I didn’t fully understand the problem with angry vegans until… for a variety of reasons I found out Ellen Degeneres mentioned something about eggs from her neighbours, and people went on a rampage saying she wasn’t vegan at all,that she was never one,how much she sucked, how uneducated she was etc… I read awesome articles about this, making analysis on the overall impact she ( and other famous people ) have on the public so more people will consider to stop eating meat,or gradually consume less, but then it all became clear, most vegan people don’t think this is good, it’s a black or white zone, you either are a true real vegan or you are just as “bad” as a meat eater.
I will try to make this not too long,but I’ve got much so say, I was in several Facebook groups, some had vegetarians wanting to go vegan and some had vegetarians who didn’t feel like changing yet, both were pretty much attacked by “proper” vegans ,being reminded with every written sentence, of the amount of animals that suffer because they can’t grow a pair and go vegan already. Mostly there was and there is no room for progress, let me set a very clear example of this , ok?
I got this friend,he loves animals,I showed him the video “Earthlings” ,he was touched ,he decided he quits meat,he still eats cheese and eggs, said eggs come from these hens who live in the house nearby ( he lives in a ranch-like place in Mexico, huge area ) in this place, they are old fashioned, the hens live till they die from natural causes, no, do not raise your eyebrow, such things happen in some places,my granny used to be like this,she kept hens and they had place to roam,proper food,fun ,trees to perch and sleep and hen-houses for shelter. I..I can almost listen to some vegans saying “slaves,they were slaves”, well in this world,in this reality that’s pretty much the best hens could be, not clustered in those horrible farms/industries, the truth is some animals exist because man as species wanted them around,so since they are here now and they don’t have a real natural habitat, we should be happy some can live in the most natural way.
Anyway back to my friend, the cheese is from milk from this cow,who is just around with her calf, I admit I am not thrilled about cow’s milk cos they have to get pregnant,but of course this is much much better than milk gotten from the industry. So this friend,he rescues cats,he has sheltered around 15, paid vet bills,rescued dogs,find houses for those animals,and volunteered at local shelters, doesn’t that count as real,meaningful action that benefits the animals more than merely not eating them? Sure,not eating animals is super good, but how many of us non-meat eaters do something else? We try of course,but it’s so sad to see vegans shaking their fingers at vegetarians and calling them selfish and telling them they are no different from people who eat meat. Well excuse me,they are different, yes, I am aware of the exploitation on the industry for hens and cows,also the barbaric means to get angora sweaters, down feathers and so on, but I do think a vegetarian who is trying to reduce the egg/dairy consumption, maybe opting for organic or local alternatives differs greatly from people who don’t care enough to even stop eating meat in the first place. Also most vegetarians I know do care about using non-tested cosmetics, they are against Killer whales living in stupid small places in seaworld and the like and stuff like that,it’s not a “only vegans do this” thing.
I didn’t comprehend what some people meant with respecting each other’s time,but I do now, I nagged my mother for about 12 years with the meat thing, ( been a vegetarian for 13 years at the time) but she didn’t listen,cos most people don’t listen if you keep shoving stuff in their faces and telling them how horrible it is that they do what they do and how wrong they are, usually without providing some nice,easy and cheap alternatives. She ,on her own, decided to go vegan when a cat we had died,she loved that cat,the first cat she actually built a strong bond with, and then,that was what she needed,she took a nutrition course with me,I was ( still am ) in charge of cooking and finding how to substitute things,and in about 4 months she went from eating cheese daily to have non,nor desire none. But this is true only for her, some people may do it faster,some slower, and we shouldn’t put them down and sit on our high horses being judgemental.
Were we always conscious about things? Are we trying to reduce suffering and violence towards other animals ( remember, humans are animals as well ) by attacking other people? By calling them names,being right down rude? And then we go and be all offended if someone doesn’t agree. I have done this myself, of course I did,but now I’m a wiser person and I know I can’t be like that cos:
1.- It makes no sense and helps no one
2.- I’m actually scaring people off,of even thinking about going vegan,vegetarian,etc
3.- It’s not nice!!
I saw this video,a guy explained being tolerant and strategic, I think he’s awesome, I’ll link him up at the end of this post, he proposed a situation in where a friend,had cooked a lasagne for you, all vegan,the soy milk, the filling, vegan cheese, BUT the friend missed to read that the pasta thing for the lasagne contained egg, the question was, would you still eat it? Most said yes,real hard core vegans said no way!!, I think it turns to a matter of purity, many people feel disgusted to the idea of this, I don’t, I would of before,yes, but now..look, the friend made a real huge effort,are you going to be so rude and unreasonable to reject an otherwise perfectly ok dish cos they missed to read an ingredient? I’d eat it and then nicely,on other day,suggest another brand of pasta that has no egg.
This of course has limits that are set by each person, I can tolerate egg in a situation like this ( or if I go to my friend’s and he can only offer me omelette with the eggs, I’d eat that cos starving has never helped anyone,or if heavens forgive me, I would feel like eating eggs,cos the egg is the only food thing that can be obtained in a very ethical way,because hens do lay naturally,please keep in mind I do not refer to commercial food with industry eggs,not even to organic eggs,just the ones where one can be sure the hens don’t get killed,sue me! ) I’d not have cheese though,cos I hate the flavour,I haaate it, and I’d never have any meat again,cos it’s a dead animal regardless of how he/she died,but other than that,we are not accumulating points on how vegan we are, nor do we get a reset if we get “tainted” with something unproper. This other guy in a vegan group,he sometimes can’t afford 100% vegan soap! Cos it is more expensive usually, is he less of a vegan? Is he a horrible person? No Sir! I am happy to say I am not rich but I have commodities like going to the gym,having Internet access and I can buy vegan cookies if I want to,but this is not possible for everyone,and we must put ourselves in the other person shoes. It’s been a long day,and all that there is to eat is pizza, with veggies, won’t you eat it and then feel sick? This is a matter of decisions.
We could also drop the hating on people, yes, I was in that wagon too, way before going vegan I must say. What good can it do to try and be kind to non human animals when we are being emotionally and verbally violent towards humans at the same time? It’s like I preach about non-violence, then I go burn your house down cos you are not enough “non-violentist” as I am? Please think about it without the anger, I know why we get angry, it’s sad and horrible what happens to the other animals and it must stop,but by saying small victories or specific campaigns are worthless we are not helping at all. Take this,there are most people who like dogs,cats,dolphins,yes yes,it’s speciest,but that is how it is usually,so, they like some animals,isn’t it better than many people have at least some degree of empathy than having none? With that as a start something bigger can come,but if we go and crush it like “Blah,you only like dogs,but you eat burgers,you suck,you go to hell”…can you say this to the face of a person who has rescued ,say,18 dogs? saved their lives? Do you stop and rescue animals on the street? Or are you one of those vegans that are against having animals in the house?
Cos cats and dogs have a real hard time out there, there are many risks,these species already need us to be in good conditions,so the least we could do is educate people on neutering, helping shelters,donating, adopting.
This brings me to… truly respecting animals, the last thing I read on this vegan group before leaving was a debate among people who were convinced the only clear ,logical, ultimate way to fix the world was to take ALL carnivore animals, bring them to a separate island, feed them synthetic food while making genetic experiments to make them herbivores.. Are you…like…I can’t even… seriously? And this is NOT being speciest? They want to make the animals entirely into something else so THEY won’t feel guilty? Whaaat?
I just want to add, famous people do bring much attention to alternatives,like being a vegan or a vegetarian,so are you going to say Ellen Degeneres has done nothing,when with her book and website many people has at least reduced their intake? ( Yes reducing is a way to reach not using ).
Also Meatless monday is a good initiative, why do we humans always want all or nothing? We all start somewhere. Welfare is also important cos,ok,yes I do want that someday animals are no longer seen as meat sources,as machines,as things we can use,but we have to also think about the animals that exist right now, wouldn’t it be a good thing that these animals that are already in such situations would have a life that is even a bit better,while the time comes that no animal will suffer again?
I think I made my point clear, now I proceed to link you to two awesome articles.
The angry vegan
About eggs & Ellen Degeneres
Remember,we are only humans and we can only try,and keep trying.