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You know how sometimes someone says something so outrageous, so out-of-proportion with what’s actually going on, that you just have to respond?
That’s how we felt seeing NZ First MP Shane Jones’ bizarre tirade about New Zealand’s new climate change teaching resources. His reason for the rant? The resources mention reducing meat and dairy as one way to take action on climate. Jones vehemently doesn’t want the “politically correct brigade colonising my dietary habits.” 🙄
Here’s what we sent him in response.
“Is Shane Jonesing from lack of meat pasties?
A little worried about your blood pressure mate.
Calling environmental activists “medieval torture chamber workers” hellbent on “preaching this gospel of absolutism”, sounds like someone right on the edge.
Heck Jonesy, take a chill pill. Or some warfarin or something.
No-one’s torturing meat eaters or brainwashing anyone’s children.
When it comes to the school climate change resources, all they’re doing is putting a few accepted facts about the connection between meat, dairy production and climate change into some teaching programme, dude.
They’re suggesting people could eat a bit less animal to help stop catastrophic climate change.
No-one’s asking you to get down on your knees and worship the lentil.
Oh and just to ease your mind, we’re not sending out crack teams of Greenpeace climbers to abseil in and steal the chops off your barbie.
Nor are we preparing vegan ninjas to sneak into your open bedroom window at night to force chickpeas up your nostrils.
We understand that you and Winnie were pretty pissed after Jacinda banned those little meat savouries from the cabinet meetings, but no need to take it so personally.
Is it the meat withdrawal talking? Feeling ‘mangry’? Does that explain the outbursts?
Sorry no, that’s probably our imagination running away with us, not much else to do but fantasise about cabinet meetings in these medieval torture chambers.
The real reason behind your hysterical hyperbole is probably more mundane.
It’s election year, and the populist playbook demands the creation of phantom enemies (in black hoods with thumbscrews) to scare your electorate, so that you can be the knight who ‘vanquishes’ them.
We have no desire Shane to “colonise your dietary habits” or invade your dinner table.
No-one’s forcing you to eat or not eat anything. That’s your own business.
We are all facing a planetary disaster. How everyone chooses to react to that reality is up to them.
The fact is that livestock production accounts for 14.5 per cent of greenhouse gases worldwide. In this country, agriculture makes up 48 per cent of New Zealand’s emissions.
There is a vast difference between being informed about the connection between meat, dairy and the environment – and being tied down and force fed mung bean patties.
If your doctor was to offer a suggestion that eating less meat might be good for your health, would you turn on them like a rabid bear and and accuse them of being a biological “bible basher”.
More important than our personal habits, eating and otherwise, are the destructive habits of corporations and Governments.
Seeing you’re in Government, rather than hearing more about what you plan to eat, it would be nice to know what legislative plans you have for getting industry, particularly agriculture, to start drastically lowering its emissions.
That’d be good for everyone’s blood pressure levels.
Your friends at Greenpeace.
Newshub kindly delivered our letter to Shane – and it even elicited a bit of a giggle from him.
Teaching kids to do what we can to reduce carbon emissions really isn’t a big deal (and besides, Shane Jones is well past primary school, so we’re not quite sure what he’s so worried about).