The Compost Pile or Yesterday's News or VSET Archives pg. 2

Composted Page 2 3

The Vegetarian Village

Going Vegetarian: The Christian Thing to Do There are many diverse reasons for going vegetarian: compassion, environmental concerns, enlightened self-interest or religious conviction. Ellisa Cooper, a University of Tennessee student, a member of the START environmental group there, and a Christian, explains her choice from a Christian perpective: "...evangelists who scream at you and tell you you are going to hell if you do not accept Jesus as your Savior (etc..) probably mean well and want you to seek a relationship with God ...but their method isn't the best way to reach people.  Spreading the word about vegetarianism is very similar; though it is a black and white issue, I realize people would simply just not listen if I begged them to stop eating meat. So I decided to make a website where Christians and non-Christians can view my silent plea." Elissa does not pretend to any special wisdom, but she welcomes letters and questions from those who are weighing the merits of vegetarianism. Find other faith-based vegetarian groups on our links page. You may also find the Vegan 2000 page Religious Reasons for Vegetarianism of interest.

Were the First Christians Vegetarians? Yes, or so this site on Christian Philosophy from the Universal Life movement maintains. Based on texts from the Bible and from contemporary writings of the Apostles and early church leaders.

Isn't it Time Knoxville had a Real Vegetarian Restaurant? A recent visit to the Laughing Seed Restaurant made me envious of the residents of Asheville, NC (they also have a progressive radio station in their little Utopia). The food is some of the best I've ever eaten; I suspect many of the patrons are scarcely aware they are eating vegetarian food, which might help make a few converts. It is quite popular; reservations are advisable there. Knoxville's first vegetarian restaurant was the Vegetarian Cafeteria way back in the 20's. In the 70's Knoxville had three veggie eateries (Nature's Pantry, Jojo's Getback Café, and the snack bar at the Seventh Day Adventists' health food store). Now, though there are several restaurants that offer fine vegetarian fare (see our Restaraunt Guide; most offer a discount to VSET members), there are none that specializes in vegetarian dishes. If Asheville, with a third of our population, can support two, surely we can manage one. Some members of VSET are so hungry for a restaurant we can call our own that they have vowed they would bus tables for free to make it happen.

Here's your chance to put your money where your eager mouth is: Norris Dryer, popular radio personality and Green Party candidate for City Council, together with some associates, is considering a combo veggie restaurant and coffee house, possibly in the present Cup-a-Joe's location. If you would patronize such an establishment, let him know at <> Also, give him a little feedback as to the type of restaurant you'd like to see: elegant and haute cuisine like Laughing Seed or laid back and casual like Stone Soup? Here's your chance to help bring a Knoxville Vegetarian Restaurant into being, and even to help shape the form it takes. Write Norris right now - all you have to do is click on the link - and give him your input. And a little encouragement.

Mary's Vegetarian Hot Tamales to Remain Open Through Summer. Mary's Hot Tamales (operated by Ms. Clara Robinson, sister of the late Mary) will remain open throughout the Summer, though she will not be open on weekends. Ms. Robinson only started making the vegetarian version two years ago in response to popular request, the only vegetarian tamales in town as far as we know. This is the same recipe that former meat-eaters may recall buying from Mr. Green's pushcart years ago in Mechanicsville. You won't miss the meat. Ms. Clara also makes vegetarian chili so you can also have a veggie full house. I'm happy to report that Ms. Robinson has been surprised to discover the veggie tamales outselling the meat versions. She is considering putting Mr. Green's original pushcart back on the streets, but this time with a vegetarian alternative! Mary's Hot Tamales' status as VSET discount vendor is pending, but Ms. Robinson said she's willing to dicker with individual vegetarians.

MARY'S HOT TAMALE'S, 1931 East Magnolia Avenue, Knoxville, TN 37917    •   423-637-2033


Wolf Skip a Burger, Save a Wolf.
Giving up beef will not only help save major predators, like the wolf; that dietary change can also help save whole ecosystems. At Yellowstone the recovery of the wolf has helped restore willow groves, since browsing elk now tend to eat and run. This, in turn, has led to the comeback of moose, beavers, minks, muskrats and ducks. Ecology, it seems, is a complex business, and chopping whole parts of it away for the benefit of special interests can have unanticipated consequences. Learn more at NPR.

No one will be suprised to find that ranchers are wolves' most implacable enemies. They were primarily responsible for the bounties that exterminated wolves from most of our country to start with. They are the group most resistant to reintroducing them. They are the ones who push hardest, once wolves become re-established, despite all odds, to re-exterminate them or at least to be allowed to shoot them on sight; beef producers are now urging that wolves be removed from Endangered Species protection. And some cattlemen, such as gentleman rancher and newscaster Sam Donaldson, advocate following the Triple-S wolf management program, thus avoiding government red tape. The three S's stand for: Shoot, Shovel and Shutup. Meanwhile the cattle of most major beef producers graze on your public lands, often causing substantial damage. Cattlemen don't much like wild horses roaming those ranges either, by the way.

The war against predators is only one of many ways ranching harms the natural wold. A few of the others: rain forest destruction, second-most source of greenhouse gas methane, the worst cause of non-point source water pollution, soil erosion - you really just can't be an environmentalist and still eat beef.

(I almost headed this "Shoot a Rancher, Save a Wolf" as a satirical take on the bumper sticker popular among cattlemen: "Shoot a Wolf, Save a Rancher." But beef producers and anti-environmentalists would be all over something like that - "Vegetarians Call for Slaughter of Ranchers" - so I resisted the impulse. See below for other examples of "Vegeterrorism.

More Health Nut Nonsense from Those Wackos at the Mayo Clinic. Vegetarianism: better for you, better for the environment, and definitely better for the animals. But the Mayo Clinic only weighs in on the first of those aspects. You know, the Mayo Clinic? No, not the lawn care experts; one of the most respected health care and research institutes on earth. It seems, despite the warnings of the cattle industry, that a vegetarian diet's really good for you. Live and learn. And vice versa.

Lose Weight Without Exercise Through Fruit. Remember the ridiculous grapefruit diet? Well, it really worked after all. And that's not the best part: it also may help control diabetes. Yes, we really expect you to believe us. Even if it is too good to be true. We know that there are some overly credulous vegetarians, eager to believe any good news about fruits and vegetables. But we've got the prestigious Scripps Institute to back us up. We await peer review and replications of the study, of course, but meanwhile it couldn't hurt to up your grapefruit intake.

Meat Strikes Back. We know that meat contributes to cardiovascular disease, making it, according to some authorities, as harmful as smoking, and that commercially produced meat is full of dangerous hormones that can have unexpected effects on our bodies such as gynecomastia in men (see below). And we know the profligate use of antibiotics in meat production is increasing the incidence of resistant strains of disease. But our meat of late poses more immediate and potentially even more dangerous consequences: a major vector of disease and a possible breeding ground for diseases man has never before encountered and against which we may have no defenses.

Kroger's, a grocery chain with a large presence in Knoxville has just recalled beef tainted with listeria, a disease best known for the serious contamination of lakes around North Carolina pig factories. Thousands of civet cats, a gourmet treat in China, are being slaughtered and discarded to try to stop the spread of SARS. There's Anthrax, Hoof-and-Mouth, and Mad Cow (below). And, possibly the most ominous: tens of thousands of chickens in Asian countries are being slaughtered, mostly by suffocation, to try to slow the spread of the Avian Flu, a virus that may, it is feared, be contracted by someone who already has a cold, causing that person, and humanity, a very bad time of it. It is feared the Avian flu virus and the human flu virus may exchange genetic information, producing a form of Avian flu that can be transmitted from person to person. If this happens, we are told, we may want to prepare by reading up on the Spanish influenza outbreak that took millions of lives back in 1918. Don't forget, disease has claimed far more lives than all wars combined.

Future CEO's of America. Good grief! Are fraternities still around? You may have thought fraternities were only cloistered refuges for the pampered sons of privilege, where they might find some respite from rubbing shoulders with the children of the Great Unwashed. But it seems they also learn there the mindset that will prepare them for leadership roles out in the real world. Like attitudes of cruelty and indifference to suffering. CNN picks up an AP story about the spread of animal cruelty in Animal Houses across our nation.

Roll Over, Dr. Atkins; Carbs are Good for Us. Your gut told you all along that the Atkins carbophobia was all wrong, and now a 12 year Harvard study confirms your gut's wisdom. Study leader Simin Liu's research revealed that those women who ate the most unrefined carbohydrates were half as likely to become obese as those who ate lots of refined carbohydrates . Could it be the Atkins studies focused on the refined carbs more common in the Amerian diet? It seems unrefined carbohydrates are more filling, release sugar more slowly - which may take the edge off our appetites longer - and may even have enzymes that make us burn more calories. The study was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutirition. We in VSET are refined; our carbs aren't.

BBDudeKnoxville's Meateaters Busted. Knoxville's status as one of the country's fattest cities has earned it the dubious honor of being the first to be chosen for PeTA's new manbreast campaign. Partial to breasts? The one you recently ate at KFC just might show up soon on your formerly manly chest. Not only does obesity, more common in meateaters, sometimes burden men with large breasts, not generally considered attractive in that particular gender, but the hormones in meat can also prompt the development of feminine breasts in men, a condition known to doctors as gynecomastia. (The excess estrogen also poses a health hazard for women.) Recently there has been a tendency in advertising and the media to feminize vegetarianism, suggesting that only women care enough about their health and animal suffering to consider giving up foods they're used to. It's great to have PeTA point out how meat feminizes men. Billboards are a blight on our community, but at least some good may come of this one. Remember: you can't spell "meateater" without "teat."

[Late breaking news: PeTA has given in somewhat to Knoxville outrage; the billboard, now at Strawberry Plains exit on I-40, is to be moved to the Callahan Rd. exit where, presumably, the populace is more broadminded. Also, the breasts are to be covered. Shades of Ashcroft! I thought it was permissable to display a man's chest in our culture

.Mad Cowboy Howard Lyman's Appearance  in Asheville Howard Lyman, Cattle Rancher turned vegetarian, author of "Mad Cowboy," and co-defendant of Oprah Winfrey in notorious "food slander" case, spoke and showed excerpts of his recently released documentary, "Mad Cowboy" at UNCA a few months ago. Sometimes, as members of a small but virtuous minority, it's easy to feel beleaguered and overmatched by the powerful forces arrayed against us: the cattle and poultry industries and the USDA. But having an ally like Mr. Lyman is greatly encouraging. He is a robust man with a powerful grip and would be a good candidate for our Manly Vegetarian section. He is also a well-informed and articulate speaker. And perhaps VSET could bring Mr. Lyman to Knoxville. Mark and I spoke with him, and he is eager to speak here. This is the very sort of event our group needs to draw attention to ourselves and to our message. If the newly sprouted Asheville Vegetarian Society can manage such a coup, surely the VSET, with over 20 years under our non-leather belts, can do likewise. Mr. Howard has invited us to call him and arrange for a detour to K-Town when he next leaves the broad vistas of his Montana ranch to visit our mountains.

Mr Howard's visit was sponsored by the Asheville Vegetarians, so new they don't yet have a website, and Active Students for a Healthy Environment.

[From Press Release] As a fourth-generation dairy farmer and rancher in Montana, no one is more qualified than Howard to speak about the atrocious conditions in today's chemically driven factory farms. In 1996, Howard's comments about today's cows being turned cannibalistic prompted Oprah Winfrey to declare, "It has just stopped me cold from eating another burger!" The Texas Cattlemen's Association took umbrage at that comment and promptly sued Howard and Oprah on the basis of food disparagement laws: Justice prevailed and The Cattlemen suffered a disparaging loss! 

Howard, now a national icon in the animal rights movement, has vowed to educate people on the dangers of current methods of food production, and of course on the benefits of vegetarianism. He will be showing his new documentary which includes information on the brain-eating BSE (or Mad Cow Disease) epidemic and the prospect of the disease becoming widespread in the United States.  This documentary chronicles Howard's amazing journey of  going from a fourth-generation cattleman in Montana to one of the nation's leading animal rights activists and plant-based diet proponents. This is one event you will not want to miss! 

A Good Time to Go Veggie: First Case of Mad Cow in US. In the few days since Mad Cow Disease was discovered in the United States, our meat exports have dropped 90%. The USDA has a solution, though; loyal Americans are being urged to eat more beef. Check out that Atkins diet! You can do your part to help save the meat industry's profits. Of course, it's sobering that even the Japanese are refusing to eat American beef, and they eat the often deadly fugu fish! Read what Sea Shepherd's Captain Watson has to say (Mad Cowboy Howard Lyman is on their board). More on the subject from Compassion Over Killing.
* * *

It is pretty certain that some of the mad cow currently in the news entered our food supply: it was ground up and mixed with the flesh of about 20 other cows to make 10,000 pounds of hamburger, which was then shipped to several states. Recent reports on Mad Cow Disease, or BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopathy), have stated that, nonetheless, the danger to meat-eaters is low as the infectious agent, the prion, is found only in the brain and spinal tissue. This is not true; prions have been found in the muscle tissue of cattle, hamsters and humans, and, at higher levels, in the lymph glands of calves. Whether humans can be infected by these concentrations, lower than in the brain, is not certain, though currently thought unlikely.

So we're pretty much safe, right? After all, who eats brains? Actually, plenty of folks here in the Appalachians; as a lad I enjoyed many a hearty breakfast of scrambled eggs and brains. But, aside from us poor mountaineers, nobody eats those body parts, right? Well, did you ever eat a hot dog?

However, hot dogs and other mystery meats are not the only danger. According to Donald G. McNEIL Jr., writing in the New York Times, any part of the carcass can become contaminated. " is possible for brain tissue to be driven into or splattered on muscles in a slaughterhouse. Animals are usually killed with a blow from a hand-held jackhammer that slams a piston into the skull. The last few beats of the animal's heart can circulate the tissue. Also, sawing a carcass in half can splatter spinal cord tissue around, as can the use of high-pressure jets that strip meat from bone." Yummy.

But, truth to tell, your odds of contracting the human form of BSE, CJD, are slim, even from a diet heavy on meat and light on veggies. You're far, far more likely to die from heart disease, colon cancer or diabetes. And you'll probably just gain all that weight you lost on the Atkins diet right back. Some authorities have compared the dangers of meat eating, even before BSE, with that of smoking. Smoking helps people lose weight, too.

Or... IS IT the first case??. In humans BSE is called variant Creuzfeldt-Jakob Disease, or vCJD. The addition of the word "variant" is to distinguish this form of this terrible affliction from far more common forms. One of the more familiar varieties is thought to be genetic in origin, but hundreds of cases appear each year for no known reason. This last form is, therefore, called sporadic CJD. Now researchers at University College of London have discovered that the same prion (pree-on) that causes vCJD in humans and a certain strain of mice can, instead, cause the sporadic form in a different strain of mice. Can it be that the sporadic form of CJD that kills hundreds in our nation each year is ALSO caused by eating beef and, possibly, other meats? Could be. Dr. Michael Greger discusses this chilling possiblity on the website of the Organic Consumers Association.

Creutzfeldt-Jakob Diet Effective in Losing Weight, Beef Industry Study Says
John Mayer (API)

Scientists at Cattlemens’ Publicity and Research (CPR), a beef industry think tank associated with Dealers, Entrepreneurs, Advertisers and Distributors of Cattle, Organized Worldwide (DEADCOW), announced that a diet heavy in beef derived mainly from cows with bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), sometimes called mad cow disease, can be even more effective in losing weight than the popular meat-heavy Atkins diet.

“Beef that has been sidelined from the slaughtering process by BSE is perfectly safe,” says CPR spokesperson Dr. Adolph Obitus. “I’m afraid the irresponsible liberal media has contributed to an unreasonable fear of mad cow disease. The public is in no danger since the contagious brain and spinal chord tissue is not intended for human consumption. In the unlikely event a consumer might ingest the prion that causes the variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease, that condition takes years to incubate, by which time the consumer might very well have died from other causes.

“And, worst case scenario, should one contract CJD, they would, on the plus side, find weight loss remarkably easy. There would be some undesirable side effects, as there is in gastric bypass surgery, primarily some loss of brain tissue. But science has discovered we only use ten percent of our brain capacity, anyway. We in the beef industry count on the American public to use even less than that. In our culture excess brain capacity can be a liability; just look at the last presidential election.

“The vegetarians and animal rights advocates - most of whom are pagan animal worshippers - who are stirring up this fear of mad cow disease are the very people who should be encouraging the utilization of downed cattle,” Dr. Obitus added. “They seek to portray the meat harvesting process as unpleasant, so, logically, they should encourage the consumption of animals that have died of natural causes. And disease is a part of nature.”

A CPR press release urges all Americans to upsize their beef portions during this time of crisis. To do less, CPR says, is to play into the hands of vegetarian activists and animal rights zealots, many of whom, it claims, may have links to Osama Bin Laden.

[Kidding, just kidding. Don’t sue me, Cattlemen; this is satire, a legally protected form of free speech. At least until Patriot Act II. JM]

Stealers of MountainsA hundred years ago the notion of an evil entity so powerful it could steal the very Tennessee Mountains must have seemed a fanciful fairy tale, perhaps one of the Appalachian Jack Tales. Now it's a cruel reality and our Giant Killer, the Katuah Earth First group, is on the ropes, still reeling from the costs of their last action. Those who previously pledged to help have not yet come across with one thin dime. Help KEF carry on their struggle. See earlier info at our Advocacy page.
Nature Lovers Confront Mountain Destroyers  In scenes remniscent of Tiananmen Square, protestors from many states are at this moment, blocking massive machines of destruction with their own bodies at Zeb Mountain, about 40 miles north of Knoxville. They're trying to save the very mountains that define our region from a process the coal companies call Mountain Top Removal. VSET applauds those brave souls willing to risk imprisonnament and their very lives; the coal mining industry isn't noted for restraint nor for playing by the rules. Send these heroes money to help with legal and other expenses, or at least send them your love. It's another David and Goliath struggle. But the Appalachians have their own giant-killing folk hero, Jack. And, in the stories, Jack always wins.
Confronting Death Machines

Mountain Top RemovalAn earlier mountain top removal

Confronting the MachinesProtesters confront massive machines of destruction with their bodies

National Coal Truck ThreatensCoal vehicle threatens protesters


Duck Justice. Or maybe that should be, You Can't Duck Justice. Animal rights groups have opened a campaign against restaurants and their chefs who prepare and serve pate de foie gras, a "delicacy" that requires the forced feeding of geese and ducks. These activists, like so many who value compassion over currency, have been described as "terrorists." We may object to their methods, but, thus far no environmental or animal activist in the US has harmed any human beings. Only the most dedicated materialist would equate the spray-painting of a restaurant with the carnage of true terrorism.

Lion man may prove high intellect of non-humans. The discovery, as reported in Nature Science, of the world's oldest figurative sculpture, a depiction of a human-lion hybrid, may have been the product of Neanderthals, already known to have created beads and pendants. The fact that this artwork goes beyond a straightforward depiction of real animals and into the world of fantasy suggests that its creators had highly developed imaginations comparable to our own. So what has this to do with animal welfare? Mitochondrial dna has proven that Neanderthals did not interbreed with humans; they were an entirely seperate species. Those who exploit animals justify their cruelty by claiming that non-humans have no higher sensibilities and no real intellect. Neanderthal art proves that at least one non-human species did.
Recent studies confirm, question Neanderthals as seperate species.

Lowen Man

Photo © J.Duckeck /
image Grab some earsHelp spread the word about vegetarianism! Some local events and news items have opened up the public forum in Knoxville on this subject.

A long article favorable to vegetarianism appeared in the August 25 News-Sentinel. At least one letter has already appeared in response. Add your two cents.

A very good letter, not presently at hand, appeared recently in Metro Pulse repudiating editor Barry Henderson's dismissal of vegetarianism, the diet of man's ancestors and a principle aspect of major religions, as a fad. Add a word.

Finally, many in VSET are still seething over the decision of the Earth Day-oriented Earth Fest to invite meat vendors. What's next, a stripmining booth? Can we change Earth Fest's direction? Or should we join with Earth First and other dissatisfied groups in starting a new, real Earth Day celebration?

Our own Cindy McDaniel has sent the Earth Fest board an excellent letter, but many more are needed. You might also consider getting on the board yourself. Write the board members: John Homa, City of Knoxville Solid Waste Office, P.O. Box 1631, Knoxville, TN 37901 (215-2921); Mike Dahl, Knoxville Recycling Coalition, 1914 Ailor Avenue, Suite 206, Knoxville, TN 37921; Ms. Catherine Wilt, UT Conference Center, 600 Henley Street, Knoxville, TN 37996

Cattlemen 9th Dumbest. The National Cattlemen's Beef Association comes in at number 9 on the Business 2.0 list of this year's 101 Dumbest Moments in Business thanks to their clever Cool-2b-Real site, part of their intervention campaign to steer teenage girls away from the perils of vegetarianism. How about a sirloin sleep-over, girlfriends! This is a good sign that the beef industry is starting to get nervous about vegetarian inroads. But we don't want vegetarianism feminized; we want to win the hearts of teenage boys, too. Hey, guys, don't have a cow! (P.S. As a confirmed Mac user I liked number 11, too.) Addendum: Well, as of today Business 2.0 has blocked all pages but the first to non-subscribers - I guess they're not in business for their health - so you may see the 9th Dumbest accomplishment for yourself here (hate to send them any traffic, though). As for the Windows dumbness (referring to the award, not the system) you may read about this particular Microsoft chicanery here.

Boycott Iceland, Japan and Norway! And, oh yeah, Cookeville! Still pouting that more enlightened countries in the IWC won't let them kill Whales, Iceland has decided to thumb its frostbitten nose at the civilized world and kill as many whales as it sees fit. Japan and Norway at least are making the gesture of referring to their whale hunting as "research." So cancel your family's plans to visit the World Chess Championship in Iceland... er, boycott their fish... ummm... Okay, being vegetarians there really isn't a lot we can do individually to pressure Iceland. But you can help Sea Shepherd force the U.S. State Department and DOC to follow US law and evoke economic sanctions. See our Sea Shepherd update for details. And send Captain Watson and his hearty crew a donation to help them, once again, scuttle the Icelandic whaling fleet.
Meanwhile, have a word with the Japaese embassy at 202-238-6700. Drop a line to their UN office and tell their Prime Minister of your impressions of Japan. Is this really the country of Zen and Shinto and nature haikus? Or is it the land of street corner oxygen dispensers and anime porn?
Addendum: Whales are cockroaches, Japanese fisheries official says. (So why not eat roaches instead?). If it's any comfort, some Nipponese who just can't live without whale meat are really eating horse. That should help balance our trade deficit with Japan. Help even more; don't buy Japanese stuff.
Ignoring IWC Rules, Japan Shows Contempt for Law; Shocked that their Youth Does Same. O
nce Japan was considered one of the safest places on earth. Houses were not locked, purses were left unattended, and commuters slept on the train without concern for their briefcases. Now Japanese crime is skyrocketing. Of course, the nation of Japan routinely skirts international whaling laws. It's important to set a good example for your kids.

And About Cookeville... Let us not forget: the boycott of Cookeville, Tennessee, to protest their failure to discipline the cop who shotgunned an innocent family's pet as it approached him, wagging its tail, has not been lifted. The incident achieved national notoriety early last year after The Highway Patrol car's video tape - the one in the Cookeville prowl car was "accidentally" erased - was publicized. Officer Eric Hall's cowardly reaction to a non-threatening dog would have shamed the average paperboy (or papergirl). It is not clear from the audio whether or not Hall actually said, "Eeek!" before pulling the trigger. To express his gratitude to Cookeville for endorsing his pathetic lack of fortitude, Officer Hall is suing the city for giving out too much information about him. Serves them right. If you wish to email Officer Hall, be sure not to say anything that might be interpreted as a threat. It's illegal, and, besides, it seems he's gotten plenty of them already. And we know how easily frightened he is. A sample of what Mr. Hall has done for Tennessee's image can be seen at Cookeville Cops Comics.

Lazarus Dog to Represent Unwanted Pets.  The California group In Defense of Animals has chosen Quentin, the stray that inexplicably survived a trip to the Stray Rescue of St. Louis gas chamber with other, less fortunate or less hardy unwanted animals, to star in their campaign to reduce the number of unwanted pets in the US. They will donate $5000 to the St. Louis shelter to assist in eliminating their gas chamber in favor of more humane methods.

New Health Risk from Beef Reported!  Oh, wait... we don't care; we're vegetarians.  Well, of course we reallydo care, especially about poor, innocent children who trustingly eat meat fed them by unwitting parents. We all know about e. coli in hamburger; there are 20,000 cases a year. It's all those feces being ground up with the meat; hard to avoid, really. Now there is suspicion a juicy steak can also be a vector of this disease. See MSNBC to learn more about this and also about salmonella, listeria and campylobacter, other meat-borne diseases. To say nothing of what meat does to your arteries. That apple a day thing works best when you eat the apple instead of a hamburger.

Bush Environmental Report Card  We're very disappointed in W. He's just not perfoming up to his potential in protecting the environment. The non-partisan League of Conservation Voters Report Card gives our president a failing grade for favoring corporate interests over the public good. League president Deb Callahan says, “President Bush is well on his way to compiling the worst environmental record of any president in the history of our nation.”

Fast Food Vege Chain Launched  Two restaurateurs who cut their teeth vending meat have opened Mr. Goodburger, the first of what they hope will be an international chain of veggieburger joints. One advantage for franchisees: no expensive grease traps needed. They plan on 100 stores the first year.

Listen to TARA On The Air.  The elusive Jaguar hosts this program devoted to animal welfare, and the benefits of vegetarianism to humans, animals and the environment is a frequent topic. There are occasional expert guests, and call-ins are welcome. 90.9 FM Monday nights at 6 on KFAR.

YOU may be a Terrorist!  Ever said bad things about factory farms or animal experimentation? Brought to our attention by the show above, a proposed law, HB 433, would subject family farm and animal rights activists to jail time and a fine of up to $10,000 for taking pictures of penned-up animals on factory farms, joining an environmental organization involved in a corporate campaign, or even donating to a group involved in peaceful protests or civil disobedience against corporate farms. Shades of Saddam! Scroll Advocacy.

Vegeterrorists, Part 2 Maybe we can't track down Osama Bin Ladin, but we can sure put those furrin vegetarians in their place. Professor Rosalind Gruben of Sussex, England reports that, upon attempting to enter the US to deliver a series of vegetarian raw foods lectures, she was subjected to the sort of abuse we used to associate with the treatment American missionaries sometimes got when entering totalitarian countries. Her account. And don't forget: Tom Ridge and the FBI know when you check out vegetarian cookbooks from your library. And the packet-sniffing software they use to spy on your email is code-named "Carnivore."

But SURELY you eat FISH...  Vegetarians are informed by a variety of philosophies and motivations. If avoiding the high mercury content in fish isn't reason enough to exclude them from your diet, how about saving the oceans from mass extinction? Scroll down our Advocacy page. Another good reason to suppot Sea Shepherd.

Mercury, King of the Sea  Turns out tuna's not a health food after all, and our own TVA is part of the reason. High methylmercury concentrations are sickening women and children and have even caused deaths. Though the FDA has the data, no warnings are issued. Surely profits are not being placed above public health! Surely. See Bill Moyers' NOW and The Mercury Policy Project.

Organic Torture Perhaps you thought "organic" also meant cruelty-free. The USDA agreed with you until recently, but they've changed their minds. Guess who persuaded them. See Advocacy.

Sugar Industry Threatens World Health Organization How dare the WHO suggest that sugar is not a health food?!! It's a part of a well-rounded diet for well-rounded people! In a struggle of good versus evil as clearcut as any we've seen since the days when Bucky Beaver battled Mr. Tooth Decay, the powerful sugar lobby is threatening to urge congress to cut off funding for the WHO (the US supplies about 25%) for having the effrontery to suggest no more than 10% of our calories should come from sugar. Our Sugar Daddies figure 25% is about right. You know, Count Chocula is really a pretty good symbol for the sugar industry. See articles at Common Dreams  and Commercial Alert.

Rumbling Falls Cave Saved What would you do if you discovered a cave that contained one of the two largest chambers in America and at least 20 species of cave fauna, one of the richest cave ecosystems in the world? Well, if you worked for the Tennessee Water Quality Control Board or the Department of Environment and Conservation you'd empty sewage into it. Advocacy.

Vegetarianism in the Media

Vegetarianism is on Solid Ground, Health Experts Say. And it's well-composted ground, too. This USAToday Health and Science article's a couple of years old, but I just came across it.

SharkFinding Nemo The new animated film from Apple Computer creator Steve Job's Pixar Studios and Disney, Finding Nemo, features a vegetarian shark. According to one online reviewer: "Bruce the veggie shark - 'fish are friends not food' - gobbles up the scenery whenever he's on screen."

Tobey Maguire says that his vegetarian diet was no impediment to buffing up for his Spiderman role, trimming down again for Seabiscuit, then muscling up again for the Spiderman sequel. "I'm a vegetarian so I did have to concentrate on eating enough protein and I would get that through soy and nuts and beans and shakes." Tobey Online

Vegepiestarian Reci

weight watchers recipes

Membership InfoLow Fat Recipes
We need your ideas, your energy, and your excitement! This is your opportunity to participate in a social program that has tremendous validity and can fill a huge need in our local world as well as our universal world. Interested in better health, a cleaner environment, a better-fed world populace, and an end to violence and cruelty to our fellow species? Then this is the the organization for you. Go ahead and get involved, take a stance, represent your world in a positive and constructive way. "Take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented." ( Elie Wiesel) If these words ring true or strike a chord within you, then bring your compassion and your creativity and, at 6 PM on the first Sunday of every month, a vegan/vegetarian potluck dish to the Unitarian Church building on Kingston Pike.  [Jay Strozier, Outgoing President, VSET (Phone# 865-689-2446]

Thoughts from former VSET President, Jay Strozier (from Vegetarian Voice) "[W]e look forward to branching out and increasing our outreach through advertising, lectures, and nutritional education. We would like to increase our support for like-minded organizations. We would also like to file for our 501c3 status thereby facilitating the writing of grants. My dream is to write a history of ETVS. We know if we want to grow, we must involve more people, and work through committees, striving to achieve our goals. We extend the invitation to all East Tennesseeans to join us to promote good health, stewardship of our earth, animal rights, and eliminate world hunger. When you think about it, very few issues offer such powerful all-encompassing possibilities for supporting positive changes in our society.

Vegetarianism/veganism is vital and important to our planet's resources and is compassionate towards its inhabitants. It would seem we should scream out our message from every rooftop. How are your vocal cords? Won't you join us in this valuable pursuit? If everyone helps just a little, we can accomplish a lot. "

On Sale Now! ! Our first VSET cookbook featuring 150 vegan and vegetarian recipes collected by the members of VSET. Price is $7.00 or three books for $18.00. This cookbook has details about our organization and our mission in East Tennessee. Proceeds from the sale of these books will be used to help us to continue to promote and educate East Tennessee about the benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle. These make great gifts and are nicely bound with a colorful laminated cover and category separators. Supplies are limited! Contact Jay Strozier at 689-2446 (or e-mail for more info on how to get your copy, or purchase copies at the next Cooking School, held the first Sunday of every month at the Unitarian Church on Kingston Pike.

This Unworthy Webgrasshopper Humbly Implores Your Forgivenss. My prideful self-satisfaction at having brought the moribund VSET (formerly ETVS) site back to life was dealt a severe blow when my computer went on the fritz thanks to the fact that I have no backup drive and I discovered too late my 40 gig hard drive was completely full. Turns out that's not a good thing for yourFile Allocation Table (or FAT; see how techie I'm becoming?) But thanks to the skillful work of two very clever fellows Hillary Mayer and Jonathon (Last Name to be filled in) I seem to have lost no files.Once again our poor webpage has fallen into neglect, but I have returned to weed and prune and to spread a little fertilizer. Drop us a line to let us know you're still dropping 'round.

Our former Webmistress, Jennifer, who created the site you see here, was unable to continue to devote the considerable time needed for regular updates and we have undertaken to educate ourselves in the Ways of the Web and to learn the arcane language of web wizardry, html. I cannot yet lay claim to the title of Webmaster; I am but a humble Webgrasshopper. Nonetheless, any blunders are mine and should be called to the attention of myself, John Mayer. While you're at it, kindly tell me how to fix them. JM

Thanks, Jennifer, for the greatSork you did here. Jennifer has her own terrific "Famous Vegetarians" website that you will want to visit: If you've tried this link in the past, it has been broken, but is now fixed. Here are a couple of similar sites I added before I figured out the problem:
And, for a list of Not-So-Famous Vegetarians: therefore

By the way, it turns out Hitler wasn't a vegetarian after all. Nyaah, nyaah.

VSET Needs You!

VSET is a nonprofit organization that relies heavily on volunteer support, as well as material and financial gifts.  If you would like to help out, call Jay Strozier 689-2446.

You are visitor number Visitor Counter (counter courtesy of Web Counter)

Add Me!
Support LCA - Justice for Animals!
powered by
Korrnet Logo


All images and text on the VSET site are property of their respectie copyright holders and may not be used without permission.