Body builder, actor and politician Arnold Schwarzenegger goes meatless, undergoes open heart surgery and blames cattle for climate change.

Amanda Radke

April 4, 2018

2 Min Read
Arnold Schwarzenegger drinks the vegan Kool-Aid
Robert Cianflone | Getty Images

“I’m slowly getting off meat, and I can tell you, I feel fantastic,” said Arnold Schwarzenegger in a 2016 interview for, as reported by Tiger Fitness. “If they tell you to eat more meat to be strong, don’t buy it.”

Schwarzenegger is notorious for his California politics, his role in the Terminator movies and his beefed-up body builder physique.

Fast forward two years later, and the 70-year old is currently recovering from open heart surgery. A simple coincidence, the natural transition to old age or a symptom of his Hollywood vegan lifestyle? I’ll let you venture a guess. No matter the cause, I do hope he recovers quickly.

READ: A world without beef is just not sustainable

Apparently, Schwarzenegger’s decision to go meatless isn’t just based on health and wellness; he’s succumbed to the common rhetoric that beef is a huge contributor to greenhouse gases.

According to Breitbart, “Speaking at the United Nations Paris Climate Change Conference, the Terminator star was asked by the BBC whether he would recommend reducing meat consumption to save the environment from greenhouse gases.

“The former Mr. Olympia, who is now a staunch environmentalist, told the outlet 28% of greenhouse gasses are caused by meat production and meat-eating and said people should be willing to cut back. Schwarzenegger said asking people to completely eliminate meat and dairy from their diet would be too drastic, and instead advocated one or two vegetarian or vegan days a week.”

Additionally, Schwarzenegger told The Guardian, “It drives me crazy when people talk about 30 years from now, rising sea levels and so on. What about right now? Thousands of people are dying from pollution. People are living with cancer [because of air pollution].”

READ: How the Washington Post got it wrong on cow burps and greenhouse gases

In response to this hysteria, I have many questions for the Terminator, as well as Robert Redford and Leo DiCaprio who joined him in Paris for the conference: Why is it so easy to blame cattle? Have you ever seen smog over a cattle ranch? Per calorie of nutrition, how sustainable are legumes, peanut butter, tofu, lentils and broccoli? What about urban pollution? Electricity for our houses, gas for our cars, consumer goods delivered to our door from Amazon — do these not have an environmental impact? How did you get to Paris? Commercial flight or private jet?

I can appreciate that these Hollywood A-listers are speaking out on issues that are most important to them; however, the information these elitists spew is biased, inaccurate and sensational. Common sense needs to win out over dramatizations and romanticized ideologies, yet, common sense seems to be in short supply these days. The industry has a lot of work to do; we better get to it.

The opinions of Amanda Radke are not necessarily those of or Farm Progress.

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