I’ve two children that I don’t deserve. Really. Besides being my children, I can say that they are good people. And that fills me with pride, satisfaction and fear. Because I’m a person with a special predilection for good people. I love to laugh, play video games, watch TV, go for a walk or play sports with good people that I usually call son, friend or family. Author’s Note: Well, there are many times that family is like a lottery, so let’s leave it as acquaintances. As a counterpart, all that love and kindness comes with an important burden of protection instinct. What father has not felt an overwhelming protection wave at the very moment of his son’s birth? And that’s where the problems begin.
Children, those modern age little dictators, are addictive in nature. Until unsuspected limits. Among the many of their vital needs, we find fast food consumption. Fast food chains like McDonalds, Burger King, Pollo Campero and others know it perfectly. A long time ago I saw several reports that indicated them as the greatest researchers of Neuromarketing today. I was amazed how these and other firms used techniques based on our basic senses (a scent, an image …) to buy impulsively, overcoming the rational brain and directly attack our reptilian brain, the one that makes us act by instinct. While we’re being attacked by those complex stimuli, our children have been bought immediately with the toy. In this sense, a study mentioned in these reports stated that 95% of us enter these chains simply for that reason.
Well, as it couldn’t be otherwise, during my children childhood the family visited religiously these kinds of restaurants. Until relatively recently. The reason? Let me explain it to you below.
There’s a documentary film that surely many of you will know. It’s called “Before the flood.” It’s a film that speaks about something very evident for majority and inconceivable for a few: climate change, its reasons and its consequences. Much of the film deals with the devastating effects of this change, which are many. Rising temperatures, Polar ice melting, destruction of entire marine ecosystems such as coral reefs, cities trapped by pollution, deforestation, flooding or the disappearance of submerged land under rising sea levels. Are you telling me that my children will not be able to know the snow? That they will be obliged to take precautions just to go out for a walk in their cities? Ups. My levels of protection instinct soar …
But unfortunately, this film also talks about the reasons why we are coming to this stage. Various direct messages and accusing fingers mingle with Leonardo Di Caprio’s eye drops to the camera. It’s outrageous to see how various economic lobbies try to silence the reality or as Al Gore said a few years ago “An uncomfortable truth.” At this point my levels of anger are very high…
But among all of them I especially shock one: The food industry. This industry needs to produce more food at a lower cost. And, to reach their goals, they don’t hesitate to use less healthy products even if it means to destroy the planet. Thus, large fast food corporations need to ensure their burgers and chips supply to the first world. And to do that, they need palm oil and beef. Huge amounts of both. This causes many people, eager for these corporations’ hot dollars, to launch to both products massive production despite the fact that in both cases they’re accelerating climate change, either clearing rainforests to plant palm, or generating thousands of new methane Emitters into the atmosphere. Author’s note: If you want to know more about this, “Cowspiracy” is your film…
On the other hand, the result of animal agriculture, included cattle ranch, and intensive agriculture is deriving in a drastic reduction of the nutritious quality of what we eat. Recently I went to a Masterclass about organic farming given by María Dolores Raigón, Professor at the UPV. She explained in a simple and direct way how those products that are destroying our planet, are also doing indirectly the same with us. The potentially toxic substances increase and nutrient density progressive reduction of most of the products marketed by large fast food chains and supermarkets, is nowadays very evident. Evident and dangerous for the health of our children. And if that is not enough, every year a third of the food produced in a world with 2,000 million overweight and 2,000 million undernourished people, is thrown or spoiled.
Are we all gone nuts?
No. It simply happens that our society is based on capitalism, which is applied relentlessly in most places in the known world. But the most intelligent and modern thinkers know already that this model doesn’t have much left. Among them, I recommend everybody to read everything Jeremy Rifkin writes. What this man tells us makes a lot of sense: Technological advances are making and will make marginal cost, the basis for capitalism, around zero. A model based on collaboration will then be erected where buying and selling will no longer make sense. How long will this process of change take? We do not know for sure, but we do know that it will come. May the people who now silence the climate change want or not.
Recapping. We’re destroying the planet and the future of our children because a few can deceive many weak minds and thus earn a lot of money to spend it in whatever they want and control what they want, even our minds.
No. I’m not one of those who has been attacked by the “vegan virus” as some people call it. I’m more of those who are crying tears to a good sirloin. But I‘ve finally understood that this sirloin is not compatible with the desire that my children may someday play in the snow with my grandchildren just as I have. The four hard benefits today are the absence of tomorrow’s beauty for our children. Or as one might say more rhetorically, our model is not sustainable.
Can we afford that in the age of technology?
I don’t think so. In the age of machine learning and IoT, the Internet of things, it would be possible to come up with a fantastic algorithm that would balance the food supply and demand for entire world. There would be only one unpredictable parameter in the equation: the will of the human being to understand that eating healthy and varied is not at odds with maintaining an equally healthy planet. And it would only be necessary to think beyond oneself and respond NO to the son who insistently asks him to go to the fast food chain.