We owe the genius of Shakespeare to the ancient institution of BBQ.
The story goes something like this: a large digestive tract is expensive tissue, and in evolutionary terms, if we can reduce the size of the digestive tract, we can enlarge the size of other expensive tissue (in the case of human ancestors, enlarging the brain). Dr. Michael Eades has a fairly extensive blog post that describes this in more detail, but suffice it to say, the act of switching to more meat in our diets was the first step in evolving bigger brains.
It gets even better! Primatologist Richard Wrangham discovered something even more helpful to our evolutionary path to big brains – barbecue. While the scientific evidence proves eating meat is good, there’s now proof that barbecuing it makes it even better! The wonderful act of oxidation helps make even the roughest cut of meat into something more digestible, giving our bodies more energy for building bigger brains. Without this evolutionary leap, the geniuses of Mozart, Shakespeare, Douglas Adams and yea, even Stephen Hawking, would have been just another bunch of vegetarian mountain gorillas.
I believe that this research is an affirmation of what we all know is true: meat eating is a righteous and praiseworthy activity. Much of the strife in this world is caused by lack of good barbecue, as clearly evidenced by the conflicts in the middle east, where Jews and Muslims are busy killing each other instead of munching on nice racks of baby back ribs or juicy shrimp kabobs. Lord knows, without a secure source of bacon in people’s diets, they’re more prone to building settlements in occupied territories, or strapping on suicide bomb vests. Vegan terrorists, attacking university labs, clearly can only be mollified if force fed a healthy diet of bacon and eggs. Not to mention two great-grand-daddies of all genocidal vegetarian maniacs, Adolf Hitler and Pol Pot.
If we want to avoid the horrors genocidal vegetarian maniacs and pork and shrimp deprived radicals, we need to start at home. Eat some bacon. Fry up some burgers. Broil a few choice cut filets. Sneak some bacon drippings into your vegetarian friend’s green beans. Slip some shrimp bits into the gefilte fish at your next seder. After all, my dear friends, it is only through the embracing of our inner pyromaniac carnivore can we keep our big brains and secure world peace.