Tonawanda News

September 25, 2013

CONFER: Bugs: They're what's for dinner

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The Tonawanda News

Tonawanda News — This summer featured an explosion in the cicada population across the Northeast. You couldn’t help but notice as the trees were alive with their incessant mating calls.

Upon hearing that ringing tone, how many of you salivated like Pavlov’s dog, hungering for a dishful of the little buggers?

I hope that none of you did. But, if the United Nations had its way, everyone would.

Earlier this year, its Food and Agriculture Organization issued a report that said insects are the perfect meal — the answer to both world hunger and environmental sustainability. According to the report, some 2 billion people already eat insects as a part of their diet (either whole or in the form of paste or filler) and there are 1,900 species worldwide that could be classified as edible. The study spent many pages expounding on the virtues of ingesting caterpillars, ants and grasshoppers.

The writers had a special affinity for mealworms, going so far as to make their nutritional value greater than that of beef, citing only marginal differences in protein levels, but less bad fats and more vitamins and minerals. According to the UN’s scientists, the mealworm’s Omega-3s and other critical fatty acids are comparable to those of fish.

The UN indicated that insects are the very best protein source when it comes to environmental impact. They create fewer greenhouse gases, use less land than cattle, eat fewer plants and consume less water than mammals and can be reared on human and animal waste.

Eating a meal that was birthed in, nourished by and collected from human fecal matter is none too attractive to the civilized world. The UN recognizes that “consumer disgust” is an issue, so they started advertising the joys of eating bugs after the report was issued and began a detailed propaganda campaign to influence policy-makers and thought leaders (universities) around the globe.

The UN in its air of superiority failed to note that insects aren’t popular in the Western world because we’ve grown beyond them. There’s a reason that most of the mass insect consumption occurs in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Those are all undeveloped, underdeveloped and emerging economies and regions. The Third World and Second World dwellers don’t want to eat creepy crawlies, but they have no choice.

Insects shouldn’t be the desired result of a modern society. The goal of mankind should be to strive for things better, to advance in every generation, and move beyond the animalistic chains of survival that kept our simpler predecessors of centuries ago wondering how they would live to see the next day (whereas we wonder if we will live to see our great-grandchildren). Bugs hearken to a by-gone era and a poor, starved people. No one wants to return to those days.

But that, obviously, is what the UN wants. They don’t want a nation or a people as superior as the United States of America. They want the best to come down to the least so everyone is equal and no man accumulates more wealth or consumes more resources than any other on the planet. They would like a world full of Zimbabwes where people strive to maintain an existence, rather than the world we have where people strive to attain the riches of America where even the poor live like kings.

Their war against us is subtle and incremental. If you see fried locusts on the McDonald’s menu in the next 20 years, you can count the UN as winning it.

Gasport resident Bob Confer also writes for the New American magazine at TheNewAmerican.com. Follow him on Twitter @bobconfer