Caryn reviews the New York Times series called The Outlaw Ocean, specifically the last 2 articles: “‘Sea Slaves’: The Human Misery That Feeds Pets and Livestock and A Renegade Trawler”, “A Renegrade Trawler Hunted for 10,000 Miles by Vigilantes” with the brave folks at the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society doing what no one else will do, as well the Wall Street Journal article: “Palm-Oil Migrant Workers Tell of Abuses on Malaysian Plantations.”
She recommends tuning in to a Free broadcast: <em>The Secrets of Effortless Mind® Meditation: How to Eliminate Anxiety and Gain Deep Peace with Ease and covers some cool foods for hot days.
Hello, everybody. I’m Caryn Hartglass, and you are listening to It’s All About Food. And thank you for being here, thank you for joining me wherever you are and whenever you are because I know you may not be with me right in this moment, but I feel you even those who are listening in the future. What? Anyway, thank you very much for being here. It’s kind of a crazy time. So here I am in New York City, and it’s hot, hot, hot. I don’t use much air conditioning, only when it’s really torturous. I find it’s hard to get the work done and be motivated as your brain starts to steam and get a little soggy, but I’m keeping on here with all kinds of cool, light drinks and things to keep calm and stay cool.
I want to say a few things about me. Now I’ve been doing this program for over six and a half years—It’s All About Food—I can’t believe it’s been that long. Some of you may be just joining us or some have been with me all the way since the beginning, but I’m sure it’s not a surprise to you that I am a vegan. I’m a vegan. The word vegan gets thrown around in all different ways today. At least people know, for the most part, more than ever, what a vegan is. For me, I jumped into this mission and got on this path a long time ago. I was a teenager, and I had my little epiphany where I realized I didn’t want to kill animals. I didn’t want to cause, be a part of pain and suffering. There were things in my young mind that didn’t make sense to me. It didn’t make sense to me that there were people that were hungry, and I didn’t understand violence and exploitation and torture, and frankly, I still don’t understand it four decades later.
So for me, I came to this way of being, this way of living, this way of eating because I didn’t want to cause any pain and suffering. That’s why I’m a vegan. And over the years, there’s been like this triangle of reasons: there’s the ethical reason, not wanting to cause cruelty to animals; there’s the environmental reason because raising plants to feed animals to feed people is an unsustainable and environmental disaster; and then the other part, of course, is health, and there’s more science today that says we need to eat more plants, not less, although still we have not defined the ideal diet because humans are really capable of eating so many different ways, and that’s a good thing. But there is no one ideal diet, at least one that hasn’t been clinically proven by science, but what has been proven is that our diets should be based primarily on plants. Okay, good.
Now there are other things that have kind of come into the vegan picture over the years, so people often would say and maybe still today say, you care about animals; don’t you care about people? And of course we care about people. And more of the things that are going on in the news today that I want to talk about have to do with people, and it really is all connected—the way we treat animals, the way we treat nonhuman animals, the way we treat our environment, the way we treat other humans—it is all connected, and unfortunately, we’re treating everybody very poorly.
So the New York Times—have you read it? The New York Times has put out a four-part series called “The Outlaw Ocean.“ It’s a series on lawlessness on the high seas. It shows crime and violence in international waters and how they often go unpunished. It came out four days ago, and now we have all four parts to read, and I wanted to specifically talk about the last two. It’s just all a disaster, the things that are going on, but in the third article that had to do with “’Sea Slaves’: The Human Misery that Feeds Pets and Livestock“—we’ve talked on this program about how child slaves are used in the Ivory Coast to help harvest cocoa and how we recommend not consuming chocolate from areas that are harvested, from areas that use children as slaves to harvest their cocoa. People are being used in so many different areas. We talked a few years ago about here in the United States in Florida, how people were being brought in to grow tomatoes, and their life was very close to being a slave. Some of them are considered indentured servants where they leave their country, and they’re desperate, and they want to be able to make money, and they’re lured into a situation, and then the traffickers that get them tell them that they owe them money and then they’re kind of indentured, so the little money that they do make in their field has to go to who’s ever exploiting them. And it’s like endless. It’s very sad.
What the New York Times uncovered is that on the sea, there are many unfortunate men that are being forced to fish. It’s just a horrifying story, and it’s unbelievable that here we are in 2015, and we have slavery all over the world today, and it’s so unnecessary, and I just say to myself—well, number one, I can’t believe that it goes on, but it does go on, and then I think is there anything in my life that supports any of this because I don’t want that to be possible. I can’t, I don’t want to be a part of it, I don’t want to support any of it, and if I don’t know about it, I want to know about it because that’s a piece of the problem—the not knowing or the saying that you don’t know.
There are a lot of things that we buy, there are many things that we do, and we may not know how it’s connected to exploitation, slavery, violence, torture, or we may kind of know, but we don’t want to dig deep because once we know, what do we do? And that’s the thing, I think we need to do something, we need to do something fast. So the very minimum thing that we can do is not purchase products that are connected to human slavery. Well, it’s hard to know, and that’s why I’m really grateful for this particular piece by the New York Times. I hadn’t been happy with some of the things they’ve been putting out lately, but this was a phenomenal, phenomenal piece.
Okay, so get to the point Caryn. The point is that a lot of the fish that these sea slaves are getting, they actually go into pet food and livestock feed, so those who have companion animals and are feeding them fish food, you may very well be supporting this slave business, and of course those who eat animals are supporting it because livestock feed often contains fish product—fish that isn’t used to be served in restaurants, a lot of it goes into livestock feed. So if you are eating flesh—meat flesh—it’s very likely that it was fed fish flesh that was procured by human slaves. It’s all connected, and it’s all about food, and it’s horrifying to me.
The other piece of this story is—and this is kind of a happy story—is the fourth piece in this series. It just came out—“A Renegade Trawler, Hunted for 10,000 Miles by Vigilantes“—and it’s about this trawler called the Thunder, the world’s most notorious fish poacher. And basically didn’t even belong to any country anymore because nobody would give it a license to be a part of their sovereignty. But the problem was there are no government organizations that really want to go out and chase these criminals because the ocean, it’s really hard, and you could put your own lives at risk, and it’s not an easy thing to do.
So you may have heard of the environmental organization Sea Shepherd. They’ve been around since 1977, and they’ve been doing really brave and heroic things over the decades, often without getting much support from the general public or from the media. The Sea Shepherd has been working to save whales and save dolphins from bloody slaughter, and they go after these whaling ships and try and prevent them from killing animals. They had two particular ships that were going after this trawler called the Thunder, and one of them is called the Bob Barker. It’s named after Bob Barker, the entertainer, and the other one is named the Sam Simon, which is named after Sam Simon, the creator of—oh gosh, it just escaped me; c’mon, help me here—The Simpsons, there we go, oh goodness. Anyway, they’ve both, unfortunately, passed, but they left millions to the Sea Shepherd to support these ships.
The Sea Shepherd went after this trawler, and it took quite a long time, and they finally got it, and then—no one is really sure why, but the Thunder did sink in April, and the Sea Shepherd folks saved all the people that were onboard, and then they went and were prosecuted. So the good news is, there are organizations out there like the Sea Shepherd—they’re amazing; I don’t know anybody who’s as brave as these folks are, and you know what? Most of them are vegan. I don’t know if you remember, but a few years ago, we talked to Laura Dakin who was the chef on the Sea Shepherd, and—on one of the ships—and she would cook all-vegan meals. And a couple of weeks ago, too, we talked to Jeff Wirth when we were talking about the end of meat, and he talked a bit about what goes on there, too. These are amazing, heroic individuals doing what no one else will really.
But the bottom line is it’s all about food, and it’s all about fish, and it’s all about making money, so there are people that will do anything really to make a buck, and all that we can do, because it’s next to impossible to get our governments to follow up on these things—some of it is really hard to control, so I don’t want to entirely blame the governments, but you would think that maybe they could do something. We need to do something, and that means not eat fish, period, and to the best of our ability, not feed fish to our companion animals.
Now that gets kind of tricky, and I wanted to remind you that, I spoke a while ago to veterinarian Lorelei—oh goodness, I’m really, you know, I’m telling you, this is the heat, and I’m forgetting things because it’s hot, but I’m looking up her name because I want to get it right. Recent programs…and Lorelei, Lorelei, Dr. Lorelei…do you remember? Wakefield! Wake up, Caryn! Dr. Lorelei Wakefield. She’s an expert in dog and cat nutrition, and we talked a bit about feeding animals plants, and specifically dogs and cats. I think the biggest challenge is feeding cats plants. She made it sound like it is possible, but what she did recommend is this company called Ami Pet, and they make 100% vegetable-based food for dogs and cats. At the very minimum, you might try feeding your companion animals more plants rather than all plants. Just try to include more plants in their diet. It’s just like humans—we all need to include more plants in our diets. There is more and more reason to do that. So now it’s not just for our health, it’s not just for cruelty to animals, it’s not just for the environment now—it’s for human slavery. Whew. I’m getting a little worked up here. So I encourage you to read the New York Times’ four-part series on this subject.
And that’s not all. For me, this concept of veganism is about not exploiting living beings. It’s—I say it’s all about food, but it’s more than food. And I really believe it’s all connected. I chose this path because, as I said many times, I’m a big-picture person, and for me this covers the big picture. I think we can solve most of the world’s problems if we dropped the exploitation card and stopped exploiting whatever we could and started being more mindful about all of our actions in every step of our lives.
So just like this story came out with human trafficking in the fish trade, the Wall Street Journal came out with an article, and I want to pull that up. It just came out. And it’s about palm oil. This came out a couple days ago, and it’s called ”Palm-Oil Migrant Workers Tell of Abuses on Malaysian Plantations.“ Now you’ve probably heard about how the growing market for palm oil is destroying the rainforest—yes, that’s true. And for a while, I have to admit that I thought that it was a distraction because people didn’t want to focus on the destruction of rainforests because of the cattle industry for…destroying rainforests to grow soybeans in order to feed cattle or for cattle to graze, but they’re both big issues—big—and this palm-oil issue is becoming even bigger, and not only is it devastating to the environment, the Wall Street Journal has disclosed that many of the people that are being used to work on palm-oil plantations are refugees, and they’re working in horrible conditions. They have very few legal protections; they’re like slaves.
The thing that was in this article that I found—there were a few things that were very disturbing. One is there is, the roundtable on sustainable palm oil, and people have been saying that they’re not as good as they sound, but the idea behind them is growing palm oil that’s sustainable. We have another instance here, as I was mentioning before, people don’t want to know about what’s happening, because once they know about something, they have to act. So in this article, they’re talking about companies that use palm oil like Cargill in Minnesota, and they sell the palm oil to multinationals like Nestlé and Procter and Gamble, and all these representatives from these companies, they say that they don’t know about these things and that they’ll have to look into it because they weren’t aware, they’re not aware of things, and how easy is it to turn your head and be not aware. It’s easy to be not aware because they use a lot of contractors that don’t directly work for their company, so they don’t have to be aware, and that’s kind of like the loophole there. Anyway, another very sad, frustrating article, and palm oil is used in so many different things—Oreos, deodorant, lots of different products. How do we keep palm oil out of our lives?
Okay, so this is just slightly humorous, but in terms of deodorant, I make my own now, and I don’t use palm oil. I’ve been making a mixture of shea butter, coconut oil, baking soda, cornstarch, and lavender. I’ve made my first batch—I haven’t perfected the recipe, although I’m very happy with it. It’s a great product, especially in the hot summer to keep me cool and relatively calm after reading some of these crazy articles about what’s going on in the world.
I wanted to mention the—I wanted to mention, I mentioned it last week, and I have to mention it again—there’s a free one-hour webinar on July 30 called, “The Secrets of Effortless Mind Meditation: How to Eliminate Anxiety and Gain Deep Peace with Ease.” And it’s really essential—I know it is for me—to gain deep peace with all of the things that are going on in the world today. Sometimes meditation is the only thing that can get you through. So if you are dabbling with meditation or if you’re not familiar with it at all, this is a great opportunity—it’s free—to find out more about it. And if you go to my website, www.responsibleeatingandliving.com, and look on the right-hand side, you can click on the link to register, claim your spot, for this moment.
Let’s see. Before we take a little break, I want to talk about food. Nice food. Happy food. I’m really grateful to be able to have nutritious, delicious food, and I wish that for everyone, I really do. In the heat right now, I’m finding that I’m not very hungry, so I just kind of graze along the day, and one of the key things of course is to hydrate, and it brought me back to a time when I was working for an Israeli company, actually thirty years ago, I can’t believe it’s been that long, but yes, it has. Everybody was drinking these diluted drinks—it was like diluted orange juice, water with a splash of orange juice. And they would have these coolers with them, and at first, I thought, eww, this is diluted, but now I find it really refreshing. To start with, I don’t really like drinking orange juice, period, because it upsets my stomach, and it’s too sugary, but just a little splash in water, I find it’s really refreshing, really delightful. I made another refreshing drink with hibiscus. I have a friend who lives in Costa Rica, and we’ve harvested hibiscus petals at her property, and she bags them and gives them to people, and I have a lovely bag Costa Rican-grown hibiscus, and I like to make tea with that and then chill it and add some fresh lime juice and orange juice to that. It’s really a lovely treat. Like a little cocktail, only it’s better—it’s good for you, and it’s refreshing. The recipe is at www.responsibleeatingandliving.com.
So as I’m going through this warm weather, and I’m not really hungry, I’ve been eating super, super simple, and I’ve been finding it really satisfying. You can see all of that in my What Vegans Eat blog. It may seem boring to some people because I’m not coming up with all kinds of fun recipes and food combinations. I’m eating not necessarily mono-meals, but I’m eating plain food. So for example, I had a breakfast of sliced tomatoes and steamed cauliflower. I had a little of our Little Seed Caesar Dressing that I could dip it with, but it was simple and really lovely. Later in the day for a dessert, I had a bowl of frozen blueberries. Just pop them in your mouth. They’re cool, crunchy, and sweet, and what a lovely thing to have on a hot day. And there’s that.
I’ve got a couple of new recipes I will be adding to the site. I just had, I just made a fabulous creamy carrot soup today, and I actually ate it cold. It’s good hot or cold, but I’ve been eating a lot of food cold because I’m hot. But it’s the simplest thing—carrots and onions, cashews, and Herbes de Provence, the lovely collection of herbs. How do you say herbs? Do you say herbs [with an h], herbs [silent h], or herbes [French pronunciation]? Anyway, Herbes de Provence is a collection of basil, thyme, marjoram, oregano, lavender—depends on where you get it from. It’s a nice little mix of lovely, lovely south of France flavors, and it goes really, really well in this soup. I haven’t posted that yet, but I will probably in a day or two, so you might find that at www.responsibleeatingandliving.com. How’s that sound?
Okay. I’m going to take a little break, and then we’re going to be back to talk to Christy Morgan about all kinds of fitness.
Transcribed by Kristy McCoy 11/14/2015