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Some habits are hard to digest

September 13, 2007

Your coverage of "Extreme Dining" [Sept. 6] featuring the practice of eating octopus alive was disturbing to read. A truly compassionate society would not revel in such treatment of fellow living creatures. Eating octopus alive is no more acceptable than executing dogs.

For the record, octopuses are highly intelligent, have personalities, get bored in captivity, use tools, solve problems, learn and retain knowledge, and care for their eggs for months.

Abuse of such a wonderful creature is wholly unnecessary and without justification.

Such cruel acts should be condemned. A more appropriate focus of the story should have been as a call to action to stop such behavior. I hope the next in-depth food issue will cover "Compassionate Dining."

Laura Hunter



I read your article with interest -- as well as a certain amount of the intended disgust. I have a tidbit to add. Did you know that certain types of locust can be considered kosher under certain circumstances? If you did not know this, you're not alone. I've run this yummy morsel by several scholarly types, and they told me that my source (my 14-year-old stepdaughter, Sarah Schiff) was nuts. Well, it's right there in Parshat Shmini.

I am not anxious for this info to get out! I really don't want to see gefilte locust on my local kosher eatery's menu.

Sheila Linderman

West Hills


You forgot the part about the Donner Party? 'Nuff said.

Grace Hampton


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