ROUND TWO: 5 Smart[ass] Answers to Dumb[ass] Questions About Veganism

11 Jun

Well folks, like most things, it took a bit longer than anticipated for us to post our next round of 5 Smart[ass] Answers to 5 Dumb[ass] Questions About Veganism. Thankfully we had a very good excuse. “What great excuse?” you ask? Well for starters, we had some laundry to catch up on, and there was a Golden Girls marathon.

Question 1: I have a friend who went vegan and she had to stop because she got too sick.

The Smart Answer: I’m sorry to hear that, especially since the vast majority of people who switch to a plant-based diet actually report feeling better — which shouldn’t come as a surprise given how much fresher, lighter, and healthier most vegan food is.

While it’s unfortunate she got sick, I have trouble believing that not eating hamburgers and milkshakes was the cause. A review of basic nutrition will show you there’s nothing in meat, eggs or dairy you can’t get from plants. Even the conservative and industry-funded American Dietetic Association has gone on record stating that “appropriately planned vegetarian diets, including total vegetarian or vegan diets, are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases.”

Unless your friend’s “vegan” diet consisted solely of Coke and potato chips, the most likely cause of her mystery malaise is the ‘nocebo effect’. In medicine, the nocebo effect occurs when a subject’s pessimistic beliefs about an otherwise inert drug produce harmful or unpleasant symptoms. In the world of plant-based eating, the nocebo effect occurs when a non-vegan’s pessimistic beliefs about the adequacy and safety of a vegan diet make them think they’re getting sick.

 Think about it for a moment: from our earliest years we are taught that animal foods are the cornerstone of a healthy diet. Beef is “real food for real people”, milk is “nature’s perfect food”, fish is “brain food”, and eggs are “nature’s perfect protein”. From industry-funded food guidelines to marketing agencies positioned to look like public health organizations (Beef ‘Council’, Dairy ‘Council’), the animal food lobby works day and night to make sure its products stay seen as the only reliable sources of protein, calcium, iron, and a host of other nutrients vital to human growth and health.

Is it really any wonder, then, that a small percentage of people who try eating vegan pull a ‘Portman’ and claim that doing so made them feel unwell, like something was missing? The truth is, something was missing: some basic nutritional information, a little willpower, and a lot of empathy.

The Smart-Ass Answer: First of all, if you had a friend who went vegan and stopped, she was never really vegan in the first place. Being vegan is staying vegan, ipso facto. You can’t ‘stop’ being a vegan any more than you can ‘stop’ being a feminist or anti-racist. That’s because veganism isn’t about food, it’s about empathy. Once you’ve made the conscious connection between human and animal suffering, there’s no going back.

I think what you meant to say is that you had a friend who ate like a vegan for a while, then stopped because she thought it was making her sick, a phenomenon we like to call the Double Down Double Standard. The Double Down Double Standard happens every time a vegan gets sick and an ignorant non-vegan blames it on the vegan’s diet, often while simultaneously slobbering over an artery-clogging, immuno-suppressing, cancer-promoting deathfest like the KFC Double Down.

Of course when a non-vegan gets sick, it’s chalked up to germs, overexertion, or just plain bad luck. Never mind that most flus and food poisonings originate from animal farms, or that vegans live an average of 8-10 years longer their non-vegan counterparts. I mean, who needs science and statistics when you’ve got folk nutrition and a bunch of self-supporting hunches?

Question Two: Where do you get your calcium?

The Smart Answer: That would make for a pretty long list, but here are a few: soy milk, kale, almonds, broccoli, green beans, romaine lettuce, tofu, tahini, fortified orange juice, molasses, bok choy. It’s really not difficult once you know where to look.

What I find more interesting is why you assumed it would be hard for me to get enough calcium. Do you realize that plant foods are the primary source of calcium for most animals, including cows, horses, elephants and our fellow great apes? The only reason you automatically associate cow’s milk with calcium is because the dairy industry has spent billions of dollars making sure you do. They’ve also spent billions of dollars making you sure you don’t associate cow’s milk with some of its other key ingredients, like saturated fat, cholesterol, lactose, casein, dioxins, hormones, and antibiotics.

Think about it for a second: if humans are really meant to consume cow’s milk, then why is 75% of the world’s population lactose intolerant? If dairy products are necessary for strong bones, then why do the countries that consume the most have the highest rates of osteoporosis?

The next time you feel compelled to ask a vegan where they get their calcium, stop and think about who taught you to ask this question in the first place. If it was the Kale Council or the Bok Choy Board, your next soy ice cream is on me.

The Smart-Ass Answer: Where do you get your questions? Let me guess: a full page ad in Good Housekeeping featuring some sell-out celebrity with fan-blown hair and a slimy white mustache?

If I had a dollar for every time some unwitting mouthpiece for the dairy industry asked me that question, I’d have enough money to take out an ad in Good Housekeeping myself. Except instead of “Got Milk?”, mine would say, “Got Acne/Allergies/Bloating/Diarrhea/Obesity/Diabetes/Cancer/Heart Disease/Death?”

Question Three: My grandpa ate bacon and eggs every day and lived to be 95.

The Smart Answer: I’m glad your grandfather lived a long life; I hope he was healthy and happy for most of it. That said, I’d be careful about using isolated anecdotes to defend bad eating habits when the overwhelming majority of evidence has shown that a diet centred on animal foods leads to heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, osteoporosis, and so on. My grandmother smoked 1-2 packs of cigarettes per day and lived into her late 80s, but her good luck doesn’t in any way discredit the decades of research that prove smoking causes cancer.

Are you aware that The China Study — conducted jointly by Cornell, Oxford, and the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine — concluded there is no point at which an increase in animal foods does not lead to an increased risk of degenerative disease? And that, conversely, there is no point at which a decrease in animal foods does not lead to a correspondingly decreased risk?

In other words, bacon and eggs are straight up bad for you. And not just for you, but for the animals and the planet as well. With so many important reasons to avoid animal-based foods, does it really make sense to draw attention to the small percentage of people who live a long time despite their unhealthy habits, rather than the vast majority who don’t?

The Smart-Ass Answer: Oh shit, really?!  Well if that’s the case, I guess I’ll head over to Denny’s and throw back a few Grand Slams. I guess I’ll also drive there drunk, because I’ve heard some people live to a ripe old age doing that too.

Look, if what you’re really saying is “fuck statistics”, I’m with you. ‘Science’ and ‘research’ means nothing to people like us, hard-living mavericks who know that if we don’t want to get sick, we just won’t. Nobody bosses us around, least of all some wimp-ass disease that’s really only there to weed out the weak so us Marlboro Men can take all the spoils.

Question Four: What would happen to all the farm animals if everyone went vegan?

The Smart Answer: For starters, even if this unlikely scenario were to occur, it would take place over a considerable period of time. What this means is that the farmed animals who are alive today would long since have been exploited/killed/eaten, with fewer and fewer animals bred to match the decreasing demand.

I’m not sure if you’re aware of this, but far from being allowed to reproduce naturally, today’s farmed animals are artificially (read: forcibly) inseminated as often as their bodies can tolerate. This keeps the females almost perpetually pregnant, ensuring a never-ending supply of offspring who are allowed to live only as long as it’s considered profitable to keep feeding them. Chickens raised for flesh, for example, live just 5-6 weeks before being stuffed into trucks and hauled off to slaughter. Pigs suffer the same fate at just 6-8 months. The lifespan of the average farmed animal is so short that even if the demand for animal foods dropped quite rapidly, there would still never be an ‘excess’ of animals because they would never have been bred in the first place.

In case you’re sentimental about the idea of there being fewer (than 60 billion) cows, pigs and chickens on the planet, consider that today’s farmed animals have been selectively bred, not for optimal health or happiness, but for optimal ‘productivity’. As a result, every single factory farmed animal alive today suffers from genetic weaknesses that make his/her life extremely difficult. Chickens raised for flesh, for example, commonly suffer from ascites, a form of congestive heart failure wherein the chicken’s heart and lungs can’t grow fast enough to keep up with his/her rapidly increasing body weight.

In other words, everyone going vegan would be the best possible thing for farmed animals. Not only would tens of billions of animals not have to spend short, joyless lives trapped in bodies and confinement systems that cause a great deal of suffering; those few that remained might actually be able to live out the rest of their lives in peace.

The Smart-Ass Answer: My apologies; I had no idea I was speaking with a farmed animal advocate. And here I thought the reason you ate meat was because you were conditioned to.

It’s so refreshing to see someone who has really thought this issue through and come to the obvious conclusion that the best way to help animals is to enslave and kill them. It’s funny, I proposed something similar to Amnesty International about helping child labourers in Bangladesh, but they never wrote me back. Some people just don’t get it.

Question Five: But we were meant to eat meat.

The Smart Answer: If by “meant”, you mean ‘designed by nature’, you couldn’t be more wrong. Nothing about our physiology points to us having evolved as meat-eaters we have no claws; we have no fangs; our jaw moves laterally for grinding plant matter; our saliva breaks down starch; our stomachs lack the acids to break down flesh; our bowels are long and require large quantities of fibre.

Epidemiology comes at it from a different angle: if animal foods are ‘natural’ for human beings, why do the populations who eat the most of them have the highest rates of diet-related illnesses like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, osteoporosis, and most cancers? Do you think lions or bears need to worry about their cholesterol or blood pressure?  If we were ‘meant’ to eat meat as you suggest, wouldn’t our systems have evolved to not only tolerate flesh, but actually thrive on it?

The fact of the matter is that our bodies have not adapted to eating meat. Nor have our minds. Despite the fantasy most people have about our ancestors feeling one with nature and at peace with killing animals, this was simply not the case.  Elaborate hunting rituals from all corners of the globe center on what anthropologists categorize as appeasement, atonement and guilt-reduction for violence the human psyche is clearly not comfortable with. Given our abundance of mirror neurons and immense capacity for empathy, it should come as no surprise that hurting animals who suffer like we do causes profound moral anxiety that only cessation or labyrinthine cognitive dissonance can assuage.

None of this is meant to deny that at some point in our history we did learn to hunt, which did allow us to survive in areas where our natural plant-based food sources were lacking or nonexistent. What not enough people realize, however, is that the only reason we ended up in such marginal areas is because we followed herd animals there. So even the argument that we had ‘no choice’ but to kill animals in those areas is moot, given that we ‘chose’ to follow them there in the first place.

The bottom line is that human beings have made some pretty big mistakes, and hunting and killing animals was one of the most colossal. Not only has it caused untold and immeasurable suffering to animals, it has also severely compromised our own physical and psychological health. Add to this the impact hunting has had on entire species (many hunted to extinction) and you have a full-blown ecological nightmare that ‘nature’ most surely would never have intended.

 The Smart-Ass Answer: So you fancy yourself a bit of a naturalist, do you? Nothing wrong with tradition I guess, unless of course that tradition happens to be evil, in which case maybe it should be cast into hell along with all of the other early-human ‘traditions’ we once condoned like rape, infanticide, genocide, and slavery.

I’m assuming that since you have such mad respect for your early hominid homeboys, you’ve decided to avoid cars, subways, airplanes, computers, smart-phones and anything else they didn’t use. No? You own three iPads, have 500,000 Air Miles and never miss an episode of Ice Road Truckers? I’ve got to admit I’m a bit confused. Hurtling through the air 30,000 feet off the ground would be totally cool with your hominid homies, but eating tofu and almond milk would somehow push them over the edge?

Time-traveling hypotheticals aside, the most embarrassing part of your assertion is that it’s patently false. Humans were not in any way ‘meant’ to eat meat, as even the most cursory glance at any person would show you. See any claws or fangs? Me neither. What about hands for picking fruit, or teeth for chomping carrots? Me too. You’d think that if nature had intended for us to kill and eat other animals, we would at the very least have been born with a set of vestigial barbecue tongs.

But we weren’t. And that’s really too bad for all of those ‘back to nature’ idiots out there who think killing and eating animals is an integral part of being human, because for most of them being at the ‘top’ of the food chain is just a subconscious stand-in for the actual game they are losing at: life.

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28 Responses to “ROUND TWO: 5 Smart[ass] Answers to Dumb[ass] Questions About Veganism”

  1. Melissa Stewart June 11, 2011 at 12:10 pm #

    Fantastic post….love the smart ass answers! :)

  2. Kimberly Lynn June 11, 2011 at 2:16 pm #

    So true. Great answers. :)

  3. Kelly L June 11, 2011 at 2:20 pm #

    Well worth the wait! I don’t know how anyone could read this and NOT become vegan! I am off to go check out your new t-shirt shop…

  4. ggaleano June 11, 2011 at 3:13 pm #

    LOVE IT!! Again-I’m probably going to memorize these :) I’m off to check out your T-shirts!!

  5. Laura June 11, 2011 at 5:18 pm #

    This series is awesome! I have to refer back to these posts when people ask me these questions, especially for the smartass answers. Thanks!

  6. bora rhee June 11, 2011 at 6:54 pm #

    “double down double standard”.

    if i weren’t already, that alone would make me a fan for life. excellent installment, shan & jos!

    xoxo

    • anna June 12, 2011 at 2:00 pm #

      i know, that’s officially entering my vocabulary. so is “calcidum”.

  7. Tannis June 11, 2011 at 7:34 pm #

    Love it, thank you. Have been vegan for 21 years – you’d think the questions would have evolved over time, but nope.

    May I humbly offer a gentle clarification/suggestion – the diabetes you refer to is Type 2 which is predominantly life style related – and becoming epidemic. I am a parent of a Type 1 (aka Juvenile diabetes) diabetic vegan. Type 1 is an auto immune disease that attacks and shuts down the insulin producing beta cells in the pancreas. It’s not preventable, nor is it related to diet and lifestyle. My daughter has not only had to answer the “dumbass” questions about being vegan but she also gets the misinformed “but how can you have diabetes if you’re a vegan?” *sigh*

    Thanks again.

  8. T-Midwest June 11, 2011 at 9:45 pm #

    Speaking of question 5, we’re not meant to eat just meat or just plants. We’re omnivores, opportunistic feeders who’d eat anything. Our close animal relatives, chimps, for example, do not live on fruits and veggies. They won’t say no to a smaller animal (see BBC’s Life of mammals, for example, they show a footage of a gang of chimps hunting some other smaller primates). That means that our digestive systems are “jack of all trades, master of none”. We have teeth which do OK job grinding plant food and OK job tearing meat, but they’re not specialized for either job. Same with our stomachs. Of course, in stone age, it probably was a lot harder to catch an animal than gather some plants, so human diet back then had more plant food and less animal food in it. But saying that we’re herbivores by nature distorts the facts just as much as saying that we’re carnivores by nature. We’re neither.

    • Vegan Rabbit June 13, 2011 at 1:22 am #

      Omnivores are able to live healthy lives and THRIVE on either an exclusively plant based diet, or an exclusively meat based diet (or anything in between). Humans cannot live on an exclusively meat based diet – we would die within weeks because meat contains little more than fat, protein and iron. We are also only able to eat meat after it has been prepared in a sanitary fashion and cooked – and even then we normally only eat certain parts of the animal. REAL omnivores in the wild don’t care if they’re eating bones, fur, brains, entrails (and all RAW, mind you) – but most of us humans cringe at the thought of a pile of hot steaming raw guts on a platter for dinner. When was the last time you saw road kill on the side of the road and thought “Mmmm… dinner”? Humans only eat meat because we have been conditioned to our whole lives by our parents and by society as a whole. The biggest proof that we are in fact HERBIVORES is that we are plagued with diseases like heart disease. Lions don’t die of heart attacks. Bears don’t die of heart attacks. HUMANS DO. When was the last time you heard of a vegan dying of a heart attack?

      • T-Midwest June 13, 2011 at 8:19 pm #

        We are conditioned to eat all our food clean and prepared in some fashion (and there are dishes which have raw meats, btw, sushi is the best example). Vegans don’t eat veggies straight out of the ground, either (unless you want to tell me otherwise). I’m sure our prehistoric ancestors didn’t know how to cook their kills and ate some raw meat, too, until they discovered fire and found out that it tastes better that way. And, by the time most of us see roadkill, it’s in no shape to be eaten anyway (like a strawberry that has been stepped upon – would you care for one of those?). But, hey, in some states drivers are allowed to pick up their own roadkill, such as deer, for example and can turn it into a bunch of dinners – I guess it sort of compensates for the damage such collision does to a car. And as for animals and heart attacks, most animals in the wild do not live long enough to get them, they die of something else first. But I have heard of captive animals having heart attacks (like a bear in a zoo, for example).

    • Vegan Rabbit June 15, 2011 at 11:33 am #

      @T-Midwest: In regards to your comment to me:

      About sushi: I am well aware that sushi is raw fish, as I used to be a meat eater and sushi was a favorite of mine. However, raw fish must be kept very very clean and at a temperature that will not allow the meat to go bad. Also, it’s not just about RAW meat, it’s about eating the entire animal. So in this case (sushi) I’m not talking about just eating some raw fish flesh, I’m talking about eating the raw fish flesh, scales, face, bones, fins, entrails, etc. (RAW) and not being even a little grossed out by that.

      About roadkill: Ever heard the phrase “Beggers can’t be choosers”? The same applies to animals living in the wild. If they are hungry enough, they won’t care how squished, flattened, and unappetizing a dead animal carcass is. They need to eat and here is a perfectly good meal for them to do so. Humans on the other hand don’t live in the wild, and on top of that our stomachs and saliva is far to alkaline to keep us safe from any disease we may get from this dead animal carcass. A true carnivore or omniovre would be protected against disease (at least much more than humans would) because of the acidity in their bodies.

      About animals in zoos: Of course you’ve heard of animals dying of heart attacks in zoos. Zoos place animals in an enviroment that is unnatural to them. Wild animals don’t like being caged up in a miniature version of their natural habitat. It’s unfair to keep a polar bear in a zoo when in the wild they would roam miles and miles. Has it ever occured to you that maybe these animals are dying of heart attacks from all of the STRESS they are put under by living like this? Not to mention the lack of excercise from being limited to a number of square footage, when normally they would have the entire forest, desert, etc. to roam in?

      • T-Midwest June 16, 2011 at 12:33 pm #

        @Vegan Rabbit All you’re saying is that we advanced well beyond our primate beginnings and now can afford to be picky and not consider dirty and spoiled stuff edible. Not much surprising about that.. That doesn’t preclude us from enjoying a well-prepared steak or a plate of sushi. Our closest animal relatives (which are chimps, btw) will eat that unappealing stuff we wouldn’t. I don’t see anything in that that would tell me that I can’t prepare animal products to my liking and eat them.

        And as for the zoos, did you know that a lot of animals live longer in the zoos? Sometimes by many years longer, long enough to develop age-related ailments, like arthritis and heart disease? Because in the wild once their bodies are no longer in prime condition they either become prey or starve because they can’t catch prey. Not saying that we should put all of them in the zoos, but I don’t think zoos are so bad as animal activists like to depict them.

      • Vegan Rabbit June 16, 2011 at 2:45 pm #

        @T-Midwest:

        About raw meat and chimps: What I’m saying is that we have evolved enough to know that eating certain foods in certain ways can HARM us, so we are able to get around that because of this knowledge. Your argument about chimps eating whatever disgusting thing they find does nothing for your argument. Would you recommend eating an old animal carcass to your child? Your argument says that because chimps can do it, and because they are our closest living relative, that we should be able to do it too. Would YOU take a bite? Chances are, if you did it would make you sick – and may even kill you.

        About zoos: Would you like to live in a zoo? It would be really nice – you wouldn’t even notice the difference between the zoo and your natural life outside. They would put you in a miniature version of your naural habitat (probably a nice cozy sit-com set looking thing) and you would have to live there for your entire life. It would be better for you though, because you wouldn’t have to worry about where your next meal is going to come from, or any predators that may want to eat you. You might live a little longer because of this. Day in, day out, the same few hundred square feet in a doll house with nothing to do but NOT be eaten, NOT search for food, NOT do things you normally would like to do. Sounds like fun right? Sure, some animals in zoos may live longer lives, but there have been many studies that have shown that these animals endure high levels of stress from not being able to do what they would normally do in the wild. Pacing back and forth, repetitive motions, inability to breed, the list goes on and on. You can’t possibly argue that zoo animals quality of life is BETTER than that of their wild relatives.

        Main argument: The main argument for me is that animals are not here for us to abuse. To rationalize our control over them by saying that because we CAN control them, means that we SHOULD control them goes along with the same idiology as that of mysoginists and racists. The same belief that because we were born one way, and they were born another way means that that we should rule them. The belief that because they cannot defend themselves against our attacks means that we are right in attacking them. The argument for or against animal rights is a simple one and is fought between people who believe and people who do not believe that might is right.

  9. Lori Coleman June 11, 2011 at 11:52 pm #

    love it.

  10. Jessica June 12, 2011 at 1:35 am #

    “Question Four: What would happen to all the farm animals if everyone went vegan?

    The Smart Answer: For starters, once this likely scenario occurs, it will have taken place over a considerable period of time. ”

    ***fixed it for you.

  11. Catal June 12, 2011 at 7:28 am #

    People who become ill when they begin a vegan diet may experience a “healing crisis” When the body releases toxins and begins to restore itself to a healthy state, flu and cold like symptoms may be felt. This is a temporary condition and the severity of symptoms may coincide with the health or lack there of the body. In other words, what goes in as crap, will come out as crap and will be felt accordingly.

  12. Dawn June 12, 2011 at 12:33 pm #

    Catal is right, and I think also your body will go through a bit of a withdrawal of all the nasty things put in your body. It probably takes a good month or two months of being straight up vegan to feel 100% normal.

    Great post my friend! Love it!

  13. NG June 12, 2011 at 6:19 pm #

    Agreed T-Midwest!

    The biggest problems with the lifestyle of North Americans now are the excessive portion sizes and the lack of physical activity, not that we eat animal products.

    I think it needs to be said that just because you eat animal products doesn’t mean you eat them every meal, all the time. I am not vegan, nor do I want to be, but I enjoy many meals without any animal products at all! I believe in increasing variety in your diet in general, and by removing all animal products, I feel that I would be limiting that variety – although I understand that many people feel that they have increased their dietary repertoire by becoming vegan, probably because it has forced them to seek alternatives. If you have an interest in food, as I do, you don’t have to change your diet drastically to try new things… everything in moderation is my rule of thumb:)

    Also, how does humans hunting animals for food and causing some animal suffering differ from other animals hunting animals for food and causing some animal suffering?

    Finally, when you talk about how anthropologists have described various rituals that mean the humans were guilt-ridden – how can *anyone* know how these people were feeling? I can only assume that these people were exposed to hunting essentially from birth and would very likely NOT have experienced guilt. Their rituals, as I understood it, were to ensure that there would always be a supply of animals for them to hunt. It would be a way of life, sort of like many of us right now who go into a grocery store for our food and have no idea where our food comes from…

    Thanks for your posts – I like a healthy debate and enjoy hearing other points of view:)

    • anna June 12, 2011 at 7:31 pm #

      hi there,

      in response to your question about how humans eating animals differs from other animals eating animals, i think there are two main differences: necessity and morality.

      other animals need to eat other animals, especially in the case of obligate carnivores in the wild. if they don’t, they die. humans, on the other hand, not only don’t need to eat other animals, we are healthier when we don’t (as dietetic associations all point out).

      humans are also able to engage in abstract reasoning about morality and to enact laws based on what is right and wrong. that’s why murder, rape and theft are illegal, even though these things occur ubiquitously in nature. similarly, we have the capacity to realize that unnecessarily hurting animals is wrong.

      in addition, factory farms (from where 99% of meat, dairy, and eggs come from) are nothing like hunting in nature, where predators chase down their prey, and quickly and efficiently kill the weakest and oldest of a prey population (aiding that prey population in genetic selection).

      i’m sure you’re not advocating that we have the right to kill other animals because we’re the stronger species, because otherwise you’d be rejecting the very premise upon which human rights are based (i.e. that the ability to dominate is insufficient justification for exercising that domination).

      of course, if you’d like to hunt down some dinner using your bare hands and incisors and then eat your catch raw like other animals do, i have to admit i’d be intrigued to see how you’d do it! :)

      • T-Midwest June 13, 2011 at 8:42 pm #

        Human rights are for humans. They don’t apply to animals. I don’t advocate killing animals just for the fun of it, but raising some animals for food purposes is no different to me than planting some crops for the same purposes. And as NG pointed out, our problem is not that we eat meat, fish and whatever (fish is actually good for us), it’s how much we eat in general and how little exercise we’re getting. And speaking of hunting with bare hands, do vegans gather their food in the forests somewhere and dig it out of the ground with bare hands? Or still go to a supermarket? If it’s the latter, I think the suggestion that in order to eat meat we have to hunt it down and kill it ourselves is just silly and has some double standard to it.

  14. grace June 13, 2011 at 3:26 pm #

    Shiiiiiiit yes!

  15. unethical vegan June 14, 2011 at 9:51 pm #

    I could not have loved this more.

  16. StaceyG June 21, 2011 at 3:07 pm #

    Another awesome post! I think your smart ass answers are a bit more smart ass than the last post like this. Me likes. >:)

  17. Gary June 26, 2011 at 11:08 pm #

    Some rights for humans are applicable to animals because they, like us, have profound interests and the the ability to suffer. That level of sentience confers obligations on moral agents – us – and moral obligations are basically rights.

    The difference between killing animals and “killing” plants is that animals unlike plants are clearly sentient and have a will to live, and derive meaning from their lives.

    If you can thrive on a plant-based diet and don’t need to kill animals for their flesh but you do it anyway, you’re basically kiling for the fun of it.

  18. Gary June 26, 2011 at 11:24 pm #

    Most humans I know not only are repulsed by roadkill, but feel sorrow not hunger when they see a just-killed bird on the lawn – not to mention an easily-capturable baby bird in the nest. Let’s go with our compassion rather than seek to overcome it.

  19. Jesse Fox June 30, 2011 at 1:45 pm #

    Possibly my favorite blog entry ever. Everything you said was so true… great work :)

  20. Kenneth Pace April 12, 2013 at 2:56 pm #

    thanks for the very informative veganomaly. It will be such a help for us to answer questions we get asked. Kudos to you. Ken &Carol

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