Did you know that eating meat makes you a liar and a sex offender? That’s what you’d be told if you were an 11 or 12-year-old living in India studying for your health exam.
A controversial textbook printed by one of India’s leading publishers, titled New Healthway, was written to teach adolescents about health, hygiene, and sex. That all sounds good on its face, but what does the book actually say?
“The strongest argument that meat is not essential food is the fact that the Creator of this Universe did not include meat in the original diet for Adam and Eve. He gave them fruits, nuts and vegetables,” reads a chapter entitled “Do We Need Flesh Food?”
The chapter goes on to detail the benefits to a vegetarian lifestyle, and some of the tell-tale signs of your classic, chronic meat-eater.
“They easily cheat, tell lies, forget promises, they are dishonest and tell bad words, steal, fight and turn to violence and commit sex crimes,” it says.
The chapter is filled with factual inaccuracies. At one point, it refers to Eskimos as a “lazy, sluggish and short-lived,” people, because (you guessed it) they live on “a diet largely of meat.”
Also: “The Arabs who helped in constructing the Suez Canal lived on wheat and dates and were superior to the beef-fed Englishmen engaged in the same work.”
The good news about this controversial book? A lot of people are criticizing it.
“This is poisonous for children,” Janaki Rajan of the Faculty of Education at Jamia Millia University in Delhi told the BBC. “The government has the power to take action, but they are washing their hands of it,” she said.
It is unknown how many of India’s schools purchased the meat-eater hatin’ book and are using it in the classroom.