Digging Through The Dirt did a series of “How I Went Veg.”
It’s a four part series with essays from various veggies.
Here are some snippets from each essay, along with my comments following each:
From Jeff’s essay “The Long And Winding Road”:
“I was over at my sister’s, and she was serving hamburgers off the grill. I was eating one, but I had to point out we were eating dead cow, as she was calling it hamburger, and I was just pointing out the reality of what we were eating. She got mad at me because suddenly her daughter didn’t want to eat!”
Yup, that nasty truth haunts children. I know that from first-hand experience. But kids should know the truth. There’s no reason to lie and tell them that meat doesn’t come from animals or that animals don’t feel pain or that they’re killed kindly. Kids ought to know the truth. How can we expect to raise honest children if we won’t even tell them that hamburger is dead cow?
“in college, I wrote some papers AGAINST supporting animal rights. I read those papers today and see great, incredible ignorance on my part.” [...]
“It wasn’t until I read an article in Rolling Stone about factory pig farming that I decided that was it: I was going to be vegetarian. Reading of the atrocities in those farms made me realize I didn’t want any part of it … cutting out certain meats wasn’t enough; I had to cut them ALL out.”
I remember that article. I wonder if other people had similar reactions to it. (This image below comes from that article).
“It also helped that I have a dog … a golden retriever … and the idea of eating him would be unthinkable to me, and I realized that no other animal was less important than him, so why should I eat them?”
To me too, there are similarities between pet animals and farm animals. They’re all animals who experience pain and can give and receive love. And they’re all capable of being a part of my family or my circle of compassion.
In “Veganism Englightening” Josh wrote:
“Going vegan isn’t placing the tombstone on your grave, as many people seem to think. Rather, I think of it as enlightening. I now know a lot more about food than 99% of the people around me. Knowledge is power. My cooking skills have improved, and I appreciate the food I get to eat a lot more these days. The people I pity are the ones who can’t stop stuffing crap into their mouths to try to feel some sense of satisfaction. They seek the kind of satisfaction I enjoy every day. However, my satisfaction no longer hurts innocent animals.
“I do not regret going vegan. I only wish I had someone to guide me sooner. “
I completely agree. In fact, I’ve read some market studies about vegans and it turns out that vegans generally have twice as many cookbooks as nonvegans, they feel more confident cooking than nonvegans, and I’d bet they know more about nutrition on average than nonvegans. We almost have to learn at least a little bit about nutrition, so as to not get crucified by the anti-vegans.
In my own essay, “Veganism a Continual Process,” I wrote:
“I had very strong pro-animal beliefs since childhood, but those beliefs never successfully convinced me to go vegan. Truthfully, veganism can be tough sometimes, and those tough experiences clashed with my beliefs and ultimately kept me from going vegan for decades. Even though I knew plenty of excellent reasons for veganism — animal rights, environmental, health — I never successfully stayed vegan. I was an ethical vegetarian for years.” [...]
“It wasn’t meeting the animals or the people at Farm Sanctuary that helped “convert” me. It wasn’t the educational materials in the “People Barn.” It wasn’t the books and other resources in the shop. It was the mere request that I go vegan that helped turn me vegan.” [...]
“The critics of veganism who argue that it’s too inconvenient have a point. Veganism is not super simple. But it gets easier every day. The new vegan learns more and more every day. And new, tasty products or restaurant meals are born all the time. Life for a vegan gets easier all the time. Veganism is like a good relationship: The commitment and comfort grow and grow.”
Go to Digging Through The Dirt to read the fourth and final essay!