Elsewhere the paper notes that vegetarians and vegans (including athletes) 'meet and exceed requirements' for protein. And, to render the whole we-should-worry-about-getting-enough-protein-and-therefore-eat-meat idea even more useless, other data suggests that excess animal protein intake is linked with osteoporosis, kidney disease, calcium stones in the urinary tract, and some cancers. Despite some persistent confusion, it is clear that vegetarians and vegans tend to have more optimal protein consumption than omnivores.
Jonathan Safran Foer
I find it very annoying that so many animal advocates talk about the difficulty of being vegan. Many animal advocates are inclined to make the issue their suffering and not the animals' suffering, and I suppose that accounts for part of the reason that veganism is portrayed as such a "sacrifice." And many animal advocates are not vegans, or are "flexible vegans," which means that they do not observe veganism at all or not consistently, and emphasizing the supposed difficulty of veganism is part of justifying their own behavior.
Gary L. Francione
In Vegas, you have an audience you can't find anywhere else. It's from all over the country. You play Seattle, everyone's from Seattle. But in Vegas, you have six from Seattle, a bunch from L.A., some local Las Vegans and maybe a farmer from Iowa. In Vegas, you learn the ins and outs of holding a room because of that great spectrum of folks.
Some people's glasses are half full. I'm the one drinking them. Some people have forgotten that Pluto is still a planet. I still remember my childhood. Some people are vegans. I have common sense. Some people call me Maurice. Some people call me the Gangsta of Love. Some people just want to live... but me, I'm the one still alive.
Be a good example and a positive ambassador for vegan living, and be patient and understanding with people who aren't vegan. Support any move non-vegans make away from animal consumption toward plant-based eating. Nurture even small positive steps, as these tend to empower people and build momentum toward bigger steps.
The problem with labels is that they lead to stereotypes and stereotypes lead to generalizations and generalizations lead to assumptions and assumptions lead back to stereotypes. It's a vicious cycle, and after you go around and around a bunch of times you end up believing that all vegans only eat cabbage and all gay people love musicals.
I don't believe vegans (or vegetarians) who still get their (packaged, preservative/chemical-ridden) food from industrial food systems have any righteous ground to stand on, nor do I think a deep look at the sentient life of plants or the true environmental impact of agriculture permits them any comfortable distance from cruelty. Everything in this world eats something else to survive, and that something else, whether running on blood or chlorophyll, would always rather continue to live rather than become sustenance for another. No animal wants to be penned up and milked, or caged and harvested, and you've never seen plants growing in regimented lines of their own accord.
Every November, during the certain holiday people love so much, people take a dead turkey, open up the dead turkey's ass, or carve out a really big hole in their ass, take some stuffing and shove it inside their dead empty ass, and use the little dead ass as an oven to bake some bread. Somebody else's dead empty bacteria-laden ass to make bread? Ass bread?! And people think vegans are weird? Because we eat tofu? And rice, and beans, and lentils?
For us hunting wasn't a sport. It was a way to be intimate with nature, that intimacy providing us with wild unprocessed food free from pesticides and hormones and with the bonus of having been produced without the addition of great quantities of fossil fuel. In addition, hunting provided us with an ever scarcer relationship in a world of cities, factory farms, and agribusiness, direct responsibility for taking the lives that sustained us. Lives that even vegans indirectly take as the growing and harvesting of organic produce kills deer, birds, snakes, rodents, and insects. We lived close to the animals we ate. We knew their habits and that knowledge deepened our thanks to them and the land that made them.
Vegetarians, and their Hezbollah-like splinter-faction, the vegans, are a persistent irritant to any chef worth a damn. To me, life without veal stock, pork fat, sausage, organ meat, demi-glace, or even stinky cheese is a life not worth living. Vegetarians are the enemy of everything good and decent in the human spirit, an affront to all I stand for, the pure enjoyment of food. The body, these waterheads imagine, is a temple that should not be polluted by animal protein. It's healthier, they insist, though every vegetarian waiter I've worked with is brought down by any rumor of a cold. Oh, I'll accomodate them, I'll rummage around for something to feed them, for a 'vegetarian plate', if called on to do so. Fourteen dollars for a few slices of grilled eggplant and zucchini suits my food cost fine.
There are some animal advocates who say that to maintain that veganism is the moral baseline is objectionable because it is 'judgmental, ' or constitutes a judgment that veganism is morally preferable to vegetarianism and a condemnation that vegetarians (or other consumers of animal products) are 'bad' people. Yes to the first part; no to the second. There is no coherent distinction between flesh and other animal products. They are all the same and we cannot justify consuming any of them. To say that you do not eat flesh but that you eat dairy or eggs or whatever, or that you don't wear fur but you wear leather or wool, is like saying that you eat the meat from spotted cows but not from brown cows; it makers no sense whatsoever. The supposed 'line' between meat and everything else is just a fantasy-an arbitrary distinction that is made to enable some exploitation to be segmented off and regarded as 'better' or as morally acceptable. This is not a condemnation of vegetarians who are not vegans; it is, however, a plea to those people to recognize their actions do not conform with a moral principle that they claim to accept and that all animal products are the result of imposing suffering and death on sentient beings. It is not a matter of judging individuals; it is, however, a matter of judging practices and institutions. And that is a necessary component of ethical living.
Gary L. Francione
To see how we separate, we first have to examine how we get together. Friendships begin with interest. We talk to someone. They say something interesting and we have a conversation about it. However, common interests don't create lasting bonds. Otherwise, we would become friends with everyone with whom we had a good conversation. Similar interests as a basis for friendship doesn't explain why we become friends with people who have completely different interests than we do. In time, we discover common values and ideals. However, friendship through common values and ideals doesn't explain why atheists and those devout in their faith become friends. Vegans wouldn't have non-vegan friends. In the real world, we see examples of friendships between people with diametrically opposed views. At the same time, we see cliques form in churches and small organizations dedicated to a particular cause, and it's not uncommon to have cliques inside a particular belief system dislike each other. So how do people bond if common interests and common values don't seem to be the catalyst for lasting friendships? I find that people build lasting connections through common problems and people grow apart when their problems no longer coincide. This is why couples especially those with children tend to lose their single friends. Their primary problems have become vastly different. The married person's problems revolve around family and children. The single person's problem revolves around relationships with others and themselves. When the single person talks about their latest dating disaster, the married person is thinking I've already solved this problem. When the married person talks about finding good daycare, the single person is thinking how boring the problems of married life can be. Eventually marrieds and singles lose their connection because they don't have common problems. I look back at friends I had in junior high and high school. We didn't become friends because of long nights playing DandD. That came later. We were all loners and outcasts in our own way. We had one shared problem that bound us together: how to make friends and relate to others while feeling so 'different'. That was the problem that made us friends. Over the years as we found our own answers and went to different problems, we grew apart. Stick two people with completely different values and belief systems on a deserted island where they have to cooperate to survive. Then stick two people with the same values and interests together at a party. Which pair do you think will form the stronger bond? When I was 20, I was living on my own. I didn't have many friends who were in college because I couldn't relate to them. I was worrying about how to pay rent and trying to stretch my last few dollars for food at the end of the month. They were worried about term papers. In my life now, the people I spend the most time with have kids, have careers, are thinking about retirement and are figuring out their changing roles and values as they get older. These are problems that I relate to. We solve them in different ways because our values though compatible aren't similar. I feel connected hearing about how they've chosen to solve those issues in a way that works for them.