The 14 Dumbest Things Meat Eaters Have To Deal With – Debunked

The original post was written by Andy McDonald and appeared on the Huffington Post website.

1. Being demonized by animal rights activists for eating meat.

We can eat meat and still be advocates for animal rights. Most meat eaters want animals to be treated as humanely as possible, and many of them take part in efforts to stop animal abuse just as vegetarians do. On the flip side, many fruits and vegetables come from farms that exploit low-wage migrant workers. Are you, veggie or meat eater, eating that produce? We’re talking about human beings, not animals. Vegetarians would probably want those workers to be paid a decent wage and treated fairly, right?

The author doesn’t understand the difference between animal welfare (treatment of animals) and animal rights (the rights of animals to be protected from exploitation and abuse by humans). Killing animals is animal abuse no matter how painless their death is, because humans don’t need animal products to live healthy lives.

Human exploitation on fruits and vegetable farms is not a justification for killing animals, in fact it is not even related in anyway. This logical fallacy is called Two Wrongs Make A Right. Everybody should want the workers to be paid and treated fairly, not just vegetarians. 

2. Taking flak for not treating animals exactly like people.

As higher brain functioned beings, we should be concerned about the welfare of animals, but the fact remains: animals are not people. In some sections of the globe, animals are treated as pets, loved and cared for almost as members of the family. In other sections, those same animals are used as food sources. Dogs, cats, guinea pigs. Here, that would be bizarre if not downright horrific to some, but that’s just a way of life in certain portions of the world. Different people, different upbringings, different diets.

We shouldn’t focus on the things that sets human animals apart from nonhuman animals. Human animals and nonhuman animals are sentient beings and can experience emotions like joy, fear, pain etc. We have more in common than sets us apart. We can’t use cognitive abilities or lack there of to discriminate or we would also have to kill and eat mentally handicapped human animals to be consequent. Nonhuman animals are aware of themselves and can feel emotions independent from their cognitive abilities just like human animals too.

By saying that different people from different cultures eat different animals is actually pointing out that the decision to eat certain animals but protect others is completely arbitrary. If we think that killing an elephant for food is horrific, why don’t we think that killing a pig for food is equally wrong?

3. “Do you have any idea what’s in that?”

Yeah. An animal.

We have been indoctrinated since childhood that we shouldn’t care about the animals we eat like pigs, chicken, cows and fish but most of us care deeply about most other animals in particular dogs and cats (remember Cecil the lion?). If you would never harm a dog for instance to put it on the BBQ why would you want to harm a pig or pay someone else to do it for you?

4. Being bombarded by grotesque “this is the reality of meat” photos.

We don’t mind a documentary once in a while, or even truth-revealing photos. We’re openminded people — remember, we eat meat and vegetables. But suggesting is a much better strategy than forcing it into a social media feed. Vegetarians don’t enjoy being ambushed because of their vegetarianism. Please, grant us the same courtesy.

Furthermore, most of us have never had romantic notions of what goes on in a slaughterhouse. We realize animals need to be killed and butchered in order for us to eat them, and that was never supposed to be a pretty affair. We also know that some actors in the meat industry are worse than others. You’re not blowing any minds here.

Eating meat is not a personal choice like choosing what kind of pants to wear for the day because it involves a victim who wanted to live. By choosing to eat animal flesh you are forcing your lifestyle onto sentient beings who have to pay with their lives.

Simply accepting the fact that slaughtering animals is horrific is not a justification for killing. We have access to plant-based foods all year round and can get all the nutrients we need without harming others. It is important to be exposed to what happens behind the closed doors of slaughterhouses so we can make an informed decision not to be part of this unnecessary, bloody and horrific killing machine.

5. “Do you know what that’s doing to your insides?”

Yeah, the meat is delivering tasty care packages to a hunger zone desperately in need of them. Listen, we know in large quantities meat isn’t the greatest thing for our health, but you know what? It tastes delicious and we’re not perfect. No one is. If happiness to you is carrying around hundred pound bags of kale and tofu to prepare for the CrossFit Games, go for it.

The WHO report clearly informs us that processed meat and red meat is carcinogenic.

Hunger zones aren’t being served by “tasty care packages”! Animals are inefficient converters of food.

It’s not about being perfect, it’s about reducing suffering and killing of animals as much as we can because we have a choice.

No vegan/vegetarian tries to cover their calorie needs with kale. Luckily there is rice, pasta, bread, legumes, potatoes, vegetables, kamut, teff, buckwheat, corn, nuts, seeds, fruits, berries etc.

6. Being expected to cater to vegetarian visitors, while vegetarians are never expected to cook meat for visiting meat eaters.

You choose to eat what you want. We choose to eat what we want. You’ve never heard the phrase “meat eater option.” What a juicy, flame-broiled double standard. You know it is still possible to cook meat without it getting into your stomach, right?

E.g. argument number 4.

7. “Ugh, you’re not actually going to eat that are you?”

Well, we were, until you decided to start lectur—no, you know what, meat forever:

E.g. argument number 4.

8. “Meat production does great harm to the environment!”

Absolutely, when profit and cost cutting are the primary concerns, any industry can become a breeding ground for environmental insensitivity and ignorance, and food production is particularly vulnerable to this. Feel free to write your congressman, boycott those companies or organize a protest. Your friend eating a cheeseburger after a long day at work is just trying to live his life.

This is another instance of the fallacy called Two Wrongs Make A Right! The environmental damages caused by animal agriculture can not be justified by saying that other industries are destructive as well and therefore we can remain complacent. Veganism is not the gold standard to fight environmental destruction but it’s at least something that everyone of us can do right now without big efforts. We can choose not to consume animal products and minimize our contribution to pollution and climate change.

9. “You can get all your protein from these non-meat things!”

Mmmm, yeah, like beans, lentils, chickpeas, quinoa and yogurt. Those things all sound good. But it begs the question: do you grocery shop in a retirement home? Or perhaps another place where teeth are optional?

So you rather do harm to animals than eat vegetables rich in protein because you somehow can use your teeth more? That’s probably the most asinine excuse that has ever been made to justify exploitation and killing.

10. “Vegetables” is a much longer word than “meat.”

Having to utter four syllables as opposed to just one? Sorry, this is the age of brevity, and people have short attention spans. Now, vegetarians might ask, “What does that have anything to do wi—” TOO LATE WE’RE ALREADY EATING OUR STEAKS.

Pure desperation. Even if this was supposed to be some sort of joke. It’s lame.

11. Having to accommodate vegetarian friends when going out to eat.

Vegetarians are not the only ones with a limited number of places to eat. As meat eaters going out with vegetarian friends who insist on eating a real meal, we have fewer places to eat, too. And we don’t always mind making the sacrifice. Hey, they’re our friends. We accept them for who they are. Most of the time.

Again, eating meat is not a personal choice because there is a third party involved. The animals have no say and no choice but to die for your culinary pleasure. The vegan is not complicit in the harming and killing of nonhuman animals for her/his meal. Non-violence usually doesn’t require acceptance from others.

12. Having to explain bacon.

It’s hard to understand if you don’t eat it. Bacon is really great and meat eaters are not shy about expressing their love for it. We absolutely respect that it doesn’t fit your diet, but don’t ask us to explain its powerful and delicious magnetism.

Sensory pleasure is never justification to kill a sentient being, otherwise cannibalism could be also justified with that. The trivial interest for culinary pleasure never supersedes the basic interest of survival of any sentient being.

13. Being lectured on how humans were never meant to eat meat.

Humans evolved into the superior species of the planet in part because of eating meat. That’s right. Eating meat played a significant role in making our brains larger, as well as increasing our social and communication skills. Also our digestive systems are built for it. It’s safe to say most people are fairly disgusted when animals are abused, but it’s ironic when a vegetarian voices well thought out reasoning against the killing of animals. Because without the hunting and meat-eating portion of evolution, they might not have been physiologically able to.

There are new findings that say that starchy vegetables made our brains bigger. Regardless what human animals had to do in the past because of scarcity or climate to survive, our lives are much different now in comparison to people’s lives 50 years ago let alone the lives of people 10000 years ago.

We have the choice not to inflict harm onto others. Why would we choose to kill if we didn’t have to?

14. Being called lazy or ignorant for not analyzing every aspect of where our food comes from.

To be blunt, some people just don’t have the time to think about where their food comes from or what’s happening to farm animals. In a perfect world, we would love for there to be zero animal suffering, 100 percent work efficiency and to see people living longer and healthier lives than ever before. But the cold hard truth is that 46.5 million people in the U.S. live in poverty. About 22 million people are underemployed. One in six people in the U.S. is food insecure, a nice way of saying they sometimes go hungry. These people don’t necessarily have the luxury to worry about where their food comes from, or what’s in it, or how it will be packaged and produced. Their most pressing concern is, “Will we have food?”

No one can ever know everything but once you learn that your actions cause harm to others and that you easily can avoid that, why would you choose to continue?

The beauty of veganism is that it’s actually cheaper to eat a plant-based diet than the standard american diet (SAD).

There are about 800’000’000 people worldwide starving. Only 55% of calories from crops actually are consumed by people directly. The rest is fed to animals which are very inefficient calorie converters so lots of the energy is metabolized by the animal and doesn’t get transformed into nutrients. In other words, we could feed 4 billion people more if we didn’t feed animals with crops.

 

 

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Feeble attempts to justify animal use

Below you’ll find a response to Collin Nevel’s attempt to justify animal use on Non-Dairy Kerry’s FaceBook post from the 4th of December 2015. Collin’s original text is posted after this response.

Dear Collin Nevel,

You are presenting a false dichotomy. There isn’t a choice to make between the killing of 60 billion animals annually or letting all those animals running free tomorrow. The world won’t adopt a 100%  plant-based diet all of a sudden. All we have to do is stop breeding farm animals and phase out animal agriculture over a certain period of time. The only reason why there are billions of farm animals in the first place is because farmers and corporations are breeding them.

Ecosystems have been regulating themselves for millions of years, no human interaction was ever required. Why are you concerned about the well being of deer when at the same time you are complicit in the mass killing of farm animals? The answer to this question is that you make profit with farm animals, that’s why you don’t think twice getting them killed.

Humans sadly industrialized mass killing for profit. The meat, dairy and egg industries heavily influence public opinion by white and green washing devastating farm practices with multi million dollar ad campaigns. Don’t lie to yourself by saying that we take what is already there, that’s simply false.

Almost 800’000’000 people on the planet are starving partially because of animal agriculture. Only 55% of crop calories are eaten by people directly ( http://www.vox.com/2014/8/21/6053187/cropland-map-food-fuel-animal-feed ). We could feed 4 billion more people with existing crop land ( http://discover.umn.edu/news/food-agriculture/existing-cropland-could-feed-4-billion-more ). Please tell me again how animal agriculture feeds a starving world population ( http://www.fao.org/fileadmin/user_upload/animalwelfare/HSI–The%20Impact%20of%20Industrialized%20Animal%20Agriculture%20on%20World%20Hunger.pdf ).

The concept behind animal welfare is that animals should be treated humanly while they are alive before getting slaughtered because it’s assumed that we need animal products in our diets to be healthy. This assumption however is false, humans don’t require animal products to live healthy lives. Since consuming animal products is completely unnecessary, we have to shift our focus away from animal welfare towards animal rights. In other words our main concerns should be about animal use which is not justified due to lack of necessity. We have been brainwashed since child hood that killing animals is normal, natural and necessary. We have become blind to this indoctrinated ideology called carnism ( https://youtu.be/o0VrZPBskpg ).

Traditions can never justify unethical actions (appeal to tradition fallacy). Slavery used to be a tradition, child labor used to be a tradition, women were traditionally not allowed to vote, genital mutilation of girls is still a tradition etc. Just because something is a tradition doesn’t mean we have to continue practice it. Do you think we should continue those traditions? I don’t think so!

There are plant-based substitutes for cheese, meat, eggs, sausage, cakes etc. In case you haven’t noticed the demand for plant-based foods is growing by the day. Business leaders are investing in companies that are making plant-based foods because it will be the future. ( http://www.economist.com/news/technology-quarterly/21645497-tech-startups-are-moving-food-business-make-sustainable-versions-meat ). Please don’t forget that processed meat and read meat cause cancer ( http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/2015/10/26/processed-meat-and-cancer-what-you-need-to-know/ ).

By comparing the killing of innocent animals who never done anything wrong to murderers and rapists on death row makes you look completely out of touch with reality. Killing without necessity is wrong no matter what.

You don’t seem to know the difference between getting killed and dying. You won’t be killed to “benefit” another species. Your statement is highly fallacious. Killing doesn’t show respect to the victim being killing, it’s the exact opposite.

 

Collin Nevel’s text on Non-Dairy Kerry’s FaceBook page:

 

Non-Dairy Kerry, you truly believe that if we just let them run wild they will be better off than they are now? Look at the feral pig problem in Texas they run amok they’re everywhere. overpopulated which causes them to suffer hunger and shelter issues. Not to mention the fact that they will still be on this planet contributing to the climate change, hunger, disease, air and water weight pollution issues just as you claim they do now. Look at the wild deer population in Wisconsin, unchecked, CWD and other herd specific diseases would over take the entire population if it weren’t up to human intervention. Hunters that come across deer infected with CWD or other diseases or mutations call them from the herd to ensure a more prosperous population for their down the road. You could argue that natural selection would take care of this but at what greater cost to the entire population? But I digress, if cows were to run wild wouldn’t it be fair to say they would eat, pollute, and take up just as much land resources as they do now? So say we do end animal agriculture, what happens to the animals then? Are they not still here? Do they not still utilize as many resources of the do now?

We are only trying to benefit by creating something out of what is already there, that is, feeding a starving world population. You can argue it however you want but you cannot deny the fact that the world is starving for food, there a third world countries where people go to bed hungry every day.

Furthermore, if animals truly wanted to run wild then why is it that when they break out of my pasture do they return to where they know there is food, water, and shelter? It would seem to me that my cows are perfectly happy where they are, they produce plenty of milk and as you should well no, said cows do not produce very much milk. You speak as though the cows are in terrible misery and I want nothing more than to be away from where they are. Every morning I look at my house and see nothing that indicates that. Until you can show me solid proof that cows do not wish to be milked fed and sheltered everyday, then I suggest you hold back on your wild claims. And as far as the Holocaust goes, I can see parallels between what you think and what the Holocaust was, however I would say it’s very far fetched idea to believe that one stems from the other. Also, did you read what I wrote I stated that animals are a RESOURCE for many things. They create components for many things, just like everything else has components inanimate or otherwise. And to say animal agriculture can be completely eliminated by giving up anything is completely ludicrous. Do you have any idea how much culture revolves around animal products? Feta cheese, gyros, Hasenpfeffer, Swiss cheese, hot dogs, the cheese that goes on every pizza, the cream that makes cream puffs at the State Fair, the butter on English muffins, the eggs in every hearty breakfast, the bacon craze that has swept the nation, lumpia a traditional Filipino dish, sushi a favored Asian delicacy, the list goes on. Can you really say the bile completely eliminating animal agriculture that everything will be so much better? Look at how much culture is based just around food. Also, i wont lie, my family sends one cow per year to the local butcher who ends their life in such a manner that it would be considered a  more humane death than any death row inmate would have. But do you know what? That cow provides for my family, my grandparents, my aunts and uncles, and their children. And I know when I die, I want my death to be able to provide for those I care about and for those who care for me just as that one cows does. So to say we treat them less than human is really an inaccurate statement, as you can see, I give them every respect that I give myself and beyond

Response: AN OPEN LETTER TO VEGANS: WHY CAN’T WE BE FRIENDS?

Dear Farmers/Ranchers,

Thank you for growing food for people (not to be confused with raising animals to be killed for food). You are very important for providing quality food for all of us.

I believe you when you say that you love your animals and that you take good care of them. I believe you that you feel sad sending them off to eventually get killed. The reason why I believe you is simple. You are convinced that eating animal flesh, secretions and eggs is normal, natural and necessary. You are convinced that breeding animals to be killed for food is the only way to make sure people can have a healthy diet and enough food on the table.

“Why can’t we just grow crops and feed the world that way? Because realistically, there is not enough space on the planet that is capable of growing crops to feed 7.3 billion people, especially not if we are not allowed to use genetically modified crops that are capable of growing more food with fewer resources.”

The statement above is wrong and science has provided a completely different picture of the actual circumstances. The university of Minnesota found that we could feed 4 billion more people with the current crop land. We simply have to stop growing crops for farm animals and start growing food for people directly.

http://discover.umn.edu/news/food-agriculture/existing-cropland-could-feed-4-billion-more

GMO crops do not provide more food with fewer resources used. Actual science informs us that this is simply not true.

http://www.ucsusa.org/food_and_agriculture/our-failing-food-system/genetic-engineering/failure-to-yield.html#.VkOLNnr9eK0

http://www.ewg.org/agmag/2015/03/claims-gmo-yield-increases-don-t-hold

Monsanto’s pesticide Roundup which is used on GMO crops and contains Glyphosate is linked to cancer.

http://www.nature.com/news/widely-used-herbicide-linked-to-cancer-1.17181

“Crops and livestock together is the only way we can hope to feed a hungry and growing world. And we take that responsibility deadly seriously, knowing without us, the world will starve.”

Growing food is great but raising “food” increases scarcity and hunger at least these are the findings of a UN report.

http://www.unep.org/resourcepanel/Portals/24102/PDFs/PriorityProductsAndMaterials_Report.pdf

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2010/jun/02/un-report-meat-free-diet

“And we care for our animals, making sure that they live as comfortably as possible while they are with us. We care for them when they are sick. And we make sure when they are sent to slaughter that it is as swift and painless as possible.”

We humans don’t need animal products to be healthy, in fact we are healthier without meat, milk and eggs. That makes breeding and killing animals for food completely unnecessary and we have to move our focus away from animal welfare towards animal rights. Without necessity for animal products we can and should choose not to get animals killed. A plethora of clinical studies show that plant-based diets are superior.

http://scuzzbopper.github.io/

“At the end of the day, we are just trying to do the best we can with the resources we have to give the public the food choices they want.”

Unfortunately the public has been misinformed by the meat, dairy and egg industry for decades that animal products were essential to our wellbeing. Recently also farmers and ranchers have chimed in to spread misinformation and omit facts like the open letter I am responding to. It is imperative to educate the public about facts and science. We can all choose not to be part of unnecessary exploitation and killing and we all be healthier doing so. If we really cared about given resources we wouldn’t waste them on breeding, feeding and killing animals for food instead we would reduce the pressure on the environment by only growing food for people. Because without a healthy environment we are all doomed.

http://www.cowspiracy.com/facts/

We all can be friends. There is room for everybody on the table enjoying plant-based foods. We will be able to feed even 9 billion people if we make changes to our diet and choose a vegan lifestyle. Farmers are great people, doing a great job but it’s time to phase out animal agriculture so nobody goes hungry and to mitigate climate change.

Your vegan friends

P.S.: If you think GMOs are safe and necessary why not simply label GMO products?

Below you find the original text posted here: http://jessicaadecker.com/2015/11/10/an-open-letter-to-vegans-why-cant-we-be-friends/

Dear Vegans, Vegetarians, Non-GMO and Organic Supporters, and other members of the anti-conventional agriculture public,

First off let me say:

Thank you.

Thank you for your opinions, thank you for joining the agricultural debate, and thank you for sharing your passion about how your food is raised, just like I do. If there’s anything we can agree on, it’s that we are both passionate about what we believe in.

Now, let me introduce myself. I’m not from a traditional “farm family” that relies on farm income, but I do come from a long line of farmers. My family started raising cattle 5 or 6 years ago, after retiring from 20+ years raising show pigs for FFA projects, and we’ve grown cotton and wheat (the two main crops in my area) for years. We raise breeding cattle, meaning that our stock doesn’t go directly into the food supply, but is instead sold to other producers to breed with to improve genetic lines. Our herd is small, only around 50, and we know every single one of them. We don’t name them all, but the first cows we bought and their offspring all have nicknames.

We love our cows. I know that may be hard for you to believe, since eventually each of them will be sent to the slaughterhouse to join the food supply. However, we take our role as keepers of the cattle very seriously, and strive to ensure that they are treated with the utmost respect and care while they are in our possession. We don’t take great joy in sending cattle to slaughter, like many might think. I don’t know any farmer that secretly can’t wait to see an animal’s life end. However, it is our job, our responsibility, our duty, to make sure that you and your children have enough food to survive. I know, I know. Why can’t we just grow crops and feed the world that way? Because realistically, there is not enough space on the planet that is capable of growing crops to feed 7.3 billion people, especially not if we are not allowed to use genetically modified crops that are capable of growing more food with fewer resources. It’s easy to say that these are not issues when you can sit at your dinner table with a plate full of food. However, farmers see the devastating effects of what happens when there’s drought or disease or pests. Crops and animals lost means that much less food for a hungry person.

Crops and livestock together is the only way we can hope to feed a hungry and growing world. And we take that responsibility deadly seriously, knowing without us, the world will starve.

However, that doesn’t mean our only focus is to get as much out of every animal and every crop. We also recognize that respecting the land means that it will be able to produce fruitful crops for years to come, so we try not to overwork or overgraze fields, we put nutrients back into the soil, and we utilize technology and agricultural practices to minimize moisture loss and soil erosion. We care for the land, because without it, we are out of a job. And we care for our animals, making sure that they live as comfortably as possible while they are with us. We care for them when they are sick. And we make sure when they are sent to slaughter that it is as swift and painless as possible.

I know there are those out there who don’t care for their animals at the high standards that we should expect them to, and quite frankly, I am glad when they are called out for mistreating animals, because that should never be excused. However, I would just ask that you try not to generalize all farmers, and say we are all just like that, because my family tries very hard to care for our animals as best as we can and I would call someone out just as soon as you would if I saw them abusing their animals. I appreciate your effort to stop animal cruelty, I do, and believe that many of your hearts are in the right place. Just don’t throw my family under the bus while you do it.

This is Lucky. Her mom kept kicking her off, so we cared for and bottle fed her until she was old enough to join the herd.
This is Lucky. Her mom kept kicking her off, so we cared for and bottle fed her until she was old enough to join the herd.
At the end of the day, we are just trying to do the best we can with the resources we have to give the public the food choices they want. We care about the safety of our food because we are eating it too, and feeding it to our families. We really aren’t just a bunch of big corporations trying to make as much money as possible. The biggest cattle producers around my home area are families, with multiple generations working on the farm, trying to find success just like you are in your occupation. Please don’t think we don’t care about consumer opinions, because we do. We are consumers just like you.

I truly hope we can be friends. I think there is room for each of us at the table, each providing a unique perspective and talent that can drive the others to be better. Mr/Ms Vegan and Vegetarian, please continue to help us find the best ways to make sure our livestock are treated respectfully, while treating us, the farmer, respectfully as well. Mr/Ms Non-GMO and Organic Supporter, I know we don’t raise our animals and crops the same way, but I fully support the fact that you are reaching a group that so desperately wants your products. And I’ll be honest– I love organic milk, it’s all I buy. But I’m going to stick to my GMO cotton for now. Hopefully, between the two of us, we can meet the needs of all the consumers out there for whatever they are looking for, and we can do it together.

I’m so glad we had this talk. I know that with open dialogue about the problem areas and working together to find solutions, we can make people feel safe about what they are buying from the store, make sure the land and livestock are treated the best way possible, and continue to feed this big, amazing world.

Sincerely,

Your friend the Ag Producer from West Texas.

Milk: Violence Extraordinaire

A dairy farmer wrote the following to the image above:

Wow! What is really sad is the lies above and the fact that you believe them. I do have to admit it is probably because you are misinformed and more than likely never seen a cow in real life.

You don’t see me throwing out lies and misinformation about your life style as a vegan. You are attacking a job that I do everyday 365 days a year. My cows are put before any of my needs and I hate to admit it my family’s. Each of my cows have a name and I celebrate when a calf is born and a mourn when one passes they are all family members.
I’m not asking you to change your lifestyle but I am asking you to be more informed. Go to the country and talk to a farmer, experience their lifestyle before you judge it. See first hand the care that each one of these men and women have for their animals. Walk a mile in our shoes before you judge us or accuse us anything.

Here the response by Non-Dairy-Kerry:

Dairy farmers like yourself always claim to love their animals and that they treat them like non-human family members. Do you also forcefully impregnate human family members? Would you take a newborn human baby away from his mother to sell his body for profit? Would you send any human family member to slaughter for profit? No, you would never ever do that, so stop claiming that your animals are even close to being “family” members.

The only reason why you have these animals is to make money from their secretions and bodies. Hard work doesn’t justify exploitation and killing of living beings and neither does making money with them.

If your lifestyle harms others (in this case animals in your “care”), I have every right to criticize your actions regarding that. Vegans try their best reducing the harm their actions cause other sentient beings. Veganism is not perfect but it’s the minimum decency we should posses towards animals, humans, environment, world hunger etc. What could you possibly have against an ideology that’s about respecting all sentient beings and tries to keep them free from harm?

You claim to have feelings and emotions for your animals but yet it is you that inflicts harm upon them. It is you that sends them away to get killed for money. If you truly loved your animals you would stop breeding them for profit and became a farm sanctuary that rescued animals from being stabbed in the neck.

There are some animal farmers that have realized that they were lying to themselves, like you are now, and stopped breeding and killing animals. If they were able to change, why can’t you?

http://freefromharm.org/animal-products-and-ethics/former-meat-dairy-farmers-became-vegan-activists/

A carnist’s view debunked

Carnist statement:

You do realise that without the use of animals in agriculture we wouldn’t be here right now. Without them our ancestors would not have survived. Cows, sheep, pigs…they have been domesticated over hundreds of years. They can’t just be released into the wild to ‘live free’. I get where you’re coming from, you see the videos produced by animal rights activists and think that what you see is common practice. When in actual fact it probably took hundreds of under cover operations to find the material that was needed to produce one video. Animal agriculture employs hundreds of thousands if not millions of people across the world, and they feed billions of people. What happens to them without access to these animals. You (okay I’m not targeting you personally I mean people of your thinking in general, okay even that didn’t sound right) think that we live in a perfect world where fruits and vegetables and nuts will grow in abundance wherever they are planted and they don’t need water. But the reality is that people around the world rely on cows and goats for example to sustain their family. Land in some parts of the world might be able to sustain animals but it won’t grow food for people. I’m not making excuses for sustaining animal agriculture, I’m trying to give you the facts. And i am sorry if you think otherwise.

 
 
Vegan response:
 
let me address each of your points.

– Although in the past, humans ate some meat due to calorie scarcity, in the developed world today, we have more than enough calories at our disposal, so animals are no longer necessary in our diet. The offic
ial dietetic associations on three continents endorse a vegan diet, and in comparative population studies such as Adventist 2, vegans outlive meat-eaters – so some of us are *not* here because of animal agriculture.

– Unfortunately, every time undercover investigators point a camera at a slaughterhouse, factory farm, auction, or transport operation, they find horrid abuse. There are now thousands of videos showing horrid cruelty all over the world. Moreover, there are many ex-employee accounts and mainstream media investigations that support this. In “Slaughterhouse” by Gail Eisnitz, workers talk about how they beat pigs and watched them writhe in pain in scalding tanks. The Washington Post found that some cows were still alive as they bellies were ripped open and limbs sawed off. The USDA’s own inspection reports reveal that rabbits screamed as blades cut into them. The very nature of some common animal ag practices causes suffering: Chickens are bred to be so top-heavy that some collapse and die before they’re killed at seven weeks old. In turkey breeding facilities, one man holds the struggling turkey down while another forces semen into her. Nose rings that hurt the calf every time she tries to nurse are common in so-called “humane” farms. Pigs’ testicles are cut off without painkillers. Veal calves are stuck in small dark pens. Animals are legally transported in sweltering weather for over 24 hours with no water, rest, or food. I could go on and on. Even on small farms investigators find injured animals receiving no care, sometimes starving to death – the sanctuary where I volunteer has rescued some of them. It is horrid an a hundred ways and I dearly hope some of this causes you to rethink your diet.

– There will be no loss of employment if everyone goes vegan. We’ll still need farmers to create food. There may be a drop in heart surgeon job openings, I admit.

– In some areas of the world, they still need animal products. But not here. Also, animal agriculture sometimes greatly disrupts local populations and worsens huger problems. In Ethiopia, much of their staple teff crop has been taken over by feedcrops fed to animals that are killed and exported to the West. 70 percent of the destroyed Amazon – home to indigenous human populations as well as thousands of species – are being used for cattle ranching and feedcrops. The UN, the Worldwatch Institute, and a growing number of public health agencies urge us to reduce our meat consumption in order to feed a growing human population, because plant foods are more efficient. The biggest user of water in drought-stricken California is alfalfa that is fed to cattle.

Virtually all animals raise for their flesh, milk, or eggs are bred to grossly overproduce – which causes chronic and acute health problems – and are killed very young. Most are denied a mother or pulled from her very early – causing pain and distress for both mother and child. I’ve gotten to know many rescued farmed animals at the sanctuary – they are beautiful beings who want to live.

There are many compelling reasons to replace animal products in one’s diet (and wardrobe). I hope this is food for thought.

If You CARE About Food – We Need to Talk. (Responses)

The following are four responses to a blog post by Wendell Schumm (https://wendellschumm.wordpress.com/2015/05/01/if-you-care-about-food-we-need-to-talk/). You can find a copy of his text after all responses.


What makes you think that because someone disagrees with you taking an animals life and says so on a public forum, that they are a radical extremist?

Since when did not killing become an extreme point of view?
I am a vegan, that means I live happily and healthily consuming no animal products whatsoever.
Animal ag constantly tells me on TV in shops, in magazines and with targeted advertising that I need to consume their product… I don’t and neither does anyone else.

It’s a choice, simple as that.

Kill animals or don’t kill animals.

Does #farm365 explain to the consumer that by drinking milk or eating butter and cheese, they are inadvertently supporting the veal industry. Or that by eating eggs they are sending millions of male chicks to being ground up alive?

The consumer has a right to know and I intend to shine a light on the processes animal ag would rather stay hidden so that the consumer can make an informed decision.

It may suit you to believe that I and others like me have it in for you. I don’t and I couldn’t give a toss whether or not you continue to eat meat. But please stop saying that it’s necessary or good for you as its neither.

I’m sorry if a handful of people on a social media site have made you write such a biased and sensationalised post. If you and the rest of animal ag actually told the truth about your ‘product’ then we wouldn’t have to.

For the 259,200,000.00 animals that were slaughtered today and every day I am truly sorry that Wendell and others like him will not at least consider a cruelty free lifestyle. Let’s hope that some reading this are not so close minded.
I work, pay taxes and a mortgage for my own house, have raised a family and am a normal functioning member of society. I once ate meat, I don’t now and haven’t done so for 20 years. If I can do it anyone can.

Author: IJ


“I am one of the “extremist ARAs” you refer to above. I’m in my mid-40s, with a University degree, Executive Director for Non-AR organization – a job that allows me to feed my daughter and myself very well. I am active in the local community, too, to improve the lives of the people around me. And I do AR activism.

Like many vegans, I am sorry I didn’t know about the ugly side of animal agriculture earlier. When I found out, I felt lied to.

A four-year vegan, I try to help people see in the hope that they will be grateful – not right away, but maybe later. I get quite a bit of positive feedback from people that I’ve inspired to move towards veganism so I feel I’m on the right track.

In no way am I on #farm365 to “pick a fight” as you suggest with farmers. Just like farmers, we are there to educate. And learn.

In real life, I have never before been called a “most extreme, militant” spokesperson – in fact, the thought amuses me. I’m not sure why you are doing that now, unless it is to distract from the issue we are raising. I’ve seen abusive comments by vegans and farmers alike on #farm365. A lot more name-calling on the farmer side though, up to outright harassment and impersonation to intimidate activists. It does neither side justice to compare the best of one group with the worst of the other. I wish we would all stop doing that.”

Author: Brenda

I feel very flattered by this blog post. You see, I am one of the ‘vegan extremists’ you describe. The fact that such a few people can spur you into writing a post like this on your blog is very inspiring. It means we are being noticed on social media and people are seeing both sides of animal agriculture. The pretty and the not so pretty.

We are here on #farm365 to show the public the full story of animal agriculture. Most of us have been brought up to eat meat from an early age, our parents brainwashed along the way by what is supposedly ‘normal’. Each one of us Vegans have at some point in our lives thought, what the hell am I doing? I love animals! Each one of us consumed animals believing the biggest lie of all times, that farm animals are killed humanely. Humane? What is that word? It certainly does not describe any farm animals demise at a slaughterhouse or should we call it by its proper name..an abbatoir.

Consumers of animal products could almost be convinced their meat walked to the slaughter line voluntarily, if the spin is to be believed, the animal agriculture industry puts out! Of course this is not true! Every animal wants to live, just like us humans. I find it very sad that the animal agricultural farmers can turn a blind eye to the suffering that the animals they rear endure. Even to go as far as to say ‘we love our animals’. I love my dog and my cats but I would never eat them.

I fail to understand why farmers won’t show the full truth of what the animals suffer on #farm365 Could it be that if the meat eating public saw the true picture they might not want to carry on being omnivores?

I don’t put the blame entirely on farmers as, like alot of people, they are also victims of corporates.

Rescuing ex battery hens turned me into a vegetarian. Six years later the UK badger cull opened my eyes to the dairy industry and the barbarity of the disposable lives of male calves. Not to mention the sheer barbarity of being a female and made to repeat the same cycle as her mother..a slave for milk. This is when I turned vegan.

If this explanation makes me a Vegan Extremist because I oppose the slavery and abuse of all animals then I thank you for the compliment.

Author: Sabrina

I care quite a bit about food. I’ve been vegan for over 13 years and really love the abundance of healthy food, some of which I never knew existed. I also care about animals, people and the environment.

I go on farm365 primarily to encourage people to have compassion for animals, and certainly don’t refer to animals as “food”. I see ARA (Animal Rights Activist) being misunderstood as being about Animal Welfare, i.e. the treatment of animals, quite a lot. ARAs believe animals have rights which, for me, includes the right not to be used and killed unnecessarily. So, it’s not about how they are being treated and killed (which, of course, is important too) but that they are used and killed at all. The bottom line is we don’t need to kill animals for food.

Also the word “abuse” seems to be misunderstood. Wikipedia states: “Cruelty to animals, also called animal abuse or animal neglect, is the human infliction of suffering or harm upon non-human animals, for purposes other than self-defense or survival.”
We do not need to eat meat, dairy, eggs or wear leather, wool or otherwise harm and kill animals for food or clothing. It’s not self-defence and it’s not for survival. That is why I see the farming and slaughtering of animals as abuse. So, even the best farmer who cares, certainly an improvement on the industrial farming, still engages in abuse. I realise that’s quite a shift to make and is not meant in any way as an insult to farmers or people who consume animals.

I used to consume animals and say I cared about them. I did care, as I believe you when you say farmers care, but only now do I realise that I was misguided. How can one care about someone and then eat them? It makes no sense. We are taught not to think about it but to look only at the pictures of happy cows and separate them from that product we call meat/dairy etc. I wish I’d been shown the reality sooner. I grew up in one of the largest dairy regions of rural Australia, a part of the country that also had plenty of cattle farms. I have friends with huge cattle stations. I took agriculture as a subject in school. The school had its own farm and we also did work experience on farms as part of the course. So it’s not ignorance of farming or “where food comes from” that explains my lack of knowledge about what I refer to as “the reality”. It’s more a paradigm shift and aligning my values (caring for animals) with my actions (not killing them) that I think is real and authentic, which I wasn’t being before.

That’s what I’m on farm365 to do, not to “pick a fight” but to inform those people who see pretty pictures of lambs on straw and wide eyed cows to look a bit deeper into it. To connect those individual lives to their untimely deaths and ask themselves if it’s worth it. I’m trying to give those animals a voice that is being denied them. Farmers start using terms like crops, harvesting and processing. Why? To disguise even further the fact that a group of individuals will be rounded up and slaughtered. And for what? We don’t need it!

I certainly don’t attack anyone and your analogy between farmers and fire fighters is way off. To use your analogy, which doesn’t fit, we are not attacking the fire fighters, we are informing people that the fire fighters are the ones lighting the fires.

If you see my attempts at reducing violence and increasing compassion as “extremist” and “militant” so be it. This is not about me.

Author: Veganart

If You CARE About Food – We Need to Talk.

I have been and will continue to be  a vocal supporter of livestock farmers and have been disturbed by the confrontation and criticism that they have been subjected to by animal rights activists (ARA) on social media. On the other hand I have tried to keep an open mind and at least consider where the ARA points of view are coming from. Using #farm365 as an example, we have, in my opinion a battle between the very best representatives of the farming community and the most extreme, militant spokespeople from the ARA side. That being said, the one thing these radicals have in common with farmers – they care about their cause and want to share it with others.

In the extremely unlikely event (and I mean, winning the lottery, pigs fly unlikely) that the militant ARA’s on social media ask for my advice, here’s where I would start: You are picking the wrong fight! If you are genuinely interested in improving the lives and welfare of animals, this is not the group you should be alienating. The #farm365 Tweeters and other farmers who are trying to engage the public take their responsibilities as stewards seriously and- get ready for it -really do CARE about the well being of the animals on their farms. Attacking this group is, literally, like picketing a volunteer fire station because you have a moral objection to to burning tires. The farmers who are taking the time to share their experiences and pictures are not doing it for money, glory or fame. It takes time and effort to do what they do. They are putting their private lives on display to help people connect with where their food comes from and to understand what’s involved in feeding a growing population. Invariably, these farmers are opening themselves up to criticism and ridicule, not because they think it would be a fun way to spend a Friday night, but because they CARE enough to take that risk.

Now for the tough part – farmers aren’t perfect. The harsh reality is that there are farms that need some work- just like there are pet owners who neglect their pets and there are vegans who vandalize farms and cops that abuse their authority and bad bankers and bad priests and bad teachers and…. I think you get the point. The good news is that the overwhelming majority of farmers provide an excellent level of care to the point where domestic animals are better cared for than any point in history and, arguably, better off than their wild counterparts. The problem is that even if 99.99% of farmers are doing an excellent job, we, as an industry have to answer for the 0.01% that leave us open to criticism. Anytime it appears that we are hiding facts or covering up abuse, our credibility takes a hit.

In my line of work I often review feeding trials to evaluate performance and health benefits of different feed ingredients or additives. Some of the things I look for are the “negative” trial results. If the ingredient  being tested wins every single trial, I question the validity of the testing methods. It’s this thinking that makes me wonder if the same is true of how our industry is viewed by the ARAs? If we claim that ALL farmers are in the right ALL of the time will they automatically assume that we are all in willing collusion to cover up abuse? The difficulty is – can we really expect a logical response or reasonable dialogue at this point?

All of the livestock groups have certification programs in place focusing on both food safety and animal welfare, which is intended to assure the public that we are raising the bar and ensuring best practices. A couple of examples are ProAction Initiative from Dairy Farmers of Canada and CPC CQA program. As with any audited program, the expectations must be clearly outlined and measurable. Equally important, the consequences for failing to meet expectations must be understood and the program needs some teeth, with specific penalties for producers who fail to meet a minimum standard. Often, these programs will offer a financial incentive to achieve a high standard and If the audit process is transparent, legitimate and clearly tied to the price paid by the customer, results in consistent improvements.On the flip side, a program can be designed with standards so low that virtually all producers meet them. The result is a program that has virtually no value and does not last. In a logical, business setting, transparent measurables give credibility to the program and demonstrate to the customer realistic objectives and improvements.

In theory, my argument makes sense. In reality, I have less confidence that ARA’s are interested in logical, fact based explanations for how we are improving animal welfare. I suspect that there are many ARA’s that really are interested in productive dialogue, but I worry about the small percentage who are willing to go to extremes like spreading mis-information and harassing honest, hard working farmers. Animal welfare is important. So is the business of feeding the world. We are lucky that 99.99% of farmers CARE about both.

Response to FarmOn Foundation’s open letter to activists

This is a response to the following post (you can find the full text at the end of this article): https://www.facebook.com/farmonfan/posts/10153305918259874:0

Dear Farmers,

Farmers are very important as they provide plant-based food options for consumers and even activists. Activists don’t hate farmers – we don’t hate anyone – but animal agriculture is detrimental to the planet, inefficient at feeding people and kills 56 billion animals per year, not out of necessity, but for culinary pleasure. Humans don’t require animal products to live healthy lives thus animal farming is unnecessary.

Farmers have demonstrated over and over again in many one on one chats I have had with them on Twitter that they are afraid of answering simple questions about controversial topics like, dehorning, castration, tail docking, teeth clipping, ear notching, branding, debeaking, shredding of male chicks, separating calves from their mothers, gestation crates, artificial insemination (AI), unnatural feed (corn, barley, soy etc.), overuse of antibiotics, water/air pollution through manure lagoons, BSE, repeated animal abuse on various farms, human rights issues, global warming, deforestation, overgrazing, soil degradation, slaughter etc.

Instead of answering these questions honestly, the vast majority of farmers try to omit the truth by answering only partially or lie about the common business practices because they know that consumers wouldn’t condone them if they knew what was going on. Farmers on Twitter try to hide the fact that farming is a business and animals are commodities in order to make a profit, instead they try to portray themselves as heroes who bring life to this world and care for animals. Farmers want consumers to believe that they truly love animals. Nothing could be further from the truth. Farmers only “care” for animals as long as they are profitable, as soon as this isn’t true anymore, the animal in question will be slaughtered or discarded.

Thanks to the brave minorities that have stood up against injustice, oppression and exploitation throughout history, societies were able to shed the shackles of human slavery, achieve equal rights for women and civil rights, etc. Now, an equally dedicated and growing minority stands up against the exploitation and killing of animals, because  systems of oppression and exploitation are always wrong. No matter if humans or non-humans are involved. As a society we already agree that animals matter morally or we wouldn’t have laws in place to protect them. Everybody agrees that unnecessary harm to any animal is wrong and this should include killing them and not just abuse. What most people don’t understand yet is that killing animals for food is completely unnecessary because we don’t need animal products to live. In fact we could feed more people more efficiently on an all plant-based diet. Therefore killing animals for pleasure and not out of necessity goes against our ethical and core beliefs.

The oppressive animal agriculture leaders today would have you believe that the few animal rights activists you may encounter on Twitter or elsewhere are fanatical extremists. The oppressive leaders are the big meat packing companies like Cargill, Foster Farms, Perdue Farms, Tyson Foods, Imperial, William Davies Company, Maple Leaf Foods, JBS, Al-Shaheer Corp., just to name a few, that kill and ship billions of animals per year. These are multi billion dollar companies that lobby to get laws in place to protect their interests. The few animal rights groups are like David and Goliath in comparison. The truth is our stone, acceptance our slingshot. The meat, dairy and egg industry spends billions on advertising a year to get consumers to buy more of their products. Recently however regular farmers with small operations try to connect to consumers on social media in order to influence and tell them where food comes from. It’s a dishonest attempt to sway consumers emotions towards animal agriculture, despite the atrocities that are committed regularly in meat, dairy and egg production. Here is where activists come in to provide a glimpse of what is going on out of sight of the public and to confront farmers with the mentioned questions above.

Sharing farm stories is fine but to pretend to love animals that you send to their premature deaths is very disturbing and dishonest. To pretend that farm animals are like your pets is a lie because no pet owner sends their pets to get slaughtered. It is a superficial attempt to make consumers feel at ease with an unethical choice to eat animal corpses and drink their secretions.

There is a lot of power in listening and activists have listened. Most activists used to consume animal products and became aware of animal exploitation and oppression later in life because they opened their minds and hearts and after thorough research into ethics, animal science, social justice matters, environmental studies, nutrition and health. They had to question their way of life and change their habits because they actually listened. Animal farmers however are defending an industry that has no place anymore in a modern society. Animal farmers defend unnecessary exploitation and killing of animals. There is an abundance of plant-based foods available to feed everybody instead of the current inefficiency, pollution and waste from animal production that sees millions die from starvation every year. 

The reason why there are less and less family farms is not because of a small group of activists, it’s because of big corporations that can produce cheaper and faster than small scale family farms. It’s a systemic problem that takes place in all industries on the globe. Driven by greed and profit manipulated consumerism. However it makes the situation worse if animal farmers lie about what they do, omit facts and avoid the truth.

Activists share their pictures, videos and knowledge to make everyone aware of a cruel and greed driven system that only benefits a few, exploits animals and can never be just or sustainable.

Everyone has a duty not to harm others. Do you respect rapists, child molesters or murderers? I don’t think so. People that harm (kill) animals for profit fall in a similar category. Animal farmers wont get respect as long as they are complicit in defending the exploitation and killing of animals. Again activists don’t hate farmers but animal agriculture. There are farmers that abandoned animal agriculture because they came to the conclusion that it’s wrong. Read the stories of Bob Comis, Harold Brown, Craig Watts and Howard Lyman.

Ultimately farmers have to understand that activists don’t strive for better animal welfare but demand true transparency of all aspects of industrial and small scale animal agriculture including standard business practices and slaughter to allow consumers to make a choice according to their ethics and the truth and not based on whitewashing from farmers and the meat, dairy and egg industry.

proxyanimal-food-production

Dear Activists;

Your message is clear. You don’t like livestock production, and you don’t much like the farmer/producer either. 

You think we don’t care, we hide the truth and have no interest in caring for the earth with sustainable practices. You use words that are much more direct and even vulgar but essentially, you are committed to ‘outing’ us for our insensitive, ‘produce at all costs’ ways.

Throughout history, we have witnessed some amazing activism, from the civil rights movement to the suffragette movement and many more. The leaders of these movements understood that rallying people together as one, through steadfast commitment to benefitting the lives of their fellow man and through inspiring others is how change came about. Activism that employs moral aggression to strike out harshly and repeatedly to hurt those who don’t share your views is unlikely to achieve what you are looking for. The tactic of using public shaming, harassment and intimidation to try and dominate those who oppose your view accomplishes little. In history, we have seen oppressing leaders who have used these very tactics to carry out some of the most atrocious acts in human history. It is not the kind of culture that benefits humanity in any way.

We understand passion. Passion is that strong and barely controllable emotion that is put into action with as much heart, mind, body and soul as is possible. We get it.

We are passionate, too. We believe that sharing our stories and encouraging dialogue creates an opportunity to learn more about other’s perspectives and passions. It is when points of view become confused with ‘absolute truth’ that communications break down. 

Yesterday – Earth Day – was a day we had chosen for all farmers to share their stories with the hash tag ‪#‎FarmVoices‬, so others could learn more about their perspectives and passions. It was their turn. We know that one of the most sincere forms of respect is to listen – there is as much wisdom in listening as there is in speaking. 

Each year we lose more and more family farms. It has become harder to farm. Harder because there are fewer farmers to support each other, harder because so many have off farm jobs, harder to make economic sense of the business of farming and harder to find time to explore new technologies and information they need. Often the only way to connect with each other is online.

We have no doubt that there have been instances where animals could have been cared for in a better way. However, best practices come as a result of people sharing and demonstrating better outcomes, which happens when they connect with each other.

We assume you eat to sustain your bodies, and must be aware that farmers grow your food, too. You believe that all living beings deserve to be treated with respect. We believe that farmers deserve that respect as well.

We hope you take the time to listen and watch some of the stories, to seek to understand and to allow space for dialogue. In turn, we promise to use our time and our passion to connect, promote best practices and support ALL of agriculture in whatever way we can. 

FarmOn Team

PETA’s shock and awe anti-wool campaign is offensive to the public and farmers – Rebuttal

Every day we are faced with articles opposing the message of Veganism and it usually all comes down to the same, they are not based on facts nor are they logical. Here a most recent article tackling the issue with a PETA campaign “

PETA’s shock and awe anti-wool campaign is offensive to the public and farmers”



First I want to make clear, I am neither a peta member nor have I ever been. I have known about peta for years and was often faced with their gory pictures which I got upset about when people shared them, they were popping up on my newsfeed, but they got me thinking, I started investigating and ultimately they led me to the truth. The real story behind animal agriculture is so successfully hidden behind many add campaigns by the food industry, in particular meat, dairy and eggs. Therefore to demonize peta for using a “prop” to get a message across is nothing different than the large multi billion dollar corporations brainwashing our society everywhere, just think about it, radio, tv, billboards, movie theatre, magazines, fashion, school, you name it, it’s endless, yet little peta in the mix of giants has such an impact. Must hit some kind of a nerve.

Let’s assess the “fake” sheep. Just like you wouldn’t take a woman and child, beat them up for real and take a picture to advertise for domestic abuse, it would be completely immoral and unethical if an animal rights organization took a real animal, abused it and made a picture. So Peta is being called out for using a prop? 

Let’s get to this article and how fallacious and illogical it is:

Just because someone was a “vegan” for 20 years, makes absolutely no sense that that person represents a complete philosophy. First off nobody who is an ethical vegan considers themselves holier, superior or more spiritual evolved, but has evaluated all aspects of animal exploitation, health, nutrition, ethics, environment, world hunger, oppression etc and has come to the clear headed solution that if it is possible to minimize ones own impact on negative outcomes, why would one chose not to? 

If someone considers a “plant based diet” (and I am deliberately not using the term “vegan diet” since plant based is a diet, vegan isn’t) to be difficult, they are clearly making it all about themselves, and not the victims or the facts that surround a vegan philosophical way of living. If it is a pain for a waitress, family or friends that you chose to live compassionately and minimize harm, you should reevaluate your life and the people surrounding you. I have not once ever encountered any problems except questions which I had factual answers for.  This person seems to have been on a plant based diet for many other physiological or psychological reasons, yet never for an ethical vegan stance. It is clear that this person is going back to that one point in their life, before google was available and now trying to profit by writing a anti vegan propaganda piece, just to make some point that is completely irrelevant to our situation today.

If a naturopath says to a person “you are starving” it is clearly not due to a failed plant based diet, but a fail in knowing how to properly nourish one self, be it on any kind of diet. If someone fails to eat properly due to whatever reasons, drug addictions, eating disorders, stress, depression, mental illnesses etc why would “veganism” become it’s target? It makes absolutely no sense. 

It is clear in this article that it is set up to bash a movement that stands for non violence and to minimize ones own negative impact on our earth, the animals, our health and humanity. Yet to use words as “convert” implies that vegan (in this case a diet) needs converting as in a religion. Yet vegans don’t worship an invisible person, an old story book or have any man made guidelines they follow except logic, facts, science, non-violence and to minimize ones own negative impacts. 

Nobody needs meat, but everybody needs nutrition, where you get it from is not as important as long as u get them, some nutrients can be absorbed better from different foods and in certain combinations, yet the claim that one person needs a decaying corpse for food, is completely false. Like all living beings we thrive if our bodies have the proper balanced nutrients and our major civilization illnesses and diseases are due to the lack in so many nutrients, yet the majority eats animal products, what does that show you? 

Appeal to Nature fallacy is simply another excuse to continue in the endless vicious cycle of animal exploitation. It is a very common choice when one wants to justify their own actions by using “nature” or a wild animal as an excuse. Yet for nothing else in life would they use that excuse. There is a big difference between killing out of instincts for survival or for pure palate pleasure & convenience. Nature’s “cruelty”, better said it’s balance and circle to survive, needs no human interaction, animals and this world can live perfectly without human beings, yet we cannot live without nature or animals. Therefore it makes us quite insignificant and if we consider ourselves all that great, who has the superiority complex? If we continue to destroy this planet, exploit and abuse animals, humans and our own bodies, we will not secure a future on this planet for the human race.

All farming practices to maximize financial gain or for palate pleasure is cruel. It involves standard acceptable business practices, if performed on a companion animal, you would be punished by law. Farm animals feel no different than domesticated animals, they experience pain, suffer and all want to live and not die. We have created a mass killing machinery that has overbred these innocent beings to yield maximum profit, they are overbred, bred to the max, used, fattened, confined and held in the most tight quarters for maximum profit and then hauled to a disgusting mass slaughter factory. Nothing “natural” about the way we farm animals. Are we comparing nature now because it doesn’t suit our point? Even small scale so called “humane” farmers, still perform mutilations and kill animals way before their natural times, only for palate pleasure. The animals still use up endless resources and create unnecessary waste only for a few minutes of culinary pleasure. 

To use the term “nothing is perfect” as an argument is a weak point and clearly shows the author has no real facts nor credibility. If we applied that logic, we should say, hey this world isn’t perfect, we still have people that are bad, so I can easily support anything that involves war, torture, rape, killing, injustice etc. As soon as you are educated and aware of how your actions and choices affect other living beings and you continue to support that, you are just at fault as the person committing the crime. To excuse that by “nobody is perfect” or “there is always the bad ones” is not taking responsibility for your own actions which is very cowardly. Do we live in a perfect utopian world? No, does that mean we should not strive to be better? Of course not. If you want to stay comfortable and selfish you don’t care, but anybody writing an article or saying they care pointing their finger at people trying to fight for justice, is a complete hypocrite. 

Just like broiler chickens are overbred and their bodies grow so rapidly and large that they suffer immensely, they can barely carry their unnatural weight on their feet, this is exactly what happens with our sheep. these sheep have been bred to yield max wool, and really could not live without being sheared. Even rescue sheep need to be sheared, does this mean that using wool is ok? No, because the whole breeding for human greed is wrong. The wool industry is toxic and to say that people use cotton and synthetics that are full of toxins/chemicals, disregards the complete abuse, exploitation and environmental impact of wool. Not only are the animals bred, mutilated (moulesing), exploited and killed, they are also sprayed with chemicals and have to bathe in toxic chemical baths and after shorn the wool is also processed, died etc until it is ready to be made into a consumer product. These animals also need food and water, and the keep, transport, slaughter etc needs immense amount of water, food and resources. If you grow cotton you of course use a lot of water and pesticides, but to place wool into the “green” zone is completely wrong and false. There are endless amounts of natural fibres humans could and can use, why is wool so popular? Because the wool industry is just as evil and big as the meat/dairy/egg industry exploiting innocent sentient beings for money. Yet fibres such as hemp, bamboo, nettle, coconut, pineapple, birch (viscose), cactus, are all options. Even making fabrics out of byproducts, such as recycling hulls from pineapple. Why isn’t it done on a large affordable basis, because we are so brainwashed by the wool industry! Wool is neither ethical, sustainable or environmentally friendly. 

To say “yes some sheep are nicked, it’s like a man shaving”, is a huge understatement and false comparison. Last time I checked a man shaved himself by his own will. He is not forcefully held down and sheared all over his body in maximum speed for money. To compare something like that just shows the disregard to animals.

Now on to the attacks towards caring and compassionate people speaking out about injustice, it is called freedom of speech and has been the only hope in history of change, or else we may still have child labor, no women rights, slavery and holocausts. While some of that may still happen around the world and is to this date a tragedy and also needs speaking out, it happens on a daily basis all around the world to the most innocent living beings, our “food animals”, which are exploited and killed not out of necessity but culinary pleasure. If you can avoid being a part of any oppression or exploitation, be it for human or non-human animals, why wouldn’t you? 

It is not about animal welfare but animal rights, the basic rights to live free of human exploitation which means no breeding for human gluttony. 

The article is all based on fallacious arguments such as “since something is always going to be bad or harmful” screw it, I will just accept that and not take any responsibilities of my own actions. There is no humane killing when it comes to greed or palate pleasure. To put a suffering animal out of it’s misery (even humans) is not the same as killing for fun. If vegans are hypocrites, I would like to know what omnivores are that claim to love and respect animals yet eat them. Who says that animals should be “food” if we were so hardwired to eat meat, every cat, dog, bird etc we looked at we would make us salivate. We are not in survival situations and if we were we would not be discussing this here. Therefore to consider any animal product for human consumption/use is completely arbitrary. 

To compare the 56 billion unnecessary deaths per year with smartphones, computers, synthetics, plastics is again a very weak argument. Should we all reduce our impact on materialistic items? Of course, every purchase we make has an impact. Two wrongs don’t make a right. Just because you buy plastic that should last you a very long time, does not give you the equal right to devour a corpse 3 times a day or ever out of fun, pleasure or convenience. Minimization is the key in an ethical vegan philosophical way of life. Yes it may take a bit of commitment and self responsibility and a sense of community, oneness and compassion for humanity and animals, if you just don’t care you may not, but it’s not as extreme or difficult as they all paint it, all you do is open and broaden your knowledge and start to pay attention to facts, details and information. If you feel that it is limiting, you may be caught in the circle of consumerism, if you think you are making a free choice you have not considered the daily influences these large corporations have on you, our society and status quo. It is much more liberating and free to live as ethically as possible because then really YOU are making the decisions!

If the author of the original article or other people think ethical vegans are cruel, is because they are faced with the truth and realities of their own actions that vegans point out. Nobody ever wants to face that what they may be doing causes discomfort, pain, suffering, heartbreak for others, so it’s easier to blame the messenger instead of taking responsibility for ones own actions. It may be considered a “lifestyle choice”, but the choice non-vegans make is to involve victims and disregard that all together because of their selfish needs. Yes humans are animals too, that is the exact point. 

If the author thinks there is a conscious way to eat meat, there is a conscious way to eat all together, which means your conscious should know that devouring a corpse for fun is wrong. The only “conscious” eating would be a plant based diet with a vegan philosophical way of life. Being older and wiser in the sense of knowing what a body needs, does not mean a plant based diet is not healthy. We can eat consciously and from local farmers all while staying true to a plant based diet. No life has been “given” by an animal, it has been violently taken, and to fill your freezer with corpses sounds more like a morgue than a fridge that should feed your life with healthful food. Wearing wool is wearing literally a concoctions of chemicals and figuratively the blood of innocent victims on your body. Use a natural fibre and if synthetic, chose wisely. Many man made fibres nowadays have less impact on the environment than for example leather or wool. It is 2015 and the world is moving away from cruelty and high intensive, resource wasting materials.

For the record, nobody is, as an individual, a reference to an entire industry or mass marketed cruelty products. To harvest honey on the scale we do, is cruel and wrong. Plenty of honey alternatives! Nothing is better than buying local and growing your own food, if possible fair trade and organic, to make soups,  stocks, freeze fruits and veggies from the summer to last you for the winter, have plenty of nuts, seeds, grains and legumes and cook up a variety of amazing plant based dishes that not only nourish the body but also the conscience! No need to kill, it’s time to reevaluate all the choices that have been indoctrinated into our upbringings that just simply do not make sense or are sustainable, ethical or healthy!

When the so called “Fair Food Movement” is called out for being unfair

This ‘ethical’ killer has done a blog post about me. This is my response…. Please share.

So it appears my presence outside the recent screening of ‘The Fair Food Documentary’ which interestingly failed to present a fair position on the forced impregnating, castration and ultimately horrifying murder of sentient beings who do not want to die, has ruffled a few feathers.

When I heard there was to be a screening in the hills hosted by The Hills Food Frontier about ethically sourced food, I was a little excited. Four things I am very passionate about – film, ethics, small business and food, all rolled into one. The film appeared to be highlighting the importance of organic food production, locally grown products, fair prices and wages, the shocking impacts of genetic modifications and the dominance of our supermarket giants who control the majority of our food supply. I was literally as excited as a pig in mud, until upon further inspection, I learnt the film was also very strongly advocating for the unnecessary, environmentally destructive, cruel and wasteful rearing and killing of non-human animals. To make matters worse, not only was pig farmer Tammi Jonas featured prominently in this film, she was appearing at the event as a guest speaker. As a vegan and animal rights advocate, I was disappointed (to say the least) that an event supposedly pushing fairness, could be so misguided by not only featuring but endorsing and advocating for something completely UNfair and morally bankrupt.

This is not the first time Tammi Jonas and Jonai Farm has come to my attention and I’m sure it won’t be the last. Tammi is very outspoken about how wonderful her farming systems are, how kind she is towards ‘her’ pigs before she sends them off to the gas chamber and how she is apparently saving the world.

So with little time to prepare, I put my thoughts to paper and offered them to those in attendance. Most arriving were more than happy to take the information, some stopping to engage in thoughtful conversation. However, the defensive response from both The Hills Food Frontier and Tammi Jonas herself is not surprising and something I may have found myself doing not so long ago when I too used to convince myself that I had the right to control and murder those most vulnerable.

Here you can see what I had to say http://veganbeasts.com/FAIR-FOOD.pdf followed by the days later online response from Tammi http://www.tammijonas.com/ Interestingly, neither THFF or Jonai Farms uploaded the words from my leaflet and referred to me as the “woman handing out slanderous vegan abolitionist flyers” that “included a number of inaccurate descriptions of the stunning process and the usual highly emotive language”….

So, on that note…

My knowledge of the stunning and slaughter process chosen as the preferred method by Jonai Farms comes from the following resources…
Aussie Farms http://www.aussiefarms.org.au/
Personal accounts from witnesses’ of CO2 pig stunning http://www.examiner.com/…/anita-krajnc-answers-questions-on…
And independent studies and veterinarian comments found through http://terrastendo.net/…/more-on-our-open-letter-to-tammi-…/

Undercover footage from Rivalea Piggery and Abbottoir – Cowora NSW was provided anonymously to Aussie Farms. The footage demonstrates the claims I have made about the stunning process and further egregious cruelty inflicted on pigs by staff. Rivalea hold a majority share in Diamond Valley Pork, using the exact same electrical prodding and stunning process as that featured in this footage. http://www.aussieabattoirs.com/slaughterhouses/corowa/videos

However, I believe the race at Diamond Valley Pork, which the pigs from Tammi’s farm are forced through, is enclosed so more closely resembles that of Big River Pork in SA which can be viewed here… http://www.aussieabattoirs.com/slaugh…/big-river-pork/videos

Tammi would like us to think the slaughterhouse workers lay out the red carpet when the Jonai transport arrives and somehow treat ‘her’ pigs differently to the thousands of other individuals who sadly pass through here, but the reality is, they are all treated the same.

Animal Liberation Victoria conducted an interview with an ex DVP employee. Here is an extract from that interview

“Q: “You definitely think this is cruel?”

A: “OH! It is a horrible way to go. This is not an instantaneous death!
They are traumatised by the truck trip
They are traumatised when they get taken off the truck
They are traumatised by listening to what is going to happen to them
They are traumatised as they go into the gondola
They are traumatised being put into the gondola and,
then they actually suffocate to death by going down into the gas pit.
It’s a long, slow, death. This is not an instantaneous death.
And it’s very routine”

There is a reason why slaughterhouses have tall walls and high security and why Tammi herself leaves images of this process from her website. The pigs are apparently happy in the mud……then…. they are suddenly hanging in her meat fridge. An entire process is missing because witnessing the killing of those who do not want to die is hard to stomach. It is also interesting to note that whilst Tammi advocates against the horrors of the factory farming process, referring to it as ‘cruel’ and outside of her ‘moral code’, she is quite willing to pay money to DVP slaughterhouse, whose 80% share is held by the largest producers of factory farmed pigs in Australia.

Further claims from Tammi Jonas about the event at which I was leafleting…

“Nobody stepped forward and some audience members said they believed that they (I) had handed out flyers and left.”

This is true. It is also true, as reported to me from friends who were present at the screening that it was implied by Tammi that I was a coward for leaving early. Although I had every intention and desire to be present at the screening and Q&A this was unfortunately not possible due to having hours of work to complete towards the following mornings 6am set off to a weekend of duck rescue. A horrendous experience where shooters use the same excuses for killing innocent beings that Jonai Farms do – “they’ve had a good life first”, “they are an ethical food source”, “they don’t feel any pain”, all lies created to make the unfair appear fair. And all done for no necessary reason, just personal pleasure. I certainly don’t view putting myself on the wetlands amongst people with guns as a cowardly characteristic and would much prefer a debate in the safe confines of a theatre if thousands of suffering ducks weren’t dying slow, agonising deaths on the wetlands.

“A few vegetarians commented on how pleased they were that farmers like us are working to get animals back on the paddocks where they belong.”

I’m not sure vegetarians are a good back up to quote, considering they too take part in the unnecessary harm and killing of animals on a daily basis and really do not grasp the concept of animal rights, social justice and all it’s related implications. I know, as I have been one. Vegetarians on their way to veganism would understand this, but vegetarians happy to stop there still have pretty much the same mindset as a carnist.

“It was clear that the vegan abolitionist made no friends that night”

I’m not sure how Tammi can come to this conclusion unless she petitioned 100 people on their way out, however I will say that making friends is certainly not my objective… but neither is making enemies. I only seek to peacefully provide a voice for those who are suffering immeasurably. As long as people including The Hills Food Frontier and Jonai Farms endorse the taking of lives and refuse to acknowledge that animals do not exist for us, the suffering will continue. All sentient beings deserve to live free from harm and predetermined death – the pigs raised at Jonai Farms are murdered at 1/13th of their life expectancy, this is equivalent to taking the life of a six year old human. I personally fear confrontation but like so many animal rights advocates, have had to face that fear head on, as people simply do not like to be encouraged to question what they consider to be ‘their’ choices. No one wants to be made to feel bad, and no matter how the advocate goes about advocating (even something as passive as leafleting in this case), they will always be putting themselves into potential positions of conflict. If not making friends that night is the worst that could happen to me, yet 100 people were given an alternative viewpoint to killing and violence, then so be it.

“Our society over-consumes meat to the detriment of the planet and animals grown in massive intensive systems. But that doesn’t mean the same as ‘all meat eating is bad’, hence disagreements with vegans…”

– errrrhhhhh yes it does. Unless the animal asked you to kill him or her then yes, eating one animal a month or 50 makes no difference to that one animal. And you are continuing to perpetuate the myth that animals exist for us, which is what has gotten us into this horrible mess in the first place. With human population expected to reach 9 billion in the very near future, and thousands of people starving to death every single day, how can so called ‘fair food movements’ endorse feeding crops to billions of non-human animals resulting in 83% waste of human calorie intake? “All meat eating IS bad” because it is all cruel, inefficient and unnecessary.

Below are what Tammi professes to be good responses to points made by vegan abolisionists in general (not specifically me).

“There is no reason to eat meat – you can live without it – The quick answer is: I agree. And you can also live without bananas, apples, and potatoes, but most people don’t.”

It’s nice to see Tammi compares the life of an animal to the life of a banana. Please note: bananas are not sentient. Perhaps Tammi is unaware of this.

“But at a systems level, the planet can’t live without animals and plants don’t grow without phosphorous and nitrogen – both abundant in livestock manure. A healthy agroecological system incorporates animals and some of them are then available as food for humans.”

“Available”? What suddenly makes them ‘available’? Non-human animals will hopefully always be part of our lives. This has nothing to do with killing and eating them. Their positive contribution to the planet will no doubt survive once we eradicate their negative contribution that we as humans have created through forced breeding. There is an abundance of manure – so much so that our oceans are dying. This argument in relation to continued breeding and premeditated killing is ludicrous.

“And so incorporating meat into a balanced diet makes good ecological sense”

Ummm… no it doesn’t, for the reasons outlined previously in regards to loss of calorie intake via processing food through another living being, that we could otherwise eat directly. Along with the required clearing of land and water wasted to do so.

“Yes, I am (a speciesist). I believe there is a hierarchy of species and I’m really happy to be at the top of that ladder.”

Well, thanks for the honesty, however a little scary. A racist, sexist or homophobe may not be willing to be so upfront about such oppressive and immoral behaviours but here you are loud and proud. They do say that admission is the first sign of healing so perhaps there is a glimmer of hope here. Sarcasm aside, there is hope for everyone to stop partaking in animal exploitation. The most unlikely of people are turning to veganism every single day. Additionally, I don’t consider taking advantage of those most vulnerable for no reason other than pleasure as being part of some ladder. It is a reflection of the flaws of our species that we will cause unnecessary harm and filtrates through all areas of our lives. Violence against women, human minority groups and those less able will always occur so long as we are taught from birth that it is acceptable to dictate and take the lives of those most vulnerable, simply because we can.

“You wouldn’t kill your dog for a stir fry, there’s no reason you should kill a pig either. It’s true, I wouldn’t kill our dogs for a stir fry, because I was culturally conditioned not to eat dogs so I have a kind of irrational ‘ick’ response. But I have no issues with other cultures who eat dogs, so long as the dogs are raised respectfully in a manner that allows them to express their natural behaviours.”

Nothing could make it more apparent that we only partake in the eating of animals and their by-products because it is what has been forced upon us from birth as ‘normal’ then reinforced daily by friends, family, and most powerfully the animal agriculture and advertising sector, than this statement. Thank you Tammi. But it is the small voices of people like me that are getting through to present a truly ethical, humane, sustainable and FAIR way of living. It is inconvenient for some, confronting and a challenging step to take, but I have yet to meet a vegan (and I’ve met many) who regret taking it. The only regret you ever hear is that they wish they’d opened their eyes sooner – one I will always carry myself. So called ‘humane’ farmers are only railroading those who are opening their eyes to what is truly just.

There are a couple of similarities between myself and Tammi Jonas. We are both outspoken and passionate in our advocacy. The stand out difference is that I didn’t stop opening my heart when the answers started becoming too inconvenient.

Thank you to The Hills Food Frontier for screening this film and for your otherwise positive fair food advocacy. Vegan friends in the audience, although disappointed and annoyed by the messaging that killing can be fair, told me of the wonderful opportunities this event presented in sourcing fair plant-based food from local producers. I hope your future advocacy can start to move towards being morally consistent for ourselves and the trillions of other beings which we share this planet.

Those interested in reading the entire interview by the ex DVP employee can contact ALV at enquiries@alv.org.au

A user's photo.
Author: Kristin Dresden

Makin’ bacon with tender loving care

The following is a response to this blog entry:  http://www.farmgirlfollies.com/2011/06/makin-bacon-with-tender-loving-care-8523.html

“There is a difference between food animals and pets.”

Not from the animals’ standpoint. Both want to live. Both want to exercise their minds and their bodies. Both make friends. Both have the capacity for fear and happiness, for suffering and contentment. Both desire and deserve mercy and freedom from human-imposed violence.

“Food animals are respectfully handled and carefully managed. Their needs are always top of mind whether it’s the middle of winter or the oppressive heat of summer.”

No, they’re not. Hens are bred to grossly overproduce eggs, which robs their bodies of nutrients and raises the risk of painful prolapse and reproductive cancers. Calves born on dairies are denied nursing at their mothers’ side – the most important bond in their lives. Chickens and turkeys are bred to be so top-heavy that most develop lameness problems, and some collapse or die of heart attacks. Chickens and turkeys are also not covered by the already-weak and under-enforced Humane Slaughter Act; thus they may be fully conscious as they bleed to death, upside down.

Farmed animals are castrated, de-horned, and subject to other mutilations without painkillers.

When farmed animals are no longer turning a profit, they’re destroyed. Most are killed very young; e.g., chickens at only a few weeks old. Almost none make it to middle age. Most are denied growing up with their mothers, or are pulled away long before they would be independent.

At every stage of life, farmed animals are treated in ways that would result in cruelty charges if done to pets.

“Have you ever watched curious cows sniffing their caretaker or leaning into a good scratch on the head? Have you ever seen a porky pig take a walk with his owner and then watched as it reclined in the grass beside her?”

Yes. I have also seen cows on family farms sent to slaughter because they weren’t gaining enough weight or because they could not get pregnant. I have seen newborn calves stolen from their mothers and wheeled to isolated stalls, where the calves cannot run around or engage in social bonding activities. I have seen breeder turkeys flailing desperately, held down by one man while another forcibly injects see into her. These are all standard practices defended by animal agriculture.

The fact that you know that farmed animals seek pleasure and comfort is all the more reason not to kill them, or to break up their families, or to breed them to grossly overproduce flesh, eggs, and milk.

“The more you like/love/respect your animals — any animals, the better care they will receive.”

If you respect animals, you will not kill them as soon as profitable.

“That’s why farmers like my father-in-law know their cows by name and address them as such during milking.”

As much as the cows may like being addressed by name, what they want much more is a) to care for their calves, b) to produce a normal amount of milk, which means enough for a calf every two years, like their wild brethren have done for millions of years, c) to live to old age and not be slaughtered as young adults.

“It’s why my dad is able to walk up to (most) calves in the pasture shortly after birth. He treats their mamas well and they’ve learned to trust him.”

He betrays that trust when he kills them. And again, the babies want to be with their mamas. Just like you want to be with your dad. On sanctuaries, where we also call animals by their names, if a cow, sheep, goat, or any other animals arrives pregnant, usually the babies and the mothers become lifetime companions. This is denied on animal farms. Farmed animals also make lifetime friends; this is cut short on animal farms.

Respect means respect for animals’ most fervent desires: to be with their friends and family, to not have bodies that are artificially in overproduction, and to live their normal life spans. You may want to think you respect animals, but you’re lying to yourself to make yourself feel good about the unnecessary violence you inflict on them.

If you really want to be honest – and really show respect for animals – you have to stop using them as disposable assets. You have to get out of animal “farming” – which is really a mass-killing operation, mostly of very young animals – and into real farming – of crops – or into another field altogether which is not based on avoidable harm to others, year after year.

Another option is to turn the animal farm into an animal sanctuary, where rescued animals are able to live their lives and not be killed for profit, where animals can make lifetime friends. At a sanctuary, not only will you call the power company, but you’ll take 10-year old sick chickens inside, and pay for a cart for a lame goat who she can walk again. You’ll learn what love and respect for animals really is. You’ll never, ever betray their trust.

Check out https://life.indiegogo.com/…/rowdy-girl-sanctuary-save…. Here is someone who woke up after years of being involved in ranching. She realized that ranching and respecting were violently at odds with one another. She has seen the light. So can you.

Cheri Ezell-Vandersluis, a former dairy goat farmer, now runs a sanctuary. She saw the light – she realized that animals deserved real respect, not pretend respect before we put them on a truck and send them to horrific slaughterhouses. Read her story here: http://www.humanemyth.org/cheriezell.htm

Cattle rancher Howard Lyman realized that raising and killing animals is unethical, environmentally unsound, and not very good for your health. He is now vegan and a leading animal advocate, and he’s never turning back. Here’s his web page: http://www.madcowboy.com. It’s full of eye-opening information.

You have many years to make a positive difference for animals. Step one is stop trying to defend the indefensible. This may cause some heartburn with your family at first, but share these materials, and the truth, with them, and they may eventually come around. Step 2 – stop eating them. There are literally 50 million plant-based recipes on the net, and it’s simple to create animal-free meals that are as tasty, healthy, and diverse as whatever you’re eating now – and you won’t have to lie to yourself about how your potatoes, kale, lentils, or tempeh bacon was killed.

“even though he became somewhat of a pet, she’s aware of his true purpose. To provide sustenance.”

His purpose, from his point of view, is to live, to enjoy life, to seek comfort and friendship, to play, to eat good food and sleep in comfortable straw. You are not giving him purpose; he already has purpose, and you’re destroying it.

He is not providing sustenance. We can actually feed more people by growing plants. In this country, we are not short on calories. Not one person is being kept alive by this pig. You’re ending his life for greed and habit. That’s profoundly, sadly wrong.

You have the power to stop supporting this needless violence, and to live by the golden rule, whenever you want to. Remember these life lessons: It’s wrong to inflict avoidable harm on innocent others, and compassion is better than violence. That’s our purpose.

Author: Gary L. (farm sanctuary volunteer & rabbit rescuer)

Original Text:

There is a difference between food animals and pets.

And it’s not about quality of care. Food animals are respectfully handled and carefully managed. Their needs are always top of mind whether it’s the middle of winter or the oppressive heat of summer. 

It’s about emotional attachment. 

Pets may sleep on the bed, recline with us on the couch or chase our frisbees. Pets meet us at the stall door, rub against our ankles or wag us into a state of happiness. Then again … have you ever watched curious cows sniffing their caretaker or leaning into a good scratch on the head? Have you ever seen a porky pig take a walk with his owner and then watched as it reclined in the grass beside her?

Some might think that’s a big problem. I say it’s healthy.

The more you like/love/respect your animals — any animals, the better care they will receive. That’s why farmers like my father-in-law know their cows by name and address them as such during milking.

It’s why my dad is able to walk up to (most) calves in the pasture shortly after birth. He treats their mamas well and they’ve learned to trust him. He cares for them and protects them from harm. And that’s why — when the electric went out the other day — he called up the power company. He wasn’t upset because his lights were out or the refrigerator was off. The cows couldn’t get water and that was the only thing on his mind.

This porker is on her mind, too.

He’s the first thing she checks on when her feet hit the floor in the morning. She’s been studying her pig book a lot. Not because she wants to do well at 4-H judging (though that’s on her mind), but because she wants to know more about the animal in her care. She feeds him, checks that he has fresh water, cleans his pen, and last night … bathed him. After a leisurely stroll around the yard, of course.

The fair is in July. I’m expecting some tears at the end of the week … and I’m glad.

It’s a sign that she cares … that she respects her animal … and that even though he became somewhat of a pet, she’s aware of his true purpose. To provide sustenance.

And that is a healthy, realistic point of view.