Excerpts in Parenting

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Poop PlanetFlo and I were walking around the neighborhood the other evening, and she asked me why everyone isn't vegetarian. The question kind of took me off guard, as I was walking at a good pace, pondering the housework I needed to get done when we got back. So, I explained to her, as I have before, that not everyone makes the same choices, and it's important to be respectful of other people's choices. We got talking about farming, and how most of the meat and dairy available these days come from factory farming, where animals literally never see the light of day and don't lead very pleasant lives before their often even more unpleasant demise. I always try to keep these types of discussions with her age appropriate and not too daunting, but she was very inquisitive that evening, so we talked about how factory farming is not good for the animals or the environment. I told her that we (this country) eat so much meat and dairy, that there has to be a whole lot of cows to provide for that demand. All those cows poop a lot, and all that poop pollutes our water and our air quality, and if we used that land to grow crops, we could feed a lot more people and have less of an impact on the earth. She was quiet for awhile, then said, "Mom, I think I know how we can help the planet, even if everyone won't eat vegetarian. We can ask the aliens to come and take all the poop up into space and put it on the Poop Planet." I couldn't help but laugh, and I think she genuinely feels she's come up with a good solution to the problem. Ah, my little environmentalist!

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