I must confess to being no expert in the philosophy of veganism as a code of ethics. But I believe the reasoning goes like this:
” It is morally repugnant for a human being to in any way consume, use, trade in, monetize, or profit from any animal products. Even to the extent of beeswax lip balm made from an abandoned colony of wild bees.”
I won’t get into the finer points of just how silly that sounds to any rational person outside the vegan community. The web is full of people lampooning veganism. Instead I would like to talk about the real mindset behind the glossy facade that PETA and their ilk peddle to each other. It can be boiled down to one simple statement. Something that if they are really honest with themselves, they all feel deep down:
“Animal suffering means more to me than human suffering.”
Think about it. These are the people that call in death threats to Micheal Vick. They’re the ones that want to outlaw all animal testing. Not just cosmetics, or psychological experiments. (which, frankly I find repellant) No, even research for cutting edge medical treatments that might help someone’s sick child, or parent. I’ve personally watched old ladies walk past hungry homeless men to feed feral cats. Which, by the way, is mostly feeding the feral raccoons since they chase the cats off the food before the old lady is out of sight.
They’ll risk their own life and limb, not to mention freedom, chasing whalers across the Antarctic. And they cry and change the channel when a humane society begging commercial comes on the TV.
Why do some people feel closer to animals and their pain, than to their fellow human freakin beings? A lot of reasons. A dog never broke their heart, or got drunk and beat them. A cat never teased and humiliated them in high school. You name it. Some folks are just not comfortable around other people. And that’s every bit of okay.
If you feel like a vegan diet is right for you, and right for the Earth, then good on you. That is highly commendable. But please don’t pretend you’re this selfless martyr. And spare me the righteous crusade for truth, justice, and the soy lecithin way.
Because the reality is that you’re not swaying anyone with the “meat is murder” rhetoric. And what you actually are doing is creating a resistance among the uneducated masses of Americans who could greatly benefit from reducing the amount of animal products they consume. After all, that is your goal right? To change the world through education?
And how about a little empathy for your fellow man? You know, there’s this theory that we’re actually just slightly more evolved than chimps. Maybe that would help.
You can also think about it this way: we aren’t separate from nature really. Just an extension of it. I know, it’s tough to imagine when your feet are so far removed from the ground as most of us are. But every living thing acts in it’s own self interest. It’s easy to think of nature as this calm, oasis of tranquility. But it’s not if your a squirrel, or a hawk, or an oak tree. They are all competing for real estate, food, sex, sunshine, and water. It’s like midtown Manhattan up in there. Everyone pursuing their own self interest, not one bit concerned with how it impacts the next guy.
And their bellies don’t hurt any more when empty than mine does. So thanks, but I’ll choose another code of ethics.