Have spent the day knitting lace swatches. The excitement is overwhelming. (In fact, it's a nice vacation, with other people to keep The Baby from trashing the house or eating glass tree ornaments.) I may yet pull off getting everything done in time to meet the deadline on this article.
I'm already considering a topic for ANOTHER article. I need opinions. That means youse guys.
It turns out that PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals - they are an extremist group who throw blood on people wearing fur coats and other lovely 'protests' masquerading as assaults) is boycotting the Australian wool industry over cruelty to sheep. Having grown up in farm country myself, you can imagine my opinion of all this. (I dislike a great deal of animal testing and feel that true animal abusers should be jailed. But getting mad at people who shave animals THAT ARE KEPT ALIVE TO BE SHAVED is totally stupid. Let's go harass the people who kill race horses for insurance money, hmm?)
I have heard a great deal of 'vegan knitting' talk on the internet over the years. You know; don't knit with silk because it's mean to worms (??), don't knit with wool because it's mean to sheep, that kind of thing. For some reason they seem totally ignorant of where plant products come from in their quest to knit 'kindly'.
So what do they knit with? Synthetics made out of petroleum products that will not rot for the next ten thousand years, or cotton, which is one of the worst crops IN THE WORLD in terms of soil depletion and pesticide use. Screw the planet's environment; just save the small furry animals (where do they think the small furry animals will live once the environment crashes? Mars?) Of course, power is used when processing any fiber, which is derived from petroleum, one way or another, unless you're using hand-spun organic plant material.
I'm thinking of an article about what cotton does to soil, or where acrylic comes from. I know I'll infuriate every 'vegan knitter' out there. The question is, do I want flamed, and will Knitty even accept it? (I think yes, if I stick to facts and don't get rude about it.) Should I? Do I dare?
Please keep in mind, this is not about people who refuse to knit with wool because they're allergic, or don't like it, or can't afford it, or live in a warm climate... whatever. Those are valid reasons. (Personally, I plan to never touch mohair again, simply because I HATE IT.) I'm talking about the people arguing from ignorance, who want to go hug a sheep while knitting with a fiber (cotton) that causes major economic hardship, destroys soil, and consumes more pesticides per acre than any other commercially grown crop.
It's sure tempting.