This story from the Chicago Tribune made me laugh at first, but the more I thought about it, the less I liked it. I’m not an evil person; I laughed because of the headline that the Trib used (“Mom’s beef puts son’s sperm count at stake”). I was sure the story was going to be about some angry mother suing a fertility clinic for miscounting her son’s sperm, and how it would have been even funnier if they had used “steak” instead of “stake,” but no. Instead, we learn that the hormones and pesticides we’ve been pumping into our cattle since the atomic age are being passed from pregnant mothers to their children, and that for women who ate beef at least seven times a week during pregnancy, their sons had an average sperm count almost 25% below normal. Obviously, these women were eating too much beef. But even occasional beef-eaters, beware: the article reports that second-generation sperm count decreases are proportional to beef frequency increases. No wonder Europe doesn’t want any of our beef: they’re all experiencing negative population growth as it is. I suppose the moral of the story is, your local farmer is trying to kill your babies! No, it’s to moderate your indulgences during pregnancy, and eat organic whenever possible. Tastes better anyway.