Letter to the editor: Carnivorous Anthropocentrism!

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We knew it was coming. It was inevitable.

Every time Reader food writer Mike Sula ventures deep into the realm of carnivorousness, we're going to hear from Brien Comerford. Here's his latest salvo, in response to Sula's feature story "Chicken of the trees."


To: letters
Sent: Thu, Aug 16, 2012 10:49 pm
Subject: Carnivorous Anthropocentrism!

Reading the August 16 Headline article was tantamount to concurrently having both mortifying hallucinations and horrific realizations that carnivorous anthropocentrism is exacerbating and perpetuating mankind's descent into perdition. The columnist's grandeur for the omnipotent intelligence of man and irreverent lack of respect for the earthly value for animals is palpably laden with vainglory. Instead of sanely promoting the virtues of veganism he spirals out of control and condones the hunting, butchering and unpalatable consumption of squirrels. The latter are wretchedly demonized as veritable vermin and so are raccoons, opossums and deer. The columnist's bogus empathy for the plight of cows and chickens in factory farms and slaughterhouses is farcical. I'm finally convinced that the only people on this planet that have any sanity and serenity are the Jains of India. They adhere to the creed of ahimsa that mandates believers not to cause any pain or suffering to any innocent beings. Under no circumstances will they eat the dead flesh of our fellow creatures. Carnivorous anthropocentrism is anathema to them and the enlightened animal lovers, Hindus, Christians, Buddhists, Muslims and Jews who eschew flesh-foods. The moral illuminati know that killing animals for food is a spiritual crime and smoking pot is not. Holy cow, they're right!

Brien Comerford
Glenview

In June, when we recommended Sausagefest, we got this:

Date: Fri, Jun 1, 2012 at 7:10 PM
Subject: Grotesque Sausagefest!
To: letters@chicagoreader.com

Since we live in a fallen, inimical world rife with violence, strife and irreverence for life, it was not surprising that Sausagefest Chicago was lauded as a Reader-recommended event. If we lived in a civilized, peaceful world wherein all life was respected there would be widespread arrests and universal detest for Sausagefest, an event that relishes gorging on dead animal flesh. This causes moral and spiritual distress for animal lovers who remain blessed via knowing that Sausagefest is frankly grotesque !

Brien Comerford
Glenview

In fact, we've received so many letters from Comerford over the years that we once ran a story about him: "The creatures' correspondent." Patrick Daily began the story thusly:

"Brien Comerford can be counted on to take the bait. All kinds of bait. Whenever animals, the environment, or vegetarianism come up in a publication, he's sure to fire off a letter. Over the last dozen years he's written 15 to 30 missives a week lashing out at what he considers the mistreatment of animals. 'I love to write, so I just decided I'm going to respond to whatever I read. It's like a stimulus/response,' he says. 'I feel my blood pressure go up, and I just have to respond.'"

Keep 'em coming, Brien.

And we've covered squirrels before (though never eating them).

In 2002 Susan DeGrane wrote about the Squirrel Lovers' Club. ("Squirrels are a cause celebre for some.")

And in our old Field & Steet column, Jerry Sullivan wrote about the critters more than once:

From 1996: "I didn't plan to make a career out of writing about squirrels."

From 1997: "Our gray squirrels are looking plump and sleek this time of year. Their fur is luxuriant, by squirrel standards, their tails broad and bushy, and as they leap about, their bellies hit the turf with every bound."

Umm, sounds like some good eating that year.

Check out Sullivan's book Hunting for Frogs on Elston and Other Tales From Field & Street, available from the University of Chicago Press.

Happy hunting!

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