Food Is the New Legalism

If you have not heard about the scuffle between Travel Channel bad boy, Anthony Bourdain and Food Network darling, Paula Deen then go here and here.

Bourdain takes on Paula Deen’s association with “evil corporations” and her unhealthy recipes.

I’ve been a fan of Bourdain for years and have seen almost every episode of No Reservations. Paula Deen got old very quickly for me and I have not watched an episode of hers in years, partly because we don’t cable but even when given the opportunity, we will look for something else.

But see, here is the problem…Bourdain’s show is not on public access and his show is replete with him eating lots of fatty, high calorie foods.

For Bourdain to blast evil corporations is hilarious. His show is on The Travel Channel and his publisher is an imprint of Harper Collins. Healthy food?

He is famous for his love of tubed meat.

But this is the way of legalism. And for some reason, a new legalism has begun to surround the food we eat. We now look down on others because of where they eat (local v. corporate), what they eat (organic and free range v. everything else) and even how it was prepared. And we puff ourselves up because we can afford to make the choices to eat differently.

Every legalist is a snob looking down the nose at those who know less and do less. Because the less-enlightened didn’t watch the documentary the legalist watched they are looked down on.

We all do it.

But eventually the legalist will move on to something else because it really is not about food so much as pride and control. All of us, Christians and non-Christians have these hearts that just make up rules for people to follow. It would be bad enough if we only beat ourselves up with these laws but we don’t. We are not satisfied until others are moved to take on these laws and made to be as miserable as ourselves.

Related Post: Thomas Merton and “This Cult of Foods”

2 thoughts on “Food Is the New Legalism

  1. janetstephens August 20, 2011 / 2:54 pm

    Just goes to show you can make a law out of anything, even something as wonderful as food. Wish we could just enjoy our freedom in Christ more!

  2. melissa August 21, 2011 / 5:32 pm

    That Anthony Bourdain. Sheesh. Anyway, I wanted to say that what you've written here has convicted me. It is easy to jump on a bandwagon, even one with good intentions, and lose sight of the fact that its really just your preference, when it comes down to it. Choice really is a luxury, and I need to remember that. I would also add, one of the reasons that I do like the "eat local" emphasis is that I like supporting the community I live in and like seeing chefs/owners of small restaurants succeed.

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