... but I stopped. Now I'm a dad, and may blog again...

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Block Chop 3:

I can’t just keep writing about how I can’t think of anything to write about.  That’ll get boring very quickly for everyone, especially for me.  So today let’s talk about... why I am not a vegetarian.  It’s as good as anything else to talk about.  I just read a blog post by “Voracious Vegan” called Veganism: Where Do You Draw The Line?.  It wound me up.  The gist of the article is that veganism is the best choice a person can make (therefore eating meat is a bad choice); veganism is morally superior but there is infighting amongst vegans about all sorts of ridiculous things (eg is it ok to eat vegan food manufactured by a company that also makes non-vegan food); any form of shopping is “mindless consumerism”; and, that veganism is not (as I consider it) fussy eating, it is a “movement” (the only movement involved in my eating habits, happens about 5 hours after eating.  It’s a bowel movement, get it).

So why am I not a vegetarian/vegan?

In one sentence: Because I am not a hypocrite.  In another sentence: Because I love food.  Need another reason? Ok.  Because I am alive.

Ok, I’m sure I need to break this down a bit more.  First let’s look at the hypocrisy.  I’m sure the author of Voracious Vegan is a lovely person, and there are some damn fine recipes on her blog (I have nothing against vegan food.  I love food... all food.  Seriously, amongst the takowasa, black pudding, and ostrich burgers, one of the nicest foods I have ever eaten is the house salad at the Whale Tail cafe in Lancaster – try it!). 

But does she not see the contradiction in her statement (in About Me) that she enjoys “beautiful cruelty free foods that will not only make us healthier and happier, but are good for our planet and the animals as well,” when compared to the blog post in question where she states un-categorically that her favourite brand of vegan margarine (!) directly causes the death of orang-utans (wtf!).  Well yes, reading the rest of the blog post, she does see the contradiction, and it eats her up inside daily.  Which is a terrible shame; an almost Catholic-level of guilt.  A strict Catholic believes that our natural sexual urges are evil and, because they are a normal process of life, is destroyed by the guilt.  A strict Vegan worries about harming animals, but because this is an unavoidable part of life is consumed by guilt.  Yes, the over-riding theme of Veganism: Where Do You Draw The Line? is crippling guilt about the effect, however minor, of human activity on animal life.  Not what I would consider a fun way of eating.

Ultimately veganism is only a moral high ground if you accept the proposition that eating animals is wrong.  I don’t accept this.  Eating animals is a good thing.  I don’t believe fish feel pain (the best evidence that they do feel pain can only show that they respond to stimulus; we cannot extrapolate a conclusion about pain from this), and I believe that the suffering of mammals, cephalopods, etc, can and should be minimalised while still remembering that all living creatures are food.  All life exists to consume other life.  I eat meat because I am alive.  I am not making excuses for this (for the ‘Voracious Vegan’ there are no reasons to eat meat, only excuses), because I don’t need to.

That's all I can be bothered writing for now.  Time for a cuppa.

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