Being vegan: a public apology

Senior Layout Editor

On behalf of all Vegans everywhere, I apologize. I apologize for taking longer to order at non-vegan friendly restaurants; I apologize for making you uncomfortable because I chose not to consume animals or animal byproducts; and I especially regret that you view me and others who have made the same lifestyle choice as utterly offensive.

I can’t stress enough how absolutely annoying it must be for you to sit by while I order my veggie burger without mayo, or my salad without cheese. Why can’t I just eat like everyone else and deal with it? I know I could just consume hormone-infused beef with puss-filled, over-processed cheese, but I think I’d rather pass on that one, thank you.

With all of the vegetables I eat, aren’t I taking food away from animals? Not quite!The industry makes a lot more money growing vegetables to feed cattle for slaughter than they do to grow vegetables for those who cannot afford to eat anything else, so why bother! Growing vegetables for animals facing inevitable death is much more profitable than feeding those whose life is in the hands of industrialization.

Since we’re on the topic of mass production of livestock, why don’t we talk about global warming? What’s that you say? Animals are an important part of the environment? Well,  you would be right in many cases, however, the factory farming industry is detrimental to the environment. Not only does the methane produced by cattle attribute to 18 percent of greenhouse gasses according to a Cambridge University study conducted in 2009, but this mass production is the cause of nearly 90 percent of deforestation in the Amazon rain forest.

But I’m missing something, aren’t I? Meat is good right? We need it for our health and for protein and to grow big and strong! As it turns out, the average American is actually consuming 1.5 times the daily recommended value of protein, according to a John’s Hopkins University study. This over-consumption also contributes to heart disease, type two diabetes, obesity, and even cancer.

Most of these processed proteins people are consuming contain antibiotics. That’s a good thing though, isn’t it? Doctors give us antibiotics! In reality, these antibiotics found in our factory-farmed meats are actually very damaging to our health. Let’s say, after a big ole’ juicy steak, I come down with salmonella. The easy fix would be to go to the doctor, get an antibiotic, and be done with it. However, the bacteria presumably “treated” by these antibiotics have mutated so that the livestock can no longer fight off these common infections, according to a report published by the American Academy of Pediatrics, and will spread with a vengeance to other cattle, and even through our consumption. I suggest thinking about that the next time you cut into your chicken dinner.

Please, continue to apply a stigma to us vegans. A lifestyle based on peace, love, and the well-being of animals can only equate to angry, dirty, preachy hippies who are only doing this for bragging rights. Sign me up!

Finally, my biggest apology is to those who have not gathered the proper education on the vegan lifestyle. I’m sorry that plant-based proteins are not easily accessible, and  I’m sorry that people who still eat meat cannot conceptualize that what they are consuming once had life, sentience, and the right to live.


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