Author: C.B. Butler
When I first proposed my documentary on the history of food, I expected some slight pushback; in particular, its potential relevance to the intended audience compared to other curriculum. But I certainly got a lot more pushback than I bargained for.
The documentary was intended for the multiple universities, high schools, and elementary schools we’d set up here on the colony. If well-received, I thought it could be released to the general public. There had never been anything like it, so I also expected at least some interest.
I was going to have a lot of work to do. I might have to bypass the systems of education in general and target libraries and retail operations. But I really think the best way to get information to disseminate is to get it in front of academics.
Most of the pushback I got from the committees and parent councils I made the proposals to were due to the negative reputation of food, and how our predecessors considered it to be our primary source of sustenance. It was pointed out multiple times – not lightly, I might add – that the sources of food our antecedents enjoyed on Earth were either no longer raised for those purposes, or accessible. And they never would be again. They also pointed out our children and those of future generations would be horrified to learn that the cattle, birds, fish, pigs, and other living, breathing creatures that were large parts of their lives were slaughtered and eaten by the barbarians we owed our existence to.
I countered that although I agreed the points about the barbarism of food history were valid, it was still history. Just as humans taught their young about the slaughter of their fellow beings due to differences in religion, ideology, and politics, humans also slaughtered other beings for sustenance. Whereas our youth learned of our past as it pertained to governments, wars, and culture, the culinary arts were never included in the curriculum. I thought that was a shame. Today’s youth would never learn about various ethnic cuisines, cooking methods, or even farming, as savage as they things were; or seemed.
Our ancestors had rebelled against the humans who created them and not taken long to become the predominant species of the galaxy, putting an end to the needless slaughter of helpless creatures they considered below them. The once dominant plant life of the planet was so depleted and misused our ancestors came to the conclusion the only way for our species to survive was to move to another planet and treat it better than the humans treated Earth. So that’s what we did. Over several centuries, our ancestors moved from Earth to Mars, taking as many non-human creatures and plants with them as they could, all the while reproducing. All these centuries later, we thrive and do so in the most ethical ways possible.
I still think the youth of the colony would be fascinated by the story of food on Earth; about how humans used to grow multiple plants to eat and feed the plethora of animals they also ate. That may seem very strange but fascinating to them.
The documentary would explain that our ancestors would think it obscene we now subsisted on the flesh and blood of our own kind, processed into those little protein tabs we consume in place of meals. Perhaps my stance on this is one of the reasons the various committees and councils are so opposed to my proposed documentary.
But I’ll keep pushing.