Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: New South Wales, Australia
I'm vegan - sort of, I've been vegan - sort of for four years, and vegetarian for the rest of my life. I say vegan sort of because I eat honey and buy leather which apparently isn't vegan at all, but vegetarian isn't quite accurate either.
I don't like how other vegan/vegetarians virtually "attack" people about what they eat, or insist on 'rubbing it in their face' going on about all the terrible stuff. Not only is it not a good way to live life (I think) but it makes a really bad name for the rest of us. I know many people don't care what other people think, and I am all there with you - to an extent.
I meet people and I don't tell them I am vegan until I get to know them, because you could say you're gay and get a better reaction sometimes - people get so defensive expecting me to jump down their throats because apparently that is what others have done to them.
Although, because you asked my opinion, I'll give it to you. No unsolicited opinions on this subject. I don't understand how people who really like animals can eat them. If you really like something that much I can't understand why you would intentionally cause it harm. Killing it is causing it harm, and many of the conditions aren't good, even if the killing is clean and fast, the animals are usually quite terrified. I also believe milk from cows is causing them harm, not so much small scale, but large scale, and I think it leads to harm for calves and such. Its not a blameless industry. I don't really have issues with ethical eggs but I think eating a chicken's period is really gross. I also think eating a corpse is really gross...but each to their own. I don't go around telling people this (my opinions) unless they ask in a calm, open minded way. If someone asks and I can tell they are just picking a fight, or they're not open minded, I don't go into my motivation. Really not worth it.
I have a lot of, well respect isn't the right word, but its something a little like that, for people who are aware of the animals conditions, accept that they don't value the animal's life that much, but due to the conditions choose to buy local, organic or otherwise meat where they know it has had good conditions, a good, calm death.
I have never had "difficulty" in keeping to this diet even when living with meat eaters but I think taking steps towards organic, local and more moral standards is an admirable thing to do, if vegetarian is too difficult for you. I don't hold others to my standard, so I really thinking taking any step, no matter how small, towards the welfare of animals, and the environment are good - where as others think you should go "all the way", I think steps are good as well.
Moral question for other vegetarians... and this is one I have problems on. Leather. Morally I am against it, for some reason not to the same extent as meat because I feel eating is much more of a waste where as leather can have an appreciated value, even so I don't feel its quite right. But anyway, how do you feel about it? How do you, if you do, avoid leather in the horse world? Because there are no boots that aren't leather, even non-horse shoes i have difficulty finding non-leather and often I can't and I buy leather, and feel guilty. Things like bridles, I find the synthetic ones are just so crappy I just end up buying a leather one and take care if so it lasts but still...
How does everyone else feel about that?
With meat too, I think western societies consume WAY too much these days. Even from an environmental standpoint, without the morals.