djcliche (djcliche) wrote,

No More Garlic?

I was in a convenient store the other day, getting some food for Gizmo, my cat. They had a TV on in the store, and a news channel was on, discussing a recent controversy in Italy about the possibility of banning garlic.
The whole thing was started by some Italian celebrities who not only hate the smell of garlic, but who also feel that using garlic is a sign of being lower class.

an NPR article i just read about it quotes a famous Italian chef Filippo La Mantia as saying that "garlic is a leftover from when Italians were poor and used it to flavor their meager victuals." He also said that "the average standard of living is high enough today that people can do without it."

The news station that was on in the convenient store was an American news station, and they were discussing the idea of trying to make a similar ban in America.

This made me very pissed off. I can at least understand from a health perspective, why people would ban trans fats like they have in New York and are trying to in Brookline Mass and other places, as it is not an actual food and it is absolutely horrible for you. Although i tend to believe people should be able to make their own decisions about what they choose to put in their bodies, whether it be garlic, trans fats, heroin, cigarettes, weed, etc.
However, until people are honestly educated about the effects of these things, personal choice isn't always ideal... like, we are taught growing up that ALL DRUGS ARE BAD. SAY NO TO DRUGS.
Unfortunately, this blanket statement muddies up the truth. Like, weed is a HELL of a lot better for you than crack, but when we are taught "all drugs are bad, don't do them", if we try weed and like it, or we have parents who smoke weed or whatever, we aren't honestly educated enough to know that weed might make us lazy, but crack will ruin your life.

This is similar in the case of "abstinence only" education. If all we are taugh is "wait until marraige or you will go to hell" but are not given an honest, actual sex eucation, the people who chose to have sex anyway, will not know that "safe sex" is a way to help prevent diseases and pregnancy, and are therefore a lot more likely to catch diseases or become pregnant.

And back to the garlic situation. Garlic may make one's breath stink, but so do cigarettes, not brushing your teeth, asparagus, curry, etc. Not to mention the fact that garlic is INCREDIBLY good for you.

Lastly, a quote from the NPR article:
"Indeed, garlic does carry a stigma' says Anna Maria Tozzi, owner of Rome's Montevecchio restaurant. She says the herb should be used in moderation, despite its odiferous aftereffects.
"There are lots of prejudices that people who eat and smell of garlic are second class, backward, unsophisticated," Tozzi says. "It's a class thing for many people."

Is prejudice a good reason to ban a delicious aphrodisiac food that is healthy and good for you?

This is not the first time prejudice has taken away our right to chose what we do or what we put into our body, and sadly, it will not be the last. in fact, if anything, i fear that government will start to ban anything and everything they want, until only the upper class can survive.
Tags: choice, class, food, garlic, isms, preudice, weed
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