Top 10 links of the week! An edifying ramble through veganism! »
Per usual, I slipped up last week, so this spans a couple weeks. Leave me alone, I have a real job!
National Geographic has a nice infograph about the LEGAL wildlife trade in Asia. It’s ill. I would have posted it but it’s too big to post the whole thing so go check it out.
From One Green Planet, vegan wine pairings! I love my wine and you know this.
Grist wonders, is Idaho a safe haven for CAFOs (Confined Animal Feeding Operation)? Damn, Idaho, that’s whack.
Wildlife officials in upstate New York “are squealing over ‘captive hunts’ upstate that have flooded three counties with out-of-control feral hogs.” Squealing.
This is kind of a big deal but I don’t have time to write a good post on it so maybe it can be our discussion topic: A new economics study confirms Namibian seal-watching is worth 300 percent more than seal hunting. I’ve heard of things like this before, where like safari-type tourist things could be worth more than elephant ivory and whale-watching could bring in more cash money than whale-killing. Have you guys? Seems pretty awesome. There should be an organization that JUST focuses on this. Money makes the world go round!
Our favorite guilt-ridden omni, Sami Grover from Treehugger, says all the meat eaters should eat less meat! It’s totes true.
Vegan Mainstream says our Laura is a vegan mover and shaker! That Laura, she’s so lovable. And foul-mouthed.
Gothamist taste-tested the Dun-Well faux-gras donut and the foie gras donut, and the dudes who made the actual dead-goose-liver pastry were all, The fake one is good, but we won’t be making a vegan version ourselves because vegans have “a FUBU mentality when it comes to vegan delights.” Which, buddy, do you know how much more business you would get if you offered novelty fancy vegan food? So much.
Refinery29, of which my favorite ex-boyfriend is a founding member, has a nice vegan shoe list: 12 Vegan Shoes That Aren’t Fugly. Some of the usual suspects, but several I hadn’t seen! And YOU KNOW I seen a lot of shoes. I like those first loafers, buy them for me.
Treehugger talks about vegans again and bores the hell out of me »
Sami Grover at Treehugger is talking about veganism again, in "What does a Vegan World Actually Look Like?" He in no way answers this question or attempts to take a stance. Because I’m always willing to share knowledge, I’ll answer his questions for you: Is a vegan world healthier? Yes. Is it less cruel? Yes. Is it more sustainable? Yes. Now here’s MY question: We see so many good reasons to be vegan, what’s a good reason NOT to be vegan? I’d love to hear a legitimate reason that goes beyond “bacon tastes good.”
Further: Sami Grover, what is up with you, sir? With posts like "I Don’t feel Bad for Eating Meat. So Why Do I Apologize For It?" (pro tip: because you do!) and "Why Vegans Are Welcome to Call me a Murder" (OK, murderer!), it’s starting to look like you’re sourcing your articles from Defensive Omnivore Bingo. If you’re not, you should be! Please see the below game board, that should keep you busy for a while—you can do a write-up for each square!
Meat is murder and I don’t care yet »
I read this piece today on Treehugger, "Why Vegans Are Welcome to Call Me a Murderer" by Sami Grover. Just wanted to let you know what I’ve been doing with my day, that’s all. Just kidding! I have thoughts about it! You know me, always with the thoughts!
First let me say that Grover’s Treehugger bio says he’s a committed environmental activist. It’s my opinion that you’re not an environmental activist if you eat meat and dairy. It’s like being an environmentalist and driving an SUV, they just don’t go together. However, in Grover’s post he says he is an occasional, sustainable-meat eater. If he is actually diligent about this, it’s very impressive considering the minuscule (ed.: MINUSCULE) amount of meat that is raised sustainably. But I have to wonder, does he also only eat sustainable dairy? Dairy is TERRIBLE for the environment. Oy, that’s a lot of work. Might as well be vegan and not worry about it!
I always have to question a supposed environmentalist who eats meat or dairy. Does not compute. Grover’s main point is that maybe people are right to call meat murder but maybe it’s not helpful for the cause to actually say that. He finishes with this sentiment:
So while ideas like a weekday vegetarian diet may strike many non-meat eaters as hypocritical and strange (who says murder is OK on the weekend!?), I’d suggest they are a very real step forward—whether you believe we should eat less meat, or no meat at all. I recognize that is a hard step for those who believe in the murder-analogy to take, but it may be one that ends up saving a lot of animal lives.
I don’t disagree with Grover at all on these points. Meat is murder but society doesn’t view it as such and maybe you’ll turn more people off by telling them that. Like him, I’m not sure if this is true but I’ll give it a solid, “maybe.” And while in my heart of hearts, I can’t stand vegetarians (what makes one vegetarian that shouldn’t translate into being vegan?), I applaud and am very proud of my family and friends who have committed to Meatless Monday. For someone who isn’t a serious environmentalist and doesn’t have ethical qualms with eating meat to slow their roll, look at the environmental impact and try to reduce their meat consumption is a great step forward.
So now you’re like, “OK, Megan Rascal, where are these thoughts of yours?” Well, this post of Grover’s brings up what I’ve been thinking a lot about lately; so often, when we talk about veganism, it becomes a discussion about whether or not killing animals is wrong—I think this conversation is premature! The main reason I am vegan is because the way animals are raised for meat and dairy is inhumane and horrifying. Until all animals are treated in a humane manner up until the day they are killed, we are not ready to have the discussion of whether or not meat is murder.
Grover brings up the death penalty, which is a comparison I often use to explain my point. I’m against the death penalty—not necessarily because I don’t think the government should kill people but because the death penalty is RACIST and INNOCENT PEOPLE GET KILLED. When we have a 100 percent foolproof way to ensure that only guilty people get the death penalty and it is without a doubt sentenced fairly across race and class lines, only then should we begin to discuss whether or not the government should kill people at all. Until they find a way to do this, the death penalty should be abolished. In this same way, until it can be guaranteed without a doubt that animals are raised humanely, we haven’t reached the point where we need to discuss whether or not killing animals is wrong. As long as money and people are involved, I doubt all animals will ever be treated decently but while we wait, I think I’ll just be vegan.
[graph from the Death Penalty Information Center]