Bessie has left the field. She is now property of a lucrative business worth billions of dollars. Her precious milk is no longer allowed to flow to her own children. It is funneled to humans who instinctively stopped drinking their own mother's milk by the time they were toddlers.
The money flows...
To date the dairy industry's most successful marketing tactic is based on fear.
Having us believe that milk is the only or the best place to find calcium is deception. If we also believe that without cheese our bones disintegrate, we belong to them for life. And one generation indoctrinates the next.
Since the first Farm Bill in the 1930's, dairy production has been subsidized. Today this white gold gets dumped into every government service to the poor, from the WIC program to over 30 million children a year in school lunch programs.
The lack of academic curiosity has turned educators into billboards. Posters of children enjoying milk products are hung in doctors' offices and on the walls of every school. Leaflets for 3 Milk-Products-A-Day are elevated to the level of "educational material" and these ads are distributed in health class. Then there is the goose that lays the golden eggs and cheese snacks - the cafeteria.
A change of attitude...
We complain it takes too much time to nourish ourselves with a healthy variety of whole foods. We'd rather pull up to the pump and say fill her up. We claim to have no energy to teach our children nutrition, so instead we let others with a conflict of interests do it for us. Well, as it turns out, our laziness has come home to roost. We are in the midst of a poor health epidemic.
The industry, with a clever understanding of our reductionist proclivity, singles out calcium in order to market their refreshment as indispensable food. We can meet the industry's savvy with our own, but we need to invest some time and energy. To begin with, let us stop believing that all the calcium we need comes from cow's udders. Find the rich variety of nutrients besides enough calcium, in Napa cabbage, collards, kale, bok choy, almonds, and other whole foods. And let's give our bones a reason to get strong - get up, move, exercise!
Today's Bessy stays mostly indoors and gets fed unnatural fodder made of grains and antibiotics, a combination designed to make her grow fat and fast. Oops, could that be what has happened to us?