Do you want to explain or read about “why vegan” in under two minutes or in fewer than 500 words? If so, then see below. Sure, longer conversations to follow, but this is a solid start.
- Sentient– like us, animals are sentient and want to live, even if for just one more moment. It doesn’t matter if we are ugly, old, rare, common, smart, beautiful, fat, young, skinny, cute, cuddly, rich, unintelligent, poor, able bodied or differently abled – we all want to live and not be exploited for our lives, flesh, secretions or hair. It doesn’t matter if we are treated like an honoured guest if we are killed at the end. There is no hierarchy that makes “us” better than “them”. We are not objects. They are not objects. There is no morally good reason to treat them differently than us with respect to whether they live, die or are exploited
- Feminism– females of other species are exploited for their reproductive system, for being female. If we can’t stop objectifying and oppressing them, how can we expect anyone to stop doing that to us?
- Justice– the very lives of animals are the means of production in animal agriculture. As consumers, we own those lives and place little to no value on them. Despite others doing the dirty work for us, we also own their unjustified killing because our palate pleasure, convenience and vanity are not good reasons to end a life. Remember, dairy cows and egg laying hens all end up in the same slaughterhouses as “meat” animals
- Race– one of the most exploited groups of workers are those in animal agriculture, including in slaughterhouses, and a very large number of those workers are people of colour and vulnerable immigrants. If we care about race issues, then we must care about this too
- Environment– a significant proportion of greenhouse gases are from animal agriculture, more than the entire transport system and as much as oil and gas. Sea dead zones are from fertiliser and animal faeces runoff. Majority of land use/deforestation/degradation is for/comes from cultivating crops for animal feed… add to that the water and pesticides needed to grow those crops. The plastic in the sea is mainly from fishing… and the list goes on
- Health– we don’t need – at any age or stage – to eat animal products to be healthy or have delicious meals. Here’s a useful list of legitimate resourcesand it only takes a little time with Google to find how to cook even the simplest vegan meal
- Cost– if we are concerned about how to think about poverty and veganism, then this piece may be helpful.However, vegetables, grains, pulses and many fruits are not expensive (nuts can be expensive) and all are cheaper than animal products, whether alone or in the long-term health and environmental impacts that will cost more than anyone is prepared to pay.