“What I do is wrong, in spite of its acceptance by nearly 95 percent of the American population. I know it in my bones — even if I cannot yet act on it. Someday it must stop. Somehow we need to become the sort of beings who can see what we are doing when we look head on, the sort of beings who don’t weave dark, damning shrouds to sustain, with acceptance and celebration, the grossly unethical. Deeper, much deeper, we have an obligation to eat otherwise.

It might take incalculable generations of being hooked by and grappling with the ethics of slaughter to get there. But we really do need to get there — because again, what I am doing, what we are doing, is wrong, even terribly so.”

10 thoughts on “WHAT I DO IS WRONG

  1. I am as guilty of this as anyone (I am only a very part time vegetarian) but I honestly think that in 100 years we will look back at a time when we ate animals as analogous to any other basic rights violation issue (slavery, …).

    I would like to think we will come to that conclusion altruistically, but I am more cynical than that. In order to see this as the wrong that it is, I think we will see two development: (i) science around cognition in animals will make us more aware of their ‘humanity’ and (ii) synthetic meat alternatives will allow us to contemplate animal rights because we will have a simple meat alternative.

    1. Most vegans, including myself, weren’t born vegans. I ate animals products for the majority of my life and was a vegetarian for a decade before my 4 month switch to veganism. I understand the cynicism you feel; I feel it, anger, incredulousness, too, at times, which is when I need to back away and breathe and regain the patience and compassion for all this journey’s grown in me. I have to mull over this synthetic meat alternative…and remember that I ate a lot of faux meat when I first became a vegetarian. I get stuck on the word, synthetic. But then I couldn’t survive without my synthetic thyroid medication…food for thought. (pun intended)

      1. Here is my rationale for saying it will take both awareness raising and a synthetic meat alternative. Related to my work, i have studied how and why major social changes happens. One of the key lessons is that the vast majority of people (about 90%) see nothing wrong with their current lifestyle and resist change violently. Vegan, environmentalists and such are a very small minority who acknowledge their role in broader issues and make personal changes as a result. For the other 90%, they require alternatives to be VERY easy, even beneficial or sexy. For them, they need a VERY viable meat alternative, I believe.

        1. I agree that most humans, if pressed to change, want the easiest way to affect that change. I’ll add that the 99% non-veggies/vegans don’t want to see. Do you think they’re lining up to watch Food, Inc., Peaceable Kingdom, Blackfish, even Forks Over Knives (though probably more have watched that film), etc.? Uh, no. Why? My thinking is that once they see what they’ve made a conscious effort NOT to see, how can they justify the status quo? Don’t even get me started on the medical establishment and the startling lack of knowledge about even the health benefits of a plant-based diet. My ex father-in-law’s doctor happily endorsed the Atkins diet to lose weight quickly after QUADRUPLE bypass surgery–needed because his arteries were clogged by the very foods his doctor approved of him eating to lose weight! (Of course, he gained back all the weight he quickly lost, plus more.) I just had words with my rheumatologist about this. When I told him Kaiser-Permanente recommended their doctors suggest a vegan diet to all patients, my doctor said, “I wouldn’t.” All I could get out of him was vitamin deficiency nonsense. When I told him that my recent complete blood work up showed no vitamin or mineral deficiencies, but my mom’s did as an adherent to the standard American diet, he fell quiet on the subject.

          Anyhoo, I could blab on for days about this subject. I’m glad you and others are thinking about it. As for a sexy alternative, the next time you buy an organic cucumber and slice it, breathe in its scent. Intoxicating, to me at least 😉

          1. I totally agree that we will go to tremendous lengths to justify the status quo of our lifestyles. I agree that it applies to eating animals, but no less so to our environmental lifestyles or the degree to which we tolerate poverty while living in opulence. It can be depressing.

            As for the sexy alternative, I thought you were going in a different direction with that cucumber example (J)

          2. Absolutely. We humans are quite adept at turning a blind eye, myself included. I may be a vegan but I’m still a deeply flawed person.

            As for the cucumber, don’t think it didn’t occur to me! I’m reading up on tantra and channeling my sexual energy (read historic sex drought frustrations) in other positive, life-affirming ways 😉

          3. I’m glad I didn’t offend. And good luck with that re-channelling; in my experience our (at least my) sexual channels are pretty deeply engraved.

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