“If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be vegetarian.”
~ Paul McCartney.
We vegans/vegetarians spend a lot of time defending and explaining our decision not to eat meat. Where I live, in the Midwest, vegetarianism is often seen as antisocial, offensive and downright subversive.
That has changed a lot in the last decade or so, but I’m still amazed at some people’s amazement at my stand on herbivorousness. These are people with dogs and cats, who would be horrified at the thought of serving their pets up for a casual brunch, and I never can understand the disconnect between that and the bacon that ends up on their plate.
My husband often accuses me of “getting on my soapbox” and he’s right—I have a lot of emotional words to say about the subject of the food we do or do not eat. But I also try (try!) hard to respect everyone’s right to make their own choices in regards to their diet, even as I go around mumbling about the fact that the juicy roasted chicken they are currently tucking into didn’t get to make a similar choice.
I’m not going to lie, sometimes I get sick of hearing my own voice on the subject—sometimes I even wish I didn’t care as much as I do. It’s so darn inconvenient. But then I see pictures like these and I remember why it’s important.
I don’t need to write a dissertation on the morality of making the choice to be vegetarian if it’s possible to do so (I do realize that there are some—increasingly rare circumstances—where people need to eat meat in order to survive), or at least, I shouldn’t need to.
These images say it all.
Every sentient creature has a heart and a soul. That matters. To ignore this simple truth lessens our humanity. To honor it, brings light.
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Editor: Travis May
Photos: Provided by author