Alternative Titles: You’re A Murderous, Lying Hypocrite If You Waste Food or Finish your food, jerk. Written when I was mad–can’t you tell? = P Love you. <3
Did you know if food waste were a country, it would be the THIRD LARGEST CARBON POLLUTER ON THE PLANET?
Most Americans roll their eyes at this food waste thing, but hang with me here. I need to talk to you. If you’re an average American, you waste or throw away 33 percent of the meat, 20 percent of the veggies, 35 percent of the fish, 15 percent of the fruit, and 17 percent of the dairy products you buy, unless you’ve changed a lot since 2011.(1) “It doesn’t help all those starving Africans if I get fat,” you smirk at your mother’s old quips as you dump two-thirds of your salad into the trash. No harm in food waste–you donate to charity, smile at homeless guys, etc, so what’s one little half-burger? It’s not like you can send it to the Ethiopians.
Your food waste is destroying the world.
Liberals, Dems, left-leaning buddies, do you believe in global warming? (Right-wingers, skip ahead) Did you know that food leftovers are the single largest component of the waste stream by weight in the US, according to the EPA, and the landfills they create account for 34 percent of our methane emissions? Did you know methane’s 21 times worse for the environment than carbon dioxide? So do you enjoy causing planetary disaster when you throw out your food, or do you actually not believe in global warming at all? I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen supposedly pro-environment Democrats tossing food. You make me sick.
Right-wingers, my darling conservative hearts, do you really believe government spending hurts the economy? Truly? Whether you know it or not, that idea survived through the 20th century through the Austrian School of Economics. Hayek, its father, advocated keeping government out of the economy and limiting government spending–and showed that irresponsible personal spending and credit usage in all sectors destroys the economy and sends inflation up. That’s all you. Your irresponsible food waste costs you, even supposing a low average of $1 of food wasted per meal, $65,700 over the course of your sixty years. You’re literally tossing that money into government repositories: when the government-sponsored garbage truck drags your food waste away, they’re taking what–the price of a car? Your kid’s college? And what does the government do with that money you’ve literally tossed away? Charge you more money in taxes to haul it away. How dare you say you’re against government spending while you siphon resources away from the private sector. Put your money–your food–where your mouth is.
“Okay, so the solution is to buy smaller portions,” you say. “Still doesn’t hurt if I trash this–“
No, I’m not just saying “buy less.” I’m saying save that half-burger. If you bought it, eat it. Share it if you can’t finish. If no one wants it, box it; eat it when you get the munchies next, instead of buying a whole new meal you’ll just waste. Save your food so you can save you money so you can give to poor people.
“How dare you tell me to give money to poor people!”
How dare I indeed. If you’re a good big-government liberal, you love making people give to the poor all the time, so shut up and fork up. The $165 billion dollars of food you’ve helped waste this year could all have gone to government welfare. Even if you wasted 15 percent less we could feed 25 million people. You’re worse than a sequester.
And you, good Conservative Christian, with that tithe and private sector charity–Ephesians 4:28 says: “Let him labor, doing honest work with his hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.” That’s way more than a tithe: that’s saying the entire reason for you to earn money is so you can share with someone in need. Every dollar of food a Bible-believing Christian throws out–every excess cent you don’t need–belonged to the poor. No one’s saying it’s wrong to have your own financial plans–nice house, car, whatever–but if you’re wasting food, you’re robbing the poor and you’re robbing God. Read the Bible’s Amos, Haggai, and Micah to see what happened to God’s people when they did that; Jesus even told people not to follow him if they didn’t plan on giving up everything. (Mark 10:17, Mark 12:41, Matthew 8:20)
If you’re neither a big-government liberal or a Conservative Christian, think in your own self-interest. Save your money so you can buy cool stuff! Give to the poor so you can feel happy! Stop helping bacteria breed faster by giving them more landfill habitat! Increased food and habitat increases bacterial proliferation, increasing mutations and better adapting bacteria for disease. Composting takes time, and meanwhile you’re occupying landfill space we need for more hazardous materials. Food-waster, you’re incurring disease, poverty, and my wrath: please save that sandwich!
1. The Journal of Consumer Affairs ( Buzby et. al The Value of Retail- and Consumer-Level Fruit and Vegetable Losses in the United States. Journal of Consumer Affairs, Fall 2011)
Austrian School of Economics
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version