ruth Heidrich. Events of the Vegetarian Society will be announced on this program.
Country Life Restaurant
421 Nahua St. (Waikiki)
Hours: Sun-Fri 11:00AM-2:30PM
Closed Fri and Sat night.
Each quarter we will review a restaurant which has acceptable meals for vegetarians. Country Life is strictly vegetarian. They always have one soup, a good salad, and several entrees. There are interesting sandwich spreads and a variety of desserts. The food contains no eggs or dairy products, but the desserts often contain honey. We are always fascinated by the creative use of soy products to imitate dairy items. Try the "cottage cheese" or the baked potatoes with soy sour cream!
The service is buffet-style and you pay for your meal by its weight. The atmosphere is clean and attractive and Bill Ridley, the manager, is usually available to make sure customers are satisfied.
ETHICS AND ACADEME'
Singer, Peter. Animal Liberation. Avon Books. New York, 1975. ISBN: 0-380-01782
Regan, Tom. The Case for Animal Rights. University of California Press. Berkeley 1983. ISBN: 0-520-05640-1.
Descartes thought they were machines, Aristotle said they existed only to serve the purposes of humans, Thomas Aquinas said all animals are for man, and my own philosophy professor thought the subject was declasse'. Bentham, Shaw, Kingsford, Tolstoy, and many others had serious objections to the cruelties imposed by man on other animals but the academic philosophers stonewalled it. The objective was to hold 'em off at the pass or at least stop the debate before it got to the dinner table.
In 1975 a young PhD from Australia, Peter Singer, became the first credentialed philosopher in recent times directing his attention to the plight of animals sharing Earth with the best of beasts. Singer extended the concepts of Black Liberation and Women's Lib and showed that if such ideas applied to humans, then they applied to animals as well. Animal Liberation is a landmark. It's also a fairly easy read since Singer uses little technical jargon and sprinkles in some practical dietary advice.
In 1983 another academic published The Case for Animal Rights. It's not an easy read and it's sprinkled with words like parsimony, hedonistic utilitarianism, and contractarianism. Nevertheless it's a book with clout. It's written in the academic's own language and they'll either have to deal with it or 'fess up that they were only kidding. Tom Regan argues the fine points of "moral agents", creatures like humans who can bring impartial moral principles to bear on the question of what morally ought to be done, and "moral patients", animals, infants, young children, and the mentally deranged who lack the capacity for moral abstraction. Regan demonstrates that if human rights exist, so then do animal rights.
Philosophers of the past constructed a monstrous fabric of rationalization to excuse our sorry treatment of animals. Here are two books which document the moral evasions and answer them in kind.
-Bill Harris, M.D.
TOFU-FIRM ( 20 oz ) 730.0 GM
CUCUMBER-RAW (1) 200.0 GM
LEMON JUICE (3 Tbsp) 80.0 GM
MUSTARD-DIJON(1/2 tsp) 8.0 GM
GARLIC-RAW (1 clove) 4.0 GM
GINGER ROOT (1 slice) 1.0 GM
OREGANO (1/2 tsp) 1.0 GM
DILL WEED (1/2 tsp) 1.0 GM
Wash and chop the cucumber, puree all ingredients (tofu last) in a blender. Vinegar can replace lemon juice and mustard is optional, as are the spices.< /P>This makes a good salad dressing or potato topping.
Some of the nutrients are shown above with the nutrient index for a woman age 23-50. (e.g. this recipe contains 4.7X the protein and 3.5X the calcium needed per Calorie in the overall diet.)
"We tend to scoff at the vegetarians, call them the nuts among the berries, but the fact is they're doing much better than we are".
-William Castelli M.D. (Director of the federal government's Framingham Heart Study in Massachussetts)