How about a meatless Thanksgiving?

Next week, President Trump will take a break from watching his impeachment hearings to pardon two turkeys. Every one of us can exercise our own pardon power by choosing a non-violent, cruelty-free Thanksgiving observance.

The 244 million turkeys killed in the U.S. this year were raised in crowded sheds filled with toxic fumes. Their beaks and toes were clipped to prevent stress-induced aggression.

At 16 weeks of age, slaughterhouse workers cut their throats and dumped them into boiling water to remove their feathers.

Consumers pay a heavy price too. Turkey flesh is laced with cholesterol and saturated fats that elevate risk of chronic killer diseases. Intense prolonged cooking is required to destroy deadly pathogens lurking inside.

Now, for the good news. U.S. turkey production is down by a whopping 20 percent from its 1995 high of 293 million, as Americans are reducing their meat consumption. Our supermarkets carry several delicious, healthful, oven-ready plant-based roasts.

This Thanksgiving, let’s give thanks for our good fortune, health, and happiness with a life-affirming, cruelty-free feast of plant-based holiday roast, vegetables, fruits, and grains.

An internet search on “vegetarian Thanksgiving” offers more options and recipes than we could possibly use.

Weaver Johnson

Council Bluffs

The tipping system works

Survey data shows that restaurant servers and customers love the tipping system. Why do most of the Democratic Presidential candidates want to scrap it?

The current approach works well: Servers are legally guaranteed to earn at least the minimum wage with tips included; Census Bureau data shows they report earning twice that or more, thanks to generous tips that follow great service.

Tipped workers have fought against changes to this system, and with good reason. In states that have abandoned the tipped wage system, servers often find themselves replaced with automated alternatives, such as tabletop ordering devices.

A new report from economists at Miami and Trinity Universities finds that restaurants staff fewer tipped workers in these high-cost environments.

Here’s a tip for the politicians supporting a change to this system: The employees don’t want it.

Michael Saltsman,

Employment Policies Institute

Washington D.C.

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