Some vegan love…

I got banned from an atheist group a few years ago because I’m vegan. It wasn’t against the rules or at least their stated rules. The mocking started out slowly, a few jokes about vegans… a few comments about how sanctimonious we are. Then it grew to the point where it seemed like the group talked more about vegans than atheism. And one person asked an honest, simple question. Where do vegans get their protein? And I answered.

Within seconds I was facing a barrage of questions? Why didn’t I care about the poor little mice being killed by threshers? Why didn’t I care about the children being worked like slaves to make my phone? I asked that person, the moderator, what phone she used because if she have a fair trade phone, I’d love to know the brand. She had no idea. She didn’t care about the kids, she informed me. She just didn’t like me because I was vegan. And then I was blocked.

When asked, people will claim they don’t dislike vegans per se, they’re just against the militant ones… the sanctimonious ones. You know those vegans. Except that’s not true. Know who else is sanctimonious? Mothers. You go onto a parenting forum and, faster than a toddler can drop a pacifier, there’s going to be a battle (especially about a toddler dropping a pacifier). And, sure, there’s groups devoted to laughing at sanctimommies but it isn’t the widespread hatred veganism receives. Hatred. For trying to do as little harm as possible. All you need to do in order to be “sanctimonious” is to have people find out you don’t eat meat. I think that a lot of people need to look through their dictionary for the real definition.

SciBabe  complained today that vegetarians are petitioning In N Out burger (a U.S. burger chain) for a veggie burger to be added to their menu and, of course, vitriol followed. You’d think from the comments that the head of PeTA was holding a gun to the owner of In N Out’s head, demanding kale and nutritional yeast get added to every product on their menu. Nope, they simply asked for an additional item to be placed onto there, something that’s available at almost every burger chain in Canada. I looked at the hatred and decided it wasn’t worth my time. I vented on my page instead and got this…

“I’m talking about the vegans who go into a fast food place and bitch because there aren’t any healthy options like there are absolutely no other places to go but of course since they’re vegan everyone on the planet has to accommodate them.”

“Like, I know there are vegetarian and vegan restaurants here. I’m not of either persuasion. I don’t like tofu or many other veget./veg. dishes, so I don’t go to those restaurants. I wouldn’t go there and ask that they add a hamburger to their menu.”

Do people not realize that vegans and vegetarians have family and friends who eat meat? We aren’t hatched somewhere then come winging in, fully grown, cawing “Meat is Murder”. We have friends who want to eat out with us, family who want to go for a group dinner, and sometimes those friends and family want to eat somewhere more meat based. That’s how I ended up sitting at Red Lobster a few years ago. I ended up at Swiss Chalet the same way. It’s also how I learned that Swiss Chalet has a vegan burger and that their dipping sauce is vegan too. I used to drink that sauce as a kid, that was an amazing find.

Plus vegan isn’t a type of restaurant, it’s a philosophy of doing as little harm as possible. My current favourite restaurant is mostly vegan. They also have grass fed, pasture raised beef; it would be no problem getting a burger there. That being said, it’s vegan and has vegenaise on top but most people wouldn’t realize it wasn’t meat and mayo.

Know why I think people bash vegans? Because we’re a minority and one of the last groups that are socially acceptable to hate. And that’s simply not cool.

Vegan Mom of a proudly militant vegan offspring

p.s. I only barely tolerate tofu

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11 thoughts on “Some vegan love…

  1. Honestly I think some of the vitriol that gets directed toward vegans comes from people who, deep down, are the afriad that we might be right. That maybe it actually is wrong to hurt others unnessecarily. So they have to convince themselves that we’re contemptible and ridiculous in order to avoid the implications of that.

  2. I have been vegan for exactly 9 days. It’s been interesting. The reason is mostly because I ran out of arguments with the kids. I knew they were essentially right. The main surprise so far is that it’s pretty easy. Also that I’m not in any danger of losing any weight ;-). I can still have alcohol, sugar, caffeine and any number of delicious oils and butters. (I’m very carefully not crowing about any of this on Facebook though)!

    • Without in any way suggesting what you eat: I have eaten many pizzas that have no cheese and find them to be pretty good. Granted, they don’t have anything melty on them. I also like to buy pizza at Blaze Pizza — they have vegan cheese as an option, and they make it super easy to order it that way. It’s a chain, I’m not sure if it is US only (I’m in the US).

      • Pizza Nova and Panago have vegan pizza too but I’m not sure if they’re just in Canada. I find that garlic stuffed olives give a bit of a cheesy taste to pizza while Jeremy likes Earth Island (aka Follow Your Heart) cheese on theirs.

  3. All the truth! I love (hate) whenever people think that requesting a vegan option from a business that seeks to increase profit by any and all means necessary, is such an obscene request.

  4. Being a vegan is hard, at least it was very hard for me here in Mexico city. I was vegan and later vegetarian during childhood because of severe alergies, not any other reason, and it was damn hard. Every school trip, festival, event, I just had nothing to eat. No matter how hungry I was I knew fair well I couldn’t even taste it if I did not wanted to feel like I was about to die. I tried anyways, a couple of times, with hideous results. I never really experienced the hate since I wasn’t vegan/vegetarian for choice, but I did experienced a lot of hunger everytime, everytime my family went somewhere to eat. Even sometimes at family reunions at a relatives HOUSE they’d forgot to cook something I could eat. (Which was hideous, by the way, they we’re your family AND the grownups and theoretically should have thought about that). It was very hard, and socially isolating. Since EVERYONE ELSE it’s happilly eating their McBurger at the school trip while the only thing you could actually eat there ack then which had no meatt were the fried potatoes (and I’m talking of the time I was a vegetarian already, and not a vegan anymore), not to mention my parents sent me with very little money each time.

    I’ve just remembered my childhood sucked big time xDDDD.

    That aside, I know it’s hard being a vegan. It’s sometimes even hard being a vegetarian. And not because of proteins or lack of existing food, but for people and lack of acceptance. I am not either vegan or vegetarian anymore (I just do not agree with the philosophy, maybe because I’m slightly a more violent person than that (?)) but I’m aware of how hard it can be, and in the end, I firmly believe that vegetarian/vegan hate is way out of line. So what? You don’t agree with them so what? Don’t eat the same, damn it. Period. It’s harder to accomodate? Yeah, but guess what, we do that for everyone else. If this or that person just don’t like this or that to eat, we take that to consideration when we cook. Why is it any different with vegan/vegetarians? Do I agree with them, no, but this is not about my opinion, is about theirs. They have the right to decide what they want to eat, that’s not for anyone else to decide. If even when it’s about health reasons we can not force a person to eat what they don’t want, then why on earth is it any different here??? It seems so… dumb.

    It’s not your decision. It’s theirs. Everyone it’s always so invasive… I don’t know what it is about. Let’s asume those “ultra carnivorous defenders” were actually right. Vegans are sanctimonious or (I’ve heard this) just unnable to accept reality or too egoistic. Let’s asume that’s all true. So what? When a person with those caracteristics comes along, we usually just roll our eyes and try to accomodate, because thats, usually, the smartest thing to do. Or haven’t we all met THAT DIVA who would always look at food like it was all absolutelly disgusting? And what do we do? We try to please her. Next time she comes, we have something in store for her. And she’s considerably less likeable. Why does anyone act different with vegan/vegetarians??

    I don’t get it.

    That aside… from the beggining of the post… atheists can be hard. Skepticism, Irony, cinism and a lot of things are very rooted in there. Any opinion you have that is not entirely skeptical it’s gonna be severously punished. I can tell. I identify myself as an atheist but not every atheist seems to agree with me, since I’m not skeptic. I’m more of a humanist point of view. I have magical thinking, I admit it. I just don’t believe in god. Or follow any religion. I thought that was what being an atheist was about, but aparently many atheists are convinced you can not be one unless you’re a total skeptic, you don’t understand magical thinking and (in some extreme cases) you’re a complete as*hole.

    So, just don’t think a lot about it. It’s sadly common in atheistic groups but you can always find nice people in the corners of the comments and on time you end up teaming up. And whenever someone acuses you of being whatever for being a vegan, I think you can tell them pretty much the same I told my grandmother when she told me transgenderism was definitelly a mental illness even though I’ve already explained it was otherwise.

    “You know what? Allright. It’s whatever you say it is. But is not up to you.”

    I honestly don’t think you need anymore explanations.

  5. Hi Michelle,
    I agree completely. I have only very recently decided to try vegan and it’s insane that my brain has already started to prepare itself for the comments and jokes. How ridiculous is that!! If I said I was on some crazy fad diet where I only chew on balsa wood because some famous pop star does no one would blink a flipping eye!! So I’m making a point of not giving a monkeys about what anyone else thinks, there will be some who flaunt their lifestyles in front of you big style vegan or not, as far as I’m concerned it has nothing to do with them so I’m going to forget it and besides if it all becomes annoying just google cute animal pics and it’ll all be forgotten 😉
    Angela

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