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290VSS eNewsletter 13 December 2007

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  • George Jacobs
    Dec 12, 2007


      VSS eNewsletter, 13 December 2007


      A Merry Xmas to Our Christian Readers and

      A Happy, Healthy, Holistic 2008 to Everyone!


      VSS News

      Translating Materials into Chinese and Other Languages

      Letter to the ST Forum Page


      Other News

      Vegetarianism Needn’t Be All or Nothing

      A Christmas Wish to All for A Safer & Healthier Family

      New Veg Places

      From Canada

      International Progress

      Two Coffee Table Books

      Another Forum Page Letter


      VSS News

      Translating Materials into Chinese and Other Languages

      Many VSS materials are bilingual. For example, our Seeds VCD has Chinese subtitles. Below is a request for Chinese translation of a non-VSS video we featured in our newsletter last month – ‘Earthlings’, which you can watch online for no charge and/or you can support the production of such films by purchasing Earthlings: http://veg-tv.info/Earthlings


      Here are excerpts from the email we received.


      First of all, thank you for all the newsletters I have received. They are most interesting, with updates of news, new footstalls in Singapore , videos, etc. I have been a vegetarian for the past 22 years. I became one coz of the shocking treatment I saw towards animals when I was young. I thought, why should I eat meat, when I can survive on vegetables? Why do I have to kill indirectly? It's a myth that one grows up weak if one doesn't eat meat!
      After I saw the "Earthlings' video you posted online, I was very much saddened.  I quickly copied it on CDs to pass around to some friends to persuade them to turn to vegetarianism, even if for only a few days. The narration was good, but there wasn’t any Chinese. I would be very happy if I could pass copies to Chinese-educated people to persuade them to follow this cause.
      –Iven Ong


      If you can help translate veg materials into Chinese (or other languages), pls contact info@....


      Letter to the ST Forum Page

      Last week, a VSS Exco member published the following letter (slightly revised) in the online version of ST’s Forum. It’s easy to submit letters to the various newspapers by email.


      One solution for Global Warming is often left out of the discussion. This solution is perhaps the easiest and certainly the tastiest. The solution is to reduce our meat consumption.


      Just how much meat production contributes to Global Warming has only recently become clear. The 2006 UN report, ‘Livestock’s Long Shadow’ (available free online), blames meat production for 18% of greenhouse gas emissions.


      How does meat cause heat? Two ways. First, eating meat is wasting food. This waste occurs because for every kg of meat we eat, we have to feed many kgs of plant food to the cows, chickens, etc. It just makes sense; do human children gain 1kg of weight for every 1kg they eat?


      As a result of the waste of food caused by meat eating, we need to grow much more plant food. This means more forests cut down to grow crops, which means more CO2 released and fewer trees to soak up CO2.


      The second way that meat production contributes to global warming is because eating meat gives the world a bad case of gas: greenhouse gas. In addition to CO2, meat production is a key culprit in the release of two other gases with more powerful global warming force than CO2: methane and nitrous oxide.


      Methane, about 20 times more powerful a greenhouse gas than CO2, is a by-product of the digestive process of animals, such as cows, and nitrous oxide, more than 200 times more powerful a greenhouse gas than CO2, is found in the manure the animals produce.


      Thus, eating meat is wasting food, and eating meat gives the world a bad case of gas: greenhouse gas. Fortunately, there’s a tasty solution readily available. All we need to do to decrease our contribution to Global Warming is to eat less meat. Every meatless meal can mean less global warming.


      Luckily, we in Singapore are blessed with over 300 vegetarian restaurants and food stalls, plus non-vegetarian eateries that provide meatless options, and wet markets, shops and supermarkets loaded with tasty meat-free foods.


      Even better, eating less meat not only reduces global warming, it also helps our own health by increasing our intake of fruits and vegetables. Last, but not least, by eating less meat, we show empathy for our fellow animals by putting fewer of them into the cruel factory farm system from which most of our meat comes these days.


      Other News

      Vegetarianism Needn’t Be All or Nothing

      Here, from a local website, is a good point to be made to non-veg people with whom we talk.




      Vegetarianism: Trying Harder

      Many meat-lovers who know deep down that it is better to be vegetarians are nevertheless fixated on the idea that one is either a full-time vegetarian or not. The truth is, it need not be so clear-cut. If one truly realises it is better to go vegetarian, but is still attached to the taste of meat, one can still make a point to be vegetarian most of the time, or choose to eat less (and less) meat.

      Just because one chooses not to commit to being a full-time vegetarian doesn't mean there is no way to be an “almost” full-time vegetarian. The same logic would apply to the vegan cause. Whether one is already a vegetarian or not, if one sees the advantages of being vegan, one should strive to be vegan as much as possible; instead of not trying at all.

      To be true to one's understanding of the benefits (to one's health, animals' welfare, starving humans, the planet's health...) of vegetarianism is to try one's best; to not excuse yourself totally just because of greed (or any other reason) for meat. Of course, even if one is vegetarian most of the time, one should not “undo” one's efforts by feasting on many animal products occasionally in one go. That too, would be being untrue to the vegetarian or vegan cause.


      A Christmas Wish to All for A Safer & Healthier Family

      Eco-Harmony Global Network Ltd & Kampung Senang Charity & Education Foundation jointly present “A Christmas Wish to All for A Safer & Healthier Family” organic buffet lunch & talk on “Making Simple Changes for a Safer &

      Healthier Family”.


      Price: $30.00 per pax (talks, Christmas door gift & buffet lunch)

      Venue: Blk 106 Aljunied Crescent #01 - 205

      Date: 21 & 22 Dec

      Time: 10:00am to 11:45am (English Talk); 11:45am to 1:30pm (Buffet Lunch);

      1:30pm to 3:15pm (Mandarin Talk)

      Info: 6742.6627


      New Veg Places

      1. Deli Vege Restaurant
      200 South Bridge Road
      Tel: 6223.9686
      Opening: 7am to 11pm; 24hrs Fri, weekends and public holiday eve
      Oriental, Western, Japanese and Asian vegetarian cuisine


      2. Nature Zone, an organic shop with some ready-to-eat food, at Tanjong Pagar Plaza – Blk 1, #02-06, run by Adeline Lo – 9822.9775, 6223-6234, sales.naturezone@..., 10am-6.30pm – Mon-Sat. closed Sun


      3. Forrest Dew Vegetarian Restaurant, Blk 23 Bendemeer Road, #01-523 (3 blocks from Boon Keng MRT and just beside Kallang CC), Tel: 6293.9579,

      air-conditioned, open Mon-Sun 7am-10.30pm. Selling Chinese, Western, Japanese and Indian food (nice roti prata). Set meals or individual dishes; Minimum prices are $3/$4


      From Canada

      A vegetarian activist in HK sent us the link for the eNewsletter of Vegetarians of Alberta (VoA). The Bizarro cartoon on p. 3 of the Autumn 2007 issue is great, and lots of other good stuff. You can read the current and past issues of the VoA newsletter at http://www.vofa.ca/node/181


      International Progress

      Below is the URL for a short video from the Humane Society US featuring some of the victories recorded in 2007. Also, featured in the video is the vegetarian recording artist Moby (http://www.moby.com). These victories still leave us a long, long way to go, but they seem to be steps towards greater concern among humans about what we are inflicting on our fellow animals.



      Two Coffee Table Books

      One of the speakers at last month’s Vege for Health conference in KL was Mohana Gill. In 2006, she published two coffee table books with MPH. The first, ‘Fruitastic: For healthy living, longevity and wellness’ won the World Cookbook Gourmand 2006 awards for Best Single Subject Cookbook and Best Health and Nutrition Cookbook. The sequel is ‘Vegemania: For healthy living, longevity and wellness’.


      ‘Fruitastic’ focuses on the wonderful fruits nature has graciously provided us. As Mohana writes, fruits are “the ultimate natural fast food that comes in a riot of colours and a fiesta of flavours”. The book begins with two-page profiles of many fruits with lots of up-close, mouth-watering photos of our heroes. The majority of the book presents recipes for a wide variety of fruit dishes with photos of the end product to spur our culinary efforts.


      ‘Vegemania’ follows the same successful formula, beginning with colourful profiles of many vegetables before providing a wealth of food preparation ideas from all over the world. The two books are filled with appealing titbits of information, such as that carrots were first grown as medicine, not food, and in Celtic literature the carrot was referred to as the ‘honey underground’. For more information, contact Mohana at mohanagill@...


      Another Forum Page Letter

      The following letter was sent to the ST Forum by Lucy Davis, who is a vegetarian and a local activist on behalf of art, animals and more. To our knowledge, Lucy’s letter has yet to be published by ST.


      Race horses are not “winning bets”.

      I was pained to read in the Sunday Straits Times Nov 25 2007 an article by Alvin Foo in the "New Assets" section entitled “Winning Bet”, espousing the financial returns on race horses.

      I was also shocked to learn that there is no limit to the number of horses that Singaporeans and non-residents can own here.

      With limited land available in Singapore it doesn’t take much imagination to realize that these “investments” can only have a very temporary “lifespan”.

      The article treated the horse as a non-sentient, financial object, to be purchased and discarded once it did not bring in the needed returns.

      However, horses are highly sensitive, intelligent and communicative creatures. Which of course makes for a most advantageous partnership in professional horse racing.

      What it also means is that horses develop significant bonds with the humans around them.

      While they perform well, racehorses are pampered and looked after, but after they begin to lose, or even after a minor injury they are unceremoniously killed.

      The article admits this investment “risk” stating:  “Horror tales abound of horses breaking down moments before the race. Owners may have little choice but to have the horse put down if it breaks a leg for instance. And that ends the investment”.

      The “horror” we are to empathize with here is not the horror of a once coveted companion animal now betrayed by its “owner” and sent to be slaughtered. It is the horror of the investor losing money on what is elsewhere in the article termed a “bad horse”.

      It is ironic that this article came in the same paper where in the Lifestyle section there is an article by Chris Erskine  “Gone Without A Whimper” his devotion for another companion animal—his dying dog Lucky.

      There are of course many cruel, inconsistencies in human relationships with animals, in Singapore and elsewhere. The Sunday Straits Times contained a particularly brutal example.

      Click here for a large list of vegetarian eateries


      Click here to notify us of new places


      Disclaimer: The information provided in this Newsletter is solely for the consideration of the subscribers, and does not constitute an endorsement by VSS.


      Read back issues at: http://www.vegetarian-society.org/newsletter.htm


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