If the United Nations gets its way, the American diet will undergo an amazing metamorphosis.
According to the Associated Press, the U.N. is touting edible insects as a low-fat, high-protein food for humans, pets and livestock. The international body believes that if we would join the two billion earthlings who already merrily consume bugs, it would go a long way toward fighting hunger, global warming, pollution, unemployment and frog envy.
How appropriate that the U.N. try to steer us away from traditional meats and toward the humble insect! The delegates are the ones who swarm into New York City like locusts, devouring steak, lobster, edible undies and everything else imaginable.
We’re advised to get over our cultural shock and get with the program, since we already consume so many allowable insect parts per million in our food (not counting insects used for coloring and other additives). Okay.
And we already get radiation from outer space, but that’s no reason to chortle, “Hey, wouldn’t it be a hoot if we could steer the earth into the path of an asteroid?”
Squeamish taste buds are not the only obstacle. I imagine animal rights activists will hang posters exploiting those big soulful compound eyes.
The U.N. plan does sound good on (fly) paper, but I fear it would cause many wrenching changes for society. For instance, what will become of the marijuana industry when listening to “Flight of the Bumblebee” is all you need to get the munchies?
I’m not sure if I want to live in a land where momma bedbugs tell their children, “Good night, sleep tight, don’t let the homo sapiens bite...”
Disney’s Jiminy Cricket would have to change his tune in the new world order. (“When you wish upon a star/Watch out for the rancher with the big glass jar.”)
Do we want a world where a time-honored song is changed to “God Save The Queen; We’ll Have Her For Dessert”? Where a restaurant’s “special sauce” is revealed to be Raid!? Where termites are added to make the house salad the “house-destroyer salad”? Where Roach Motel refers to the complimentary breakfast rather than the occupants?
Do we want a world with cutesy “It’s the GNAT-ural alternative” advertising slogans, “Flee Cholesterol or Flea Cholesterol: You Be The Judge” banners, and “out of stock” grocery signs replaced with “No Bugs, M’Lady”?
I doubt the U.N. busybodies will be satisfied until we’re all living in grass huts and milking yaks. (“Hey, if you really want your food to go farther, you could elongate your neck like those African tribes and...”)
Can we really trust humans not to mess up the system, by overharvesting insects, fighting over branding iron patents or getting greedy and pumping the little devils full of steroids? (“To harvest this year’s moth crop, we will need 5,000 workers, a new shipment of nets and — oh, yeah — Godzilla.”)
I know. I know. Logic and reason side with the insect diet, in terms of efficiency and lowered environmental impact. But tradition makes me want to stay in my comfort zone.
I want to switch off my brain and enjoy menu blurbs that describe entrees as “mouth-watering,” “succulent,” “savory” and “decadent” — not “There’s no debate: it’s like Aristotle on a bun! Mmm-mmm.”
Danny welcomes reader e-mail responses at firstname.lastname@example.org and visits to his Facebook fan page “Tyree’s Tyrades.”
©2013 Danny Tyree