Meat | Jim Steel


Meat

by Jim Steel | March 26, 2024

“My history teacher told me today that lifting weights and eating
as much meat and protein as I do is bad for me. He said that it will
ruin my kidneys and that I am going to cripple myself,” 15-year-old
Bobby said to his Uncle Randy as they drank a post-workout shake
outside of their hometown gym, “Mongo’s Strength and Fighting.”

“Is he the one that
doesn’t eat meat and that paints his nails and says he likes heavy
metal music but doesn’t know who Pantera is?” Randy asked.

“That’s the one,”
Bobby answered.

“You mean the same
guy that says that white people have never contributed anything to
society and that the world would be better off without straight white
men on the earth, even though he’s a straight white man?”

“Yessir,” Bobby
answered.

Randy laughed. “You
told me about him before. What’s he weigh and how big is he?”

“Oh, he’s about 6’0″,
155 pounds,” Bobby said.

“Massive. Was he ever
an athlete, and has he ever lifted any weights before?”

“I doubt it. He says
that the football players in his high school used to pick on him
because he was so skinny and wasn’t an athlete,” Bobby said.

“How’s he treating
you, the football player?” Randy asked.

“Like crap. He’s
always making smart remarks to me, insinuating that me and the other
football players in class are dumb, and talking like football and
sports in general is useless. He saw the pound and a half of ground
beef that I had for lunch one day and he said that people that eat
meat are contributing to murder. I don’t say anything back to him.”

Randy smiled, “First
off, I’m proud of you for not talking back to him. That takes a lot
of restraint on your part. And between you and me, I’m proud of you
for not kicking his little ass for being like that. How come you’ve
been so cool about it?”

“No offense, Uncle
Randy, but I can’t believe that you don’t know,” Bobby
answered.

“Know what?”

“Consider the
source,” Bobby said, “that’s what you always told me to do.”

“Damned if I didn’t,”
Randy said, “Now I’m even more proud of you. You are turning into
quite a young man. Okay,” Randy continued, “we know he’s an
idiot, but let me tell you why he’s an idiot.”

“First off, let’s
look at his statements regarding meat and protein simply, with common
sense. What did our ancestors eat
for at least 2,000,000 years? Meat, that’s what they ate.
Fat and protein. They never would have survived without it. Have you
ever seen how a vegan looks? A Saber Toothed Tiger would have a vegan
for lunch every day. The no-muscle-and-strength thing probably didn’t
bode well for the survivability of a vegan caveman. I guarantee that
they didn’t have any qualms about the morality of eating meat back
then. They treasured it, just like the few Hunter Gatherer tribes do
today. Meat is still a cause for celebration. Eating anything other
than meat was when they couldn’t find meat, or as a side dish, like
tubers and fruits.”

“It would be tough to
play football and lift weights eating lettuce and carrots, “
Bobby said.

“It sure would,”
Randy said. “Meat gave us bigger brains, enabling high-level
decision making, and simply made us smarter. And there hasn’t been
any research studies that I am aware of that show that protein is bad
for you in any way, shape, or form.”

“I figured that,”
Bobby said. “Then what is the history teacher talking about?”

“Well, it seems like
a moral issue from what he said to you. Maybe he watched too many
Disney movies where animals were talking and smiling and acting
human. Or maybe he doesn’t know about the fact that a whole mess of
animals are killed in farming the fields. Maybe he associates meat
with getting his ass kicked when he was younger. Who knows? He’s
wrong and that’s all there is to it.”

“What about the
crippling effects of weight training?” Bobby asked.

“On the contrary,”
Randy answered. “Bone density and grip strength are strong
predictors of longevity. Both you acquire from weight training. And
like I have always asked people, ‘When in life is it better to be
weak than strong?’ Of course you can cripple yourself using shitty
form, but not with proper technique and programming. I’ll tell you
another thing; weight training gives you independence. You don’t need
to ask anybody to help you do anything that’s physical. When you
are 80 you can still carry your groceries to the car with no help.
That may seem silly, but not to an 80-year-old, with 80-year-old
friends. Weight training really is the fountain of youth.”

Randy continued, “And
how about this, just from what you know from reading all of your
dad’s old muscle magazines and watching the biggest and strongest
people in the world on YouTube, what did they do to get that way?

“They ate meat and
lifted weights?”

“Right, said Randy.
“Remember that video I showed you the other day of Arnold and his
buddies back in 1975, and what they were eating when they went out to
lunch?”

“I sure do,” Bobby
answered. “It was a bunch of rare ground beef, steak and eggs.”

Randy said, “They
knew that to survive those twice a day, six days a week training days
that they were doing, they needed plenty of protein to recover. Even if you aren’t competing in Mr. Olympia, your body needs and
thrives on meat.”

“And weight
training,” Bobby said.

“Right,” Randy
said, “And lifting with barbells is the best for you. I’m not
saying you can never use machines or dumbbells or even kettlebells.
But the quickest way to get as strong as you can get and do it the
safest is with a barbell; heavy as you can with good form. Do that
and you can stay strong for a long time.”

“So should I say
anything to my History teacher?” Bobby asked.

“Yeah, tell him that
when the shit really hits the fan, that he will run to the meat
eaters and weight lifters for protection,” Randy said.

“Really?” Bobby
asked. “You want me to say that to him?”

“No, I don’t. But
it would be fun to see the look on his face when you said it to him,”
Randy said, smiling. “Just let it go. You know what’s right.
Maybe one day, he’ll come to his senses, but I doubt it.”

“Especially if he
doesn’t know who Pantera is,” Bobby said.


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