DBTV Interview: Jeff Corwin

I recently interviewed Jeff Corwin, wildlife conservationist and television host/producer, about some environmental issues. We discussed everything from palm oil plantations to endangered species, extinction, and his breathtaking documentary: 100 Heartbeats for MSNBC. (Special thanks to Joelle Katcher, for shooting the interview!)

While I respect the amazing work he does educating people about wildlife conservation, I do wish Corwin had stuck to his vegetarianism due to meat production’s connection to deforestation, global warming, air and water pollution and worse. When asked about his stance on being veg at a talk documented on Youtube, he avoided any of the facts, and fell into personal defensiveness, evoking the cliche rationalization,  “if lions can do it so can we…and I am hungry“.  C’mon, Jeff! You don’t see lions making gazelle factory farms. They kill for survival. We torture for the taste. You are smart enough to see the difference. At least acknowledge that meat production is a huge environmental disaster and one of the most powerful things we can easily give up to help the environment.

Regardless, Jeff is pretty awesome, and his mission to educate people about endangered species and the current extinction event we are causing is so critical to the future of the planet and our survival as a species. So watch the trailer for 100 Heartbeats:

Written by joshuakatcher

Joshua Katcher is an adjunct professor of fashion at Parsons The New School. His research focuses on sustainability and ethics in fashion production. He started The Discerning Brute in 2008 as a resource for men who want to make intelligent decisions concerning their lifestyles. With a focus on “fashion, food & etiquette for the ethically handsome man”, The Discerning Brute produces expert, essential content and boldly takes a stand. Brave GentleMan, the integrated, eCommerce brother-site of The Discerning Brute was launched in 2011 and features “principled attire” and “smart supplies” handpicked for informed indulgence.
The Discerning Brute on Facebook

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
You can leave a response, or create a trackback from your own site.

  • Pingback: The Discerning Brute » Blog Archive » DBTV: Red Carpet, 24th Annual Genesis Awards()

  • Pingback: Wildlife Conservationist And Television Host/Producer Jeff Corwin Talks Rainforest « ecorazzi.com :: the latest in green gossip()

  • lttt

    “They kill for survival. We torture for the taste. You are smart enough to see the difference.” — love these lines.

    one comment that kinda irked me was when he mentioned sitting down with his daughter watching species that may not be there when she’s an adult. she looks at her dad, a biologist, and asks “why didn’t you save them?”

    forget all that palm oil stuff…that stuff is teeny tiny scale compared to the devastation of factory farming the degradation of human morality. the planet and humanity are teetering the brink of disaster, largely due to meat raising. what will he say when she looks at him, the dad, and asks “why didn’t you save ME?”

  • Skeletondog

    Aw, now that’s a shame – I hate seeing an ex-vegetarian.

    I’ve noticed that the excuses meat eaters favor are often related to their own personality – animal lovers and ex-vegetarians tend to favor the argument “other animals eat animals, therefore I, as an animal, should feel free to do so.”

    As you noted, it’s a very shallow argument. Other animals kill because they need to, not because it tastes good, which is the only reason to eat meat when a sufficient supply of plant-based food is available and affordable. They don’t have the choice to be vegetarian, nor do most probably have the capacity to understand what it means to kill other species. We have the choice, and the ability to understand what it is to kill another animal. We’re not lions or falcons or any such creature – we’re the unique and very, very lucky creature that is humankind!

    Excuses, excuses! I do like Mr. Corwin, though.
    Interesting blog you got here. :)

    • Stephen

      Other animals that kill other animals are importantly DESIGNED as carnivores. Humans are NOT carnivores. We are vegan and largely eat fruits and vegetables. That is how we are DESIGNED – something that is way beyond “choice” and other funny modern entitlements. This is something that very few vegans and animal rights activists (I count myself as both, by the way) rarely think of, but it is the fundamental reason why animals (us included) do what we do or should do.