Meat and the Maintenance of Masculinity

If you were fussy about my first vegetarian post, steel yourself. We’re getting meatier and feminist-er in this criticism of meat. As I’ve spent more and more time with intersectionality, I’ve learned how meat intersects with concepts of masculinity.  Every other time I say my diet, someone says, “Oh, I could never give up meat. It tastes so good.” It’s almost always man. And he doesn’t mean “it tastes so good.”

“It tastes good” is not a reason. Doughnuts taste good; do you eat those 2-3 times a day? There are so many foods and tastes in the world that are delicious. If I said “I’m vegetarian because vegetables just taste good,”it’s true. I believe there are few thing in the world better than a garden fresh heirloom tomato. But that’s not why I’m vegetarian; it’s just a lifestyle perk.

Meat is about much more than taste– that’s clearer when you realize 59% of vegetarians are women. When you look at vegans, the number jumps to 79%. Our culture uses this split as a double-edged sword. On the one hand, vegetarian/vegan diet is a diet, and diets are for women; on the other, real men eat meat. Continue reading

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