Eutychus and His Kin: Gastronomic Preferences

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Recently United Methodist leaders resolved that “sexual preferences” (such as homosexuality) should no longer be a bar to admission to the (Methodist) ministry. Predictably, there were loud objections raised to this decision, particularly by those concerned about the morality taught by the Bible, the decline and fall of Western civilization, and related matters. It is not our place here to quarrel with such objectors, except to point out that if they suppose they will be able to influence the decisions of any major denominational body with concerns of this nature, they may be overly naïve.

In any event, it is not really our task in this column to look to the past; our eyes are on the future. (Those interested in the past may find that the Methodist demarche goes far toward recovering some of the Canaanite and classical pagan strands of America’s multi-faceted religious heritage.)

What really concerns us more is the way in which these administrators, in their zeal to end some traditional forms of discrimination, have crudely and harshly overlooked one of the oldest and at the same time most oppressed alternative life-styles. We are referring to those who have “unconventional” preferences as to what (or whom) they consider edible (gastronomically qualified). Heavily value-laden words such as “cannibalism” have served to prejudice people against the long-standing custom of recycling edible human portions. Serious consideration of viable options has been shifted.

It is well known to many animals, not only to man, that the human organism, particularly if well fed, is highly nutritious. In an age of burgeoning population pressures and increasing stringency of non-human meat supplies, ...

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