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Opinion :: Ode to The State Fair Butter Cow Battle
· 9:04am August 18th, 2011
From: 2011 State Fair-goer
To: The person or persons who put the "Go vegan" message on the Butter Cow at the State Fair.
Congratulations! Your feat was pretty impressive. As I stood in the Agriculture Building, I wondered how you were able to sneak in, where there was obviously no public access, to find a way to put your message on the sacred cow (pun intended) of Iowa's most famous annual event.
However, I think you should know that by putting a piece of paper with tape on it on the cow carved in butter, you were putting a product from a dead cow on a product from a living cow.
That's right: Your "Go vegan" protest needed products made from animals -- dead animals. So, don't have a cow, over butter, man.
Butter only uses stuff from living cows. Paper, however, is made in part from meat by-products from dead animals in it. Many adhesives, as well.
So the industry that you targeted with your protest actually provided you with the technology to express yourself.
But that's not the only way you used meat by-products during your protest about the use of meat.
If you drove your car -- or even if you are an environmentalist who rode your bike to the State Fair -- meat by-products made that possible, as well. The ball bearings that make your wheels move are made with inedible meat by-products. The rubber in your tires, too, has ingredients from dead animals.
Face it, Dude: Some cow had to die so you could put your buy some paper and some tape, and go to the State Fair to put that protest on the Butter Cow.
You like to say that as a vegan, you don't use meat in any way.
Oh yes, you do. Every day. Lots of ways.
You may not "eat" meat, and there's nothing wrong with that, although the thought of using soy products to replace ice cream seems rather nasty, at least to me. I don't think that "iced dessert made from soybeans, not ice cream" is a very appealing marketing tool.
But according to both the meat producers, and Vegan web sites, just about everything you use every day has some sort of meat by-product in it.
Here are just a few: marshmallows, gelatin, plaster, asphalt, insulation, lubricants, lipstick, hand cream, fireworks, buttons, piano keys, glue, fertilizer (for all of those vegetables you grow to replace meat in your diet), paper, wallpaper, sandpaper, combs, toothbrushes, and even violin strings.
And I haven't even mentioned medical uses, especially insulin. It takes the insulin from the pancreases of 26 cattle to keep one diabetic alive for one year. So if you have any close friends or relatives who are diabetic, you may want to keep that whole "go vegan" thing to yourself.
Whoever you are, you made lots of news this week. People all over the world have heard about you (even though the Des Moines Register refused to publish the name of your group).
And you've even inspired some poems for the 2012 Iowa State Fair.
I never saw a Butter Cow
But I sure hope I see one
So I could make it better now
By making it a vegan
The State Fair's had its Butter Cow
For a hundred and one years
But until the year two-oh-one-one
No one ever shed one tear
Thousands saw the Butter Cow
Just standing there, all frozen
But me, you know, I found a way
For my views to be imposin'
It takes months to carve a butter cow
To form its shape and size
But in just a single minute I
Wrote two words for the wise
I hope you take my words to heart
As you see the butter cow
And the news of my words of art
Has Iowa all aflutter now
I bet at the Fair I made my mark
By how I schemed to barge in
Twenty-twelve is when they'll start
To carve cows out of margarine
The Iowa State Fair: Why we go
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