Slaughtered. Murdered. Deprived.
I’m very confident to say that if Pretz and Beans sold dog meat at ISKL, students would be disgusted and enraged that such a cute, harmless animal was being served as a meal. Yet somehow it’s okay for humans to eat cows, pigs, chickens and other animals that are just as innocent as the pets who live superabundant lives in our houses.
Why is it seen as acceptable and expected for us to slaughter one animal for our own selfish purposes, but cruel and unthinkable to do it to another animal that’s not much different? Going vegan, or eating fewer animal products, is the most healthy and humane way to live for the animals, the environment and ourselves.
Non-vegans say: “But vegans only eat salad!”
If I had a penny for every time someone has asked me, “Where do you get your protein?” I think I’d be a billionaire by now.
Many see vegans as crazy hippies who lack nutrients. In reality, basing meals on plant-based products is so much better for human health than the traditional meat and dairy diet that most humans have grown accustomed to. Copious amounts of studies keep confirming the health benefits of meat-free eating. According to the American Dietetic Association, “appropriately planned vegan diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases.” Compared with meat eaters, vegans are likely to have lower bad cholesterol, lower blood pressure, and lower body mass index, all of which are associated with longevity and reduced risk for many chronic diseases. The American Cancer Society states that vegetarians are up to 50% less likely to suffer from some cancers. Don’t you want to live disease free?
Non-vegans say: “Plants are living too, and vegans are KILLING THEM!”
No. Let’s get real here.
Factory farming for the food industry is the most horrifying and most common form of animal abuse worldwide. Raising and murdering animals for food is morally wrong no matter how “humanely” the animal is being treated. This is murder. Modern agriculture violates the animals’ rights to live in ordinary conditions. To make choices. To be free from panic and pain, and to have a normal life. These are all rights that we get as humans. What makes us more deserving than them?
94% of Americans agree that animals raised for food deserve to live free from abuse and cruelty. If you’re in you’re right mind, I bet you’d agree, too. Yet the majority of 10 billion animals raised for food in the US each year suffer conditions that consumers would despise if only they could see them. Is this really what we want? To be oblivious to the horrifying truth behind what’s on our plates? As a society, we need to take action upon this brutal reality. These creatures are significantly more intelligent and complex than many realize. How would you feel if your whole family was taken away from you? Only to be ruthlessly treated and slaughtered.
Nearly all the animals raised for food today spend their lives on factory farms. These creatures feel pain and fear just like we do. They’re disconnected from their families. Captured by the thousands into crummy cages. Mutilated without painkillers. Deprived of everything. No sunlight. No fresh air. Not until the day when they are forced onto trucks bound for the slaughterhouse. This is not okay.
Non-vegans say: “I would go vegan, but it’s just too hard!”
Trust me, I’ve been there. If you would’ve asked 13-year-old me what a vegan was, I would’ve responded the same way as most people, “a crazy and extreme person.” Well, I guess I’m now “crazy” and “extreme.” But what’s wrong with being crazy for something if it’s something positive? Nowadays, vegan alternatives offer pretty much everything. I’m not telling you to give up all animal products overnight (now that would be a bit extreme). I’m just saying that we should all try to make more conscious decisions about what we decide to put on our plate to make our world happier, healthier and of higher quality. After all, veggie burgers and almond milk are good, too.
- “Ethics – Animal Ethics: Eating Animals.” BBC, BBC, 2014, www.bbc.co.uk/ethics/animals/using/eating_1.shtml. Date of Access: March 13, 2019
- “Farm Animal Welfare.” ASPCA, www.aspca.org/animal-cruelty/farm-animal-welfare. Date of Access: March 13, 2019
- Harvard Health Publishing. “Becoming a Vegetarian.” Harvard Health, Oct. 2009, www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/becoming-a-vegetarian. Date of Access: March 15, 2019
- “Vegan Diets: Healthy and Humane.” PETA, 6 Jan. 2019, www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-food/animals-used-food-factsheets/vegan-diets-healthy-humane/. Date of Access: March 19, 2019
- “28 Jokes About Vegans To Keep Them From Talking About Being Vegans.” Runt Of The Web, 15 Feb. 2017, runt-of-the-web.com/jokes-about-vegans. Date of Access: April 14, 2019
- peta2. “Expectation vs. Reality: Factory Farms.” peta2, peta2, 2 Mar. 2017, www.peta2.com/news/expectation-reality-factory-farms/. Date of Access: April 14, 2019