Welcome to Fantasy Chicken Island
This vegan is stuck on a hypothetical island with a chicken to determine how hypocritical I am. Let’s play!
Dear omnivores of the world,
Happy New Year! Is it too late after January 1 to say that? I hope not. 2020 was a doozy and 2021 is shaping up to be, um…memorable, but, hey, it’s still a fresh year and in the spirit of new beginnings, there’s a little something I’d like to get some clarity on.
I just have to ask: What is it about you and your obsession with deserted islands with chickens and a single hungry vegan on it? Or sometimes it’s pigs instead of chickens, but either way, it’s weird already.
One of the things you may not realize as a meat-eater is that your people spend an inordinate amount of time trying to get vegans to imagine living on a desert island. Not just because our presence creates a buzzkill at every BBQ but because you just seem to really want to want us to spend time envisioning a hypothetical situation, namely what we would do if we were stranded on a deserted island with a chicken.
Coincidentally enough, as a child of the 1970s, I spent a fair amount of time contemplating what it would be like to be stranded on an island because of a terrible/beloved TV sitcom I watched with rapt attention, specifically the one named after a hapless but lovable first mate, the Isle of Gilligan. I imagined what kind of variety show I’d put on as the castaways seemed to be really taken with them (hey, you’d be bored, too), and I intuitively grasped the concept of “suspension of disbelief” due to Thurston and Lovey Howell packing as much as they did for a three-hour tour. I didn’t really think about being stranded with a chicken, though. It was a failure of my imagination. Perhaps if I had, I’d be better prepared for the onslaught of moral questions I’d get once I went vegetarian at 15, especially this one about chicken island. Once I went vegan, this question started being pitched at me at an even more astonishing rate. Seeing as I’ve never been the seafaring type, I found the setting hard to accept, though I have gotten myself into some jams before, so, whatever. I will accept it.
“What if you are stranded on an island with just a chicken? Would you eat the…