Have you ever heard of the word ‘carnism’?
Let me explain:
It was coined by Psychologist Dr Melanie Joy and it means an invisible belief system or ideology that conditions people to eat certain animals. It is basically the opposite of vegetarism, veganism or whole plant food eating.
The word comes from ‘carn’ meaning ‘flesh’ and ‘ism’ meaning a belief system.
Because carnism is both invisible and the predominant eating pattern of a meat-eating culture, people don’t even think why they eat one animal but not another. They also don’t realize that eating animals is a choice, just as eating plants is a choice.
People in one culture wouldn’t question eating cows, sheep and pigs, however, those same people are horrified that there are other cultures that eat dogs, cats and horses.
Carnism is currently the dominant belief system.
As Dr Joy says
“Carnistic bias is built into the very foundation of society – when we study nutrition, for example, we actually study carnistic nutrition”
Sadly, Carnism is a violent belief system. It is centred around the massive billion dollar animal industry of intensive animal farming with over 77 billion animals being slaughtered each year (and that doesn’t include animals like rabbits or aquatic sea life such as fish).
Even the so-called ‘humane’ animal farming of organic, free-range, dairy and eggs have a definite cruel and brutal side of exploiting the animals.
There is hope though because there is a definite rise in veganism as people start to open their eyes to the abusive animal food system. Not only that, but we are seeing more and more people making changes to incorporate whole plant foods into their diets for their own health.
I may not see it, but I know future generations will see the demise of carnism taking it from ‘normal’ to ‘fringe’.
This is a really good video to watch which probably explains it better.