Veganism: Dairy and Vegans

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  • Topic: Dairy, Milk, Meat
  • Pages : 5 (1826 words )
  • Download(s) : 126
  • Published : October 8, 1999
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Veganism can dramatically alter ones life forever, often producing deep emotional changes. Although choosing veganism is a source of great joy, it can also create friction among family and friends. Cultural pressures, the demand for conformity, and the personal desire for acceptance can challenge a vegans confidence and self-esteem. Because vegans so acutely see and feel the suffering of the world, and are at odds with many widely accepted social customs, some will invariably experience occasional bouts of the blues.

Vegans who experience anger, pain, or frustration for extended amounts of time may become depressed and exhausted from maintain such strong emotions. Feelings of loneliness, isolation, or rejection can compound matters, leading to despondency in an otherwise emotionally healthy person. Holidays and celebrations such as birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, and reunions are opportunities to reconnect with family and friend and feel like a part of the broader culture. However, most gatherings center around customs and practices that are very upsetting to vegans. Meat is typically the center of the holiday table and the focal point of picnics and barbecues. Although most happy occasions are intended to convey a spirit of fellowship and conviviality, they can be extremely uncomfortable and unpleasant experiences for vegans. Consequently, it is not surprising that many vegans feel torn over their allegiances and may distance themselves from family and community celebrations. They may opt instead to participate in alternative festivities or start their own traditions with others who share their perspectives and ideals.

The most difficult challenge for me in being a vegan is the separation and distance. I often feel far from others who are not vegan. It is no longer comfortable for me to sit down at a table where animal products are being served. I feel that I know too much, and it is so painful to be aware of the profound suffering and misery that is represented on the table. This is especially true at celebrations such as Passover, Christmas, Thanksgiving, etc... where the the holiday is about freedom and gratitude. Oppressing and harming others while we speak words of thanksgiving feels hypocritical and wrong to me.

People who profess to be animal advocates yet eat meat, eggs, or dairy products or wear leather shoes and belts apply contrary rules of ethics. They are known as people with selective compassion. Their actions imply that one group of animals– the one they represent– has a greater right to life than another and suggest that sacrificing habit, fashion, and beauty, comfort, or taste is a worse evil than taking an animal’s life or making an animal suffer Some activities vegans are against are rodeos, marine mammal parks, circuses, zoos, fishing, racing( dog and horse) and hunting which is probably the worst activity. Hunting, hunters proclaim, instills in its devotees such noble qualities as self-reliance, ruggedness, discipline, and courage. But in fact, hunters skulk about the forest in camouflage, wait in ambush for their victims, and kill at a long range with overpowering, technological weapons, often going to extraordinary lengths to lure their unsuspecting prey into a violent death. Equally important is the fact that hunters are rarely in any danger from the animals that they hunt. They inflict pain and death on creatures who cannot hurt them. Even animals who could pose a threat, such as bears or cougars, would normally run rather than fight a human unless they are cornered or protecting their young. Hunters entrap and frequently shoot terrified animals in the back as they flee for their lives. Often, hunters tempt animals with a false promise of a mate, and then kill the trusting creatures who are duped by their bait. Also 17 million animals are trapped in the United States each year for fur, many traps are...
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