About This Website
It's easy to see how I feel about animals when they're right next to me. But what about when they're living (if you can call it that) in a factory farm in the Midwest? How consistent is this love I so proudly profess? What does it mean to be an ethical carnivore, and is that even possible?
It's been almost two years since I first read The Omnivore's Dilemma, one year since I saw "Food Inc.," and now a few months since I finished reading Eating Animals. This trifecta has removed the veil from our food sources, to say the least. But translating what I've learned into daily decisions has been confusing and frustrating—sometimes enough to make me wish the veil was still there. I've always thought that as long as an animal had a good life and a painless, quick death, I was fine with being a link in the food chain.
But I'm finding it extremely difficult to find out the truth about the way the meat I eat is produced. By our government's regulatory standards, "humanely raised" has no definition at all. "Free range" and "grass fed" have no formal working definition. And "organic" has nothing to do with how animals are raised and slaughtered (lately, it seems to be as much about branding as anything else—just like "green").
Keeping one's eyes wide open to this stuff can be tiring and lonely. "The Carnivore's Dilemma" is my small attempt to record the journey from happy oblivion to… well, it's too soon to say where I'll wind up. Stay tuned and please let me know what you think.
I usually write for a much younger audience, on less-loaded topics. As a writer and editor of children's media, I've published more than 30 books for young people, their parents, and their teachers. Growing up in a small beach town in Connecticut, I published my first work, the mimeographed Gumdrop Gazette, at the age of eight (my reporting garnered numerous awards from my dad). I'm the former senior editor of Sesame Street Magazine and recently worked on the start-up of the new Electric Company, both of which allowed me to indulge my Peter Pan syndrome.
When I'm not at my desk fighting over the keyboard with the cats, I'm volunteering for animal-welfare organizations such as ASPCA and Best Friends, and doing animal-assisted therapy through the Delta Society (my cat Marvin and I visit residents of a nearby nursing home, spreading love and fur), and wishing every homeless cat and dog a loving home.
The most important bit of information may be that I live in Brooklyn, and am a member of the well-loved and often-mocked Park Slope Food Coop, one of the largest and oldest member owned and operated food cooperatives in the country.