Thursday, November 20, 2008

Thanksgiving Looms

It's one week until Thanksgiving. This time next week I will be sitting at a dinner table across from my family and likely in front of a turkey and some ham. I know that some vegans refuse to eat Thanksgiving dinner with people who are eating turkey, but, for me, that goes too far. I won't eat the turkey or the ham, but if my relatives want to cook a dead bird, so be it. The family Thanksgiving table is not a time for activism or admonishment; I hope that my family likewise will respect my choices and not berate me about my eating (or other) habits.

In preparation for Thanksgiving, I found this great article from the Wall Street Journal (11/13/08); it details some fake turkey and ham options for vegans and vegetarians: "Any Way You Slice It, It's Not Turkey."

The article notes that: "About 88% of Americans eat turkey on Thanksgiving, according to the National Turkey Federation, with an estimated 46 million birds cooked for the holiday last year." Yes, that is a lot of people eating turkey and a lot of turkeys bred, raised, and killed. Rather than scream at your family and friends about their part in the mass cruelty to turkeys -- which I assume predominately is ineffective and diminishes your credibility, especially during the holiday season -- I suggest adopting a turkey that lives at a sanctuary.

My favorite sanctuary is Farm Sanctuary, which runs farms in New York and California. Farm Sanctuary's "Adopt-A-Turkey Project seeks to end the misery of commercially-raised turkeys by offering a compassionate alternative for Thanksgiving. Since 1986, Farm Sanctuary has rescued more than 1,000 turkeys . . . . Anyone can sponsor turkeys residing at [their] sanctuaries in California and New York." Sponsorship is $25 per turkey. You can choose your turkey, such as Faye (pictured right). To sponsor a turkey, click here.

I also think it's awesome that every year Farm Sanctuary holds a "Celebration for the Turkeys." All the more reason to sponsor a turkey!


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