Friday, April 26, 2024
European Union

Worms will free us all


The mechanisms for pressuring and forcing people to do things they don’t want to do remain the same

Piotr Semka

My missionary friends always praised the worms, so when I saw a scramble that we were now going to eat them, I ran to the store. And to no avail. They were not there. And seriously, after all, no one is forcing us to eat them. It’s an agreement to distribute, not a compulsion to eat,” Tomasz Terlikowski [a renown Polish journalist, Ed.] jokes about the European Commission’s approval of insect flour. And indeed today, when it is still something curious found among the many other announcements from Brussels officials, one can joke about the foreboding of right-wingers, who have found another topic to add to their EU conspiracy scare. And I must shyly confess that somehow, I understand this oversensitivity. Because people are observing social phenomena, they know history, especially in our part of the world, and they can figure out how certain processes work.

If someone had argued as recently as 40 years ago that in professional sports biological men claiming to be women would compete and win against biological women, many would have said that this was an impossible vision. The phenomenon of pushing through what has been called “LGBT rights in the most diverse spheres of social activity” shows that such changes are just a matter of appropriate social engineering. Especially since, as pointed out by a random individual who took up the polemic with Terlikowski, it is likely that the food package will not indicate in giant letters that it contains a batch of cricket flour, but there will be an enigmatic description: “protein of other origin – 6%” or something like that.

The recently revealed recommendations of a body of climate-sensitive cities for the future propose that each person should be allowed to consume 6 kilos of meat a year, buy 8 pieces of clothing and take one airplane trip every two years. Today, Civic Platform politicians, who feel the drastic nature of such proposals, are trying to turn it into a joke. But already Ms. Sylwia Spurek is saying straightforwardly: going 100% vegan is mandatory, and the livestock sector must be consigned to history books. And she scoffs at the hesitation of some Civic Platform politicians, thundering: “The populists have launched a panic-stricken attack, and the opposition does not have the courage to admit that without these measures we will not stop the climate catastrophe.” Who is more likely to push their case in this dispute? Ms. Spurek or the conservative politicians from the Civic Platform? After all, the militant MEP can point out that the Platform once also shied away from supporting abortion on demand, but now unanimously supports this proposal.

Now let’s take the example of the European Commission. If, for example, in five or seven years mandatory quotas for the addition of cricket flour to various types of baked goods are pushed through, after all, using the example of Brussels’ current dispute with the Polish government, we can imagine blocking the payment of EU quotas to countries that will shy away from the mandatory batch of worm flour. This is about a certain mechanism for imposing social change, which can be extremely effective. And whether it will concern either the forced distribution of migrant quotas or the dispute over the Polish Supreme Court or, finally, cricket flour, is only a matter of current policy. The mechanisms for pressuring and forcing people to do things they don’t want to do remain the same. And one can always imagine the next pope, such as Francis II, explaining that acceptance of cricket flour is evidence of a Christian understanding of the challenges of ecology.

This article was published in February 2023 in “Do Rzeczy” magazine.