My passion for a healthy diet is about as passionate as my atheism, and yet, I’ve barely written of it here.

There is a specific issue I wish to address, and perhaps you faithful readers can offer your opinions on the matter.

First of all, I should say that I am a vegan – no meat, dairy, poultry, fish, eggs. I also do not eat any simple sugars – cane sugar, honey, molasses, maple syrup, etc. etc. (Read Sugar Blues by William Dufty.) No, I don’t listen to Victory Records bands or wear Earth Crisis or PETA hoodies. My philosophy is: I eat what I’m willing to kill. I am willing to pluck a carrot from the ground; I am unwilling to pluck a chicken.

My dilemma, however, is this: I buy organic exclusively. Yes, it does cost more – but I feel that it’s worth it to know that I’m not eating pesticides. I also strongly believe in buying, for example, an organic broccoli from the grocery store, which was trucked to that store from California (I live in New England) rather than buying a “conventionally” grown (sprayed) broccoli from the farm stand down the street.

I’ve taken hell for this from some environmentalists, who say my support of organic farming is actually harming the planet, due to long distances over which the handful of large organic farms need to ship their produce.

I say this: if I continue to support organic farming as fervently as I do and have, and as long as I remain vocal to the local farm stand about my feelings (“you know, if you didn’t spray your food, I’d buy my groceries here”), then demand will only increase for organic foods. And I also say that if I don’t take the best care of my own self – which, in my opinion, includes eating organic foods – then I won’t be able to live a long and healthy life, and that’s gotta count for something.

What d’y’all think?