[Note: The title of this blog was extracted from the article: http://freefromharm.org/food-and-culture/dealing-with-carnistic-defenses-all-this-talk-about-animals-is-making-me-hungry-for-a-juicy-steak/
Quite often I will run up against some block-head who will make a snide remark about my being a vegan or veganism in general. Comments are either made to my face, my blog or another blogger’s site that I have made comments to. Most of the time, I ignore the remarks because I know the person is trying to taunt me. Feeding into their childish taunts doesn’t seem to make much sense. If I haven’t said it five times, I haven’t said it once, you cannot argue with stupid. Besides, I think Forrest Gump said it best: “Stupid is as stupid does.”
And then today, I received the following article from from Free From Harm and learned there is a better way to handle such remarks.
Below is a snippet of the article that I received. If you’d like to read the entire story, please click here:
Dealing with Carnistic Defenses: ‘All This Talk About Animals Is Making Me Hungry for a Juicy Steak!’
By Free From Harm Staff Writers | September 25, 2012 | Categories: Food and Culture
courtesy of Bizarro Comics, bizarro.com
Have you ever found yourself in a situation with someone who completely derails the discussion with a statement that goes something like this: “All this talk about animals is making me hungry for a steak!” or “All this talk about cows is making me crave a big hunk of cheese!”
Some of us would find this so off-putting, we would retaliate with something insulting and end the discussion then and there. But that’s actually the worst thing you could do. It’s exactly what these statements intend to do, that is, shut down the discussion. And their sincere passive-aggressive hope is that you will shut it down, leaving them with the last word.
So should you call their bluff?, ask them to admit to you and themselves that animals mean nothing more to them than a cheap piece of meat? Some would argue, it’s just not worth the energy to continue at this point. I completely disagree. It’s a golden opportunity to show the conviction you have in your beliefs and to point out to them what’s really behind such a statement. Because when they realize what’s behind it, I see them backpedalling.
Put aside your emotions for a moment and instead read between the lines at what someone is really telling you when they make such a statement and then find a creative way to respond that will take the higher ground and restore the discussion back to one that takes the interests of animals seriously.
Interesting posts and recipes! I’m not vegan or vegetarian, but admire and respect your choice – it is healthier for you and the planet. Maybe if I try some of those recipes I’ll move in that direction 🙂 I find it strange that people would taunt you or anyone because of a healthy and socially conscious lifestyle.
Thanks for your positive words. It does seem foolish that people would taunt me, but sadly it’s true. Generally, if I attend a function or a party, I tend to keep my vegan lifestyle quiet. If I do happen to mention that I am a vegan, some people become intrigued and ask a lot of questions like, “So what do you eat.” and others will use the Bible saying it is our God given right to eat and rule over all animals. Well, I don’t believe in the Bible nor do I subscribe to any organized religion. So the “Bible Argument” falls short with me. In any event, I think what it boils down to is people feel attacked or judged because I choose a vegan lifestyle, in addition to speaking out against cruelty towards all animals (including farm animals). These people do not want to face the reality that most of the animal products they are consuming came from animals who suffered. They also refuse to change their views. I could go on, but you get my point. I don’t shove my vegan lifestyle down anyone’s throat, (that’s why I have a blog), so why people feel the need to verbally attack me is beyond my understanding. Clearly, I am hitting a nerve. Or at least, so I believe.
While I’ve never personally thought eating meat is in principle wrong, your point on cruelty to farm animals is impossible to deny. Mix conditions on the “farms”, genetic engineering, and reports about how animals are treated like factory parts to simply produce a product, and it’s enough to make one sick. I’ve got a lot of friends who are involved in focusing on local food and understanding where our food comes from. The cruelty is symptomatic of a consumerism that puts profit ahead of ethics and humanity. I know I’m working to make concern for where the food comes from a serious consideration in my decision on what to eat.
That is fantastic. I’m so glad to read you are keeping an open mind. Buying and supporting local is the way to go. In my ideal world, animals would be taken off the menu but I realize that is a pipe dream. There is a compelling speech from Philip Wollen on Free From Harm that is worth reading, even if you have no desire to give up meat. The impact of producing meat is astounding! I posted his speech in my blog. http://girrlearth.com/2012/07/13/animal-rights-is-now-the-greatest-social-justice-issue-since-the-abolition-of-slavery-philip-wollen/