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The UN meeting and What I’ve Been Up To

Dear Readers,

It has been ages since I have written anything on here, over a year actually. The past year I spent studying in Australia was one of personal growth brining me closer to my passions in life! For this reason, my blog has gone through some renovations. I have kept some of my old postings which I feel are still relevant to my way of being, but anything that no longer fits my values has been removed.

As some of you know I was granted the opportunity of attending a high level meeting at UN headquarters recently and as promised I am reporting back on the experience. If you have been following the UN plans, you would have heard of the Sustainable Development Goals which are taking over where the Millennium Development Goals left off. To give a brief overview of what they are in case you haven’t been following, here are the MDG’s:

mdgs_1_

and here are the SDG’s:

 sdg-chart

The bar has been set very high with these new goals and it’s questionable whether or not all of this is achievable in only 15 years time. I do like the idea of aiming high though because it’s not just about achieving the set goals, but making consistent measurable progress. With the SDG’s I have been happy to see that they are much more specified then the MDG’s and there is a much greater focus on protecting the environment simultaneously with growing the economy.

The meeting I attended was  the EATx2015, EAT is a collaboration between multiple sectors with the goal of feeding the planet in an effective and sustainable way. http://www.eatforum.org/

Of everything that was discussed at the meeting, I was most enlightened by Peter Freedman of the Consumer Goods Forum who raised many points about private and public sector working together to build more sustainable practices and gave me some food for thought. I found this enlightening because for the most part I don’t purchase any groceries from the large consumer goods companies. I purchase my groceries from a small grocery store which sells local organic produce, farmers markets and a local butcher where the chickens are sourced from nearby farms. Over the past while I have been completely opposed to large food manufactures due to their use of unsustainable ingredients, and also due to the fact that I may have been sold chicken labelled organic and free range which may not have actually been.

 My thoughts on what Mr. Freedman presented were: The large scale food industry isn’t going anywhere any time soon, and the average uninformed consumers who live in their bubbles aren’t going to suddenly start caring about global issues and heading to the farmers market at a rate high enough to make a large impact so improving upon the practices of the food industry makes complete sense! Some further thoughts on this are, hypothetically, if we did make that leap in a very short amount of time where we all shunned the large food industry and decided to opt for organically grown sustainably farmed groceries. It would be a disaster.Many hard working people would be out of jobs and there would be a massive food shortage. So the solution seems to be baby steps over time, people need to be given the time to be shown and adapt to new ways, there needs to be transition time from one level to the next. I won’t be doing my grocery shopping at the big box stores any time soon though 🙂

In addition to this, my overall thoughts on the message of the UN is that the MDG’s, the SDG’s etc. are; it’s great for people who are involved with international development and informed, but to the average person it could all be a little overwhelming and disengaging. To me this is a huge problem because the goals set out by the UN are not going to be achieved just by nations working together on large scale projects. It’s going to be achieved by individuals making better choices by taking morals and ethics into consideration rather than only considering “I want”.

Mmmm Alligator

Hello everyone 🙂 I haven’t blogged in quite a while because I’ve been super busy so not in the right head space to be writing anything. Still busy, but I was struck with an idea about something to write today thanks to this photo I saw on Facebook earlier in the day. Many of the comments were talking about how this is cruel and inhumane.

I have no idea if the people making those comments are vegetarians and/or vegans for ethical purposes, if so, fair enough. In that case they would say the same about eating any animal. However, if they eat a typical diet consisting of mass produced chickens and cattle how is this any worse? I’m fine with people saying “ewww, gross” implying they wouldn’t eat this, but when a judgement is made saying it’s cruel to eat one animal and not another that bothers me a bit because really an animal is an animal whether it’s a chicken, a gator or a kangaroo.

Perhaps we’re just socially conditioned to only accept killing and eating certain types of animals.  This is how I see it:

Farm animals: cows, chicken, pigs, lambs….these can be eaten

forest animals: moose, deer etc….these can be eaten

sea animals: fish, shell fish, crustaceans….these can be eaten

zoo/safari animals: kangaroo, zebra, monkey……absolutely cannot be eaten

pet animals: dogs cats etc…..absolutely cannot be eaten

To be honest I find the consumption of any animals that falls under the last two categories to be pretty disgusting. However, due to the fact that they are more likely to be “free range” rather than factory produced I would have to say that eating a kangaroo, zebra or monkey would be less cruel and inhumane than eating a chicken.

I think people should just be more open minded about cultural differences in terms of what can be eaten, just because it seems odd and is something you would never eat doesn’t make it wrong. I am sure some of you are wondering how or why I even condone eating animals period considering I was a vegan for a little while. It’s because the motivation behind my veganism wasn’t so much ethical as it it was about my own health. It was ethical in a sense that I didn’t want to eat animals that were crammed into overpopulated warehouses and fed unnatural diets. I still don’t eat those, I only eat free range, and yes I do realize this must have been one of my weirdest blog topics to date.

What’s  your opinion?

F@#K America! And Can I Get A Grande Caramel Macchiato Please?

This weeks post came to fruition due to a thought I had….”If most of the world hates America so much and trash talks them, why do they eat their trash?” Being Canadian, and having traveled to many places where I’ve mingled with locals, I have witnessed quite a bit of trash talk about Americans. Heck, even on the news in the EU I heard a lot of anti American statements….and I will admit, I laughed my ass off!

What really boggles my mind though is, despite all the criticism, it’s always the American chain that goes global…..WHY? Seriously, why would anyone want to follow anything that has to do with the lifestyle of a country that has one of the highest rates of obesity, a crap load of debt AND a many citizens who wouldn’t even be able to locate on a map 50% of the countries where American franchises have set up shop due to lack of awareness of anything outside their bubble?…..it’s even funnier when they have too much pride/ego to admit they’re not familiar with something….reminds me of this show that was popular here a while back, and my god I wish it would come back LOL fast forward to 4:30 to hear about the Toronto Polar Bear slaughter, lmao….this will leave you all speechless…

Ok, anyway, back to my main point about foreign investment in American franchises, WHY? The only theory I can think of…..there’s drugs in those burgers, why do you think they call it a happy meal!? *wink wink* and there’s drugs in that Starbucks coffee! What else could it be? I mean…why haven’t any of the Canadian chains gone global? Second Cup is really comparable to Starbucks, some of their drinks are even better! We just haven’t exploded cause we’re lacking drugs!

Here’s a prime example of how even some of the strongest anti Americans can be warped by the drugs, fast forward to 4:40

I wish I could say to everyone don’t do drugs….but I’m pretty guilty of that one myself (Starbucks is hard to say no to) How sad is this, I feel I’ve found the solution to a major global problem…..it’s really so simple, just put the drugs down! but how do we do it when we’re all just a bunch of addicts…..I guess one of the positive outcomes of all of this is, in 20 years or so the signs of all Starbucks and other American chains all around the world (including America) will look like this and we will all be greeted with “Ni hao” 😉 and if you don’t understand that last comment about everything eventually being Chinese…..maybe do some reading and watch the news before you come back to my blog 😛

PS. follow me on twitter! https://twitter.com/#!/michelle_sankar