I was posting this for information, not really to debate...hopefully if there are vegetarians suffering from too much copper, they will find a way to correct that.
I don't begrudge people their choice in diet. I would go further, though, and state that what people do to their children is their business, not mine - as much as it would pain me to stick by that at times. If a couple wants to abuse their child through veganism, I don't want the state to get involved. As a neighbor, I might speak my mind to the couple, but that's social pressure and the desire to educate. I don't want to punish them. Same thing if they were drugging their kids, abusing them in some other way...
I say this because my problem with vegetarians, vegans, etc. is when one insists that the planet is better off if we stop eating meat, and that we should be forced to stop eating meat. There's plenty of evidence all around that there are people who find the path to wellness via animal foods. To use the state to interfere in people's lives and tell them to only eat plants for the good of the planet has no basis in reality.
"I believe that many, if not all, of the points the author discussed could be easily be fixed with a vegetarian diet. One of the problems, of course, with the vegetarian diet is the hideous quality of American soil. How can anyone have proper zinc balance from a veggie foods since zinc is not regularly added back to the soil?"
I would love for anyone to grow their own food in soil enriched with zinc. From what I understand, though, part of the most ecologically sound way to turn starving soil into rich soil, in addition to mineral supplementation, is to use animals and their by-products. Anyone who can turn out nutrient-rich plant foods on their soil and subsist on that is awesome...anyone who can furthermore produce that without animal products (or nothing higher than an earthworm, anyway) deserves even more awe.
If someone is thriving being a vegetarian, keep on!
My understanding of vegetarians in other countries, in contrast to the U.S., is that there is some component of insects and their excrement in the diet. They might be clinging to the vegetables and don't get washed off. As far as the people in India you mention, I'd like to know details about what they eat throughout the year, including bugs.