Friday, May 18, 2007

It's about the ethics, stupid!

This article and its comments, Vegetarian vs. Vegan? Some Sense 'Holier than Thou' Condescension, made me so mad this afternoon. There were various things they said that made me mad (which I will go into in the extended entry), but none of it is new. So, I was a bit confused about why this article got under my skin so much. Later this evening I realized, with great sadness, that this article concisely summed up the confusion that non-vegans have about vegans and made me realize how much people don't understand me, understand why I am vegan, and probably will never get it. I can explain it to friends, co-workers, etc. till I am blue in the face and most of them are just not going to get it.

The big problem, as I see it, is that a lot of people think vegan is a "diet". For me, being vegan is not at all about my diet. It is about my beliefs and ethics. I don't believe in killing other animals. Period. I don't believe in causing suffering to other beings. I don't distinguish or value one being over another. I don't think that a cow has less value as a being than a horse or a cat or a dog. To eat meat would go against everything I believe in. My veganism is about compassion and morals. I think it is morally wrong to kill another.

Am I "holier than thou" as the article proposes? Maybe. But it is not any different than a religious person believing that they are right about their morals. If I come across as holier than thou it is because I want others to see what I have seen and understand. People put on blinders about where their food comes from. They don't want to know [1]. They don't want you to even tell them about it. What are they afraid of? Are they afraid that if they found out the truth that they wouldn't be able to eat animals anymore? If that's true, then can they not see that their subconscious knows that eating animals is wrong?

[1] If anyone reading this, want to borrow my copy of Earthlings, I'd be happy to mail it to you. You can see for yourself.

More on this article in the extended entry...

1 comment:

  1. Great response to the article. It is frustrating when people focus on the food and the health aspects. That's not what veganism is about for most vegans!