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chicadelcaribe
Dec 16th, 2011, 01:54 AM
Once I really acknowledged what goes on in the meat industry I had to stop eating meat, and did so at once. However, it took me a while to become vegan, but that was always my main goal - start off vegetarian, but ultimately switch to vegan. A friend asked me this question yesterday - what reasoning do people have for being vegetarian but NOT vegan? Maybe it depends on why they are vegetarian? For me it was because of animal treatment, and they are treated horribly regardless of whether it's for their meat or their milk or eggs or whatever... I don't know, to me it seems like the next logical step, if you are vegetarian you will be vegan eventually or go straight to being vegan, and if you are doing it because of animal treatment, it doesn't make sense to me (now, anyway) to only stop eating meat itself. .. but why don't people do so? What is their reasoning? I guess vegetarian is better than just eating everything. I know for me the only real reason I wasn't vegan was because I was lazy and didn't feel like giving up my beloved cheese and milk products (of course, now I don't miss them at all!) I would love your thoughts!

Maître
Dec 16th, 2011, 03:04 AM
I guess partly it's also due to societal pressure and people being insecure, vegans are still very much seen as extreme hippie weirdos while vegetarians are generally seen as just 'normal people' who happen to care a bit more about animals. It's hard to avoid criticism and conflict as a vegan, and some people just can't (or don't want to) handle it.

rosederwelt
Dec 16th, 2011, 06:54 AM
I think most people genuinely don't know that the dairy and egg industry is just as horrible as the meat one. I have a friend who says she's a vegetarian because she doesn't believe in the killing of animals, but she has cow milk and buys eggs that don't even pretend to be free range...

rosederwelt
Dec 16th, 2011, 06:54 AM
I guess partly it's also due to societal pressure and people being insecure, vegans are still very much seen as extreme hippie weirdos while vegetarians are generally seen as just 'normal people' who happen to care a bit more about animals. It's hard to avoid criticism and conflict as a vegan, and some people just can't (or don't want to) handle it.

This is also true. I think a lot of people see it as too much "bother", e.g. when you go to restaurants. I know I did.

Ms_Derious
Dec 16th, 2011, 08:34 AM
I think most people genuinely don't know that the dairy and egg industry is just as horrible as the meat one. I have a friend who says she's a vegetarian because she doesn't believe in the killing of animals, but she has cow milk and buys eggs that don't even pretend to be free range...

+1

I remember saying that I didn't agree with the killing of animals.

FaerieSuzy
Dec 16th, 2011, 09:39 AM
I have a friend who has been a life long vegetarian and was so surprised when I went vegan. I was surprised when she didn't take the next step after I had pointed out why I was cutting out all animal products. I think she's too scared to look too far into it and see what else goes on, but I reckon she'll come round eventually :)

Andy_T
Dec 16th, 2011, 11:14 AM
I think most people genuinely don't know that the dairy and egg industry is just as horrible as the meat one.

Absolutely!

It's not rocket science to figure out that an animal has to be killed if you want to eat a steak.
That consuming dairy leads to cows being artificially inseminated (i.e. raped), their babies being taken from them and the cows themselves being killed after a few years is not as obvious, and is normally well hidden by the dairy industry.

To be very honest, in the 20 years I was a vegetarian I heard a few times (2 or 3) that "vegetarians are murderers" and that a vegetarian might as well go back to eating steaks but when that was hurled at me without further explanation, I would not have listened any more even if there had been rational arguments presented by the persons making them.

When I read J.S. Foer's "Eating Animals" 2 years ago, where those facts are presented in a calm and rational way, I went vegan the same week.

So that tells me a bit how I should go about my own vegan activism :-)

Best regards,
Andy

Mymblesdaughter
Dec 16th, 2011, 12:01 PM
Personally I went vegetarian at the age of 8 that was 35 years ago. I didn't turn vegan until I was 26. Being vegetarian was seen as pretty strange then. The only other person I knew or had heard of being vegetarian was a teacher in my school. I had no idea if animals were treated badly I just decided that I couldn't eat a living creature who was no different to my cat.

I stayed that way for many years not realising what was involved in the milk and dairy industry. My family are pentecostal christians so I was always being told by their friend that God made animals for us to eat. So it wasn't easy. I met my husband who was also vegetarian and we went vegan together. We decided to go vegan when we started to understand how many male calves are killed in the dairy industry. This was at the time of mad cow disease so lots of details about farming methods were being examined.

I think now with the internet it's much easier to see and find out this information. Although I would like to say I was totally ignorant as a vegetarian, no one told me the truth because if they had I like to think I would have listened.

I also think it's easier for some people to go vegan than others. I was always someone who wanted to be different and was strong willed and stubborn. Other people I know just want to fit in and be like everyone else, they want everyone to like them and that's not possible if your vegan. So many people call themselves vegetarian now it's pretty mainstream.

Crusty Rat
Dec 16th, 2011, 12:07 PM
My thoughts:

- Vegetarianism is more "mainstream" and therefore more accessible to most people

- It's easier to connect a piece of flesh to causing harm than excretions - children often go veggie when they find out where meat comes from, you can't really go around the fact that it's a dead animal

- Some people are repulsed by the texture of flesh

- We're shown the "happy-farmyard" myth from an early age, the idea that cows and chickens are treated like pets

- Other widely circulated myths, "cows need to be milked", the idea that milk and eggs are produced "naturally"

- "Nutritional advice" taught in schools - the food pyramid and that, treating eggs and dairy as a healthy and necessary diet component

- Vegetarian meals tend to be packed out with cheese and eggs to "replace" the meat

- Dairy in particular has a lot of advertising ("got milk?", adverts with conventionally attractive nude women rubbing themselves in dairy claiming it to be good for your skin)

- Nutritional disinformation - pushing calcium as something only obtainable from dairy, the protein myth

- Dairy weasels its way into all kinds of processed food

- Dairy is very ingrained in the western diet - an average British breakfast might consist of a cup of tea with cows' milk, cereal with cows' milk and toast with butter

- Readily available comfort food and possible addictiveness - chocolate, cake, puddings. When I first went vegan I actually thought you couldn't make cake without eggs (now I get omnis saying my cakes are the best they've ever had *smug*)

- Dairy is pushed as both as staple and a luxury - on one end you get your milk and anonymous rubber cheese, on the other you get "all-butter" biscuits and "real cream" puddings as well as expensive mouldy things

Think I've nattered on enough now...

rosederwelt
Dec 16th, 2011, 01:46 PM
^ All good points. The one that bothers me a lot is definitely the myth that cows and chickens are treated as pets, that they're running freely around the meadow and are only too happy to give humans their produce...

A couple of weeks ago I went for coffee with an omni friend who didn't know yet that I was a vegan. When I took soy milk with my coffee she began asking questions. When I told her I didn't have dairy anymore because I felt the way cows were treated was unacceptable, she said really authoratatively, "I doubt the cows really mind though".

At this point I wasn't in the mood to go into why I really think they do mind, but oh my god. Talk about buying into this myth. I know I was like that for the majority of my life, and as I said further up in the thread people genuinely don't know about the rape and killing calves and stuff, but I was presenting her with a fact, and it was like she was so scared of her eating habits or whatever being threatened, that she had to say that.

Andy_T
Dec 16th, 2011, 03:15 PM
Hello Rose,

whenever I talk to somebody who doesn't think the cows really mind - especially women - I address them to this article:
http://challengeoppression.com/2010/05/03/a-cows-milk-is-not-yours-to-take/

Best regards,
Andy

Maître
Dec 16th, 2011, 03:25 PM
Hello Rose,

whenever I talk to somebody who doesn't think the cows really mind - especially women - I address them to this article:
http://challengeoppression.com/2010/05/03/a-cows-milk-is-not-yours-to-take/

Best regards,
Andy

I've bookmarked that page, even despite being all too aware of what happens to animals I couldn't help becoming teary eyed when reading that, it's all so wrong :(.

rosederwelt
Dec 16th, 2011, 03:49 PM
That link was interesting, I just spent time reading a few more articles on that site too.

Also, if you can get your hands on "The Sexual Politics of Meat" by Carol J. Adams, do so. It focuses on - as Andy said - how women are concerned with the whole meat and dairy issue. Very unsettling at certain points.

Purepsycho
Dec 17th, 2011, 12:09 AM
Andy_T
Hello Rose,

whenever I talk to somebody who doesn't think the cows really mind - especially women - I address them to this article:
http://challengeoppression.com/2010/...yours-to-take/

Best regards,
Andy
I've bookmarked that page, even despite being all too aware of what happens to animals I couldn't help becoming teary eyed when reading that, it's all so wrong .

I just started to well up reading that too.
I have to admit, i'm a newbie vegan, in my 3rd week after being a vegetarian for 7 years. I too believed that by being veggie i wasn't subjecting animals to horrific treatments anymore and i often said, 'i could never go vegan, veggie is enough for me'.
It wasn't until i made some new vegan friends this year and talking to them began to re-evaluate my choices, and learned how wrong i was!

leedsveg
Dec 17th, 2011, 10:04 PM
Thanks for the article Andy.:thumbsup:

Leedsveg