Are Extremist Vegans a Problem?
Should extremist vegans be a concern for all vegan and non-vegans? Must we hide in our bunkers and wait for the “militant vegans” of the world to organically disappear into oblivion? That depends on what we consider an extremist vegan. I did what any reasonable person does when in need of answers and definitions – I turned to Google.
The first article that came up on my search results was from The Independent , a British online publisher of news. Here is the article – Vegans hurt their case by being too extreme by Janet Street-Porter.
What better way to see how something is defined than by the interpretation of a mainstream media news outlet?
She starts her piece with the following subheading-
“Shunning food which you consider harms animals is a personal choice – not one I would adopt, but let’s agree to disagree”
I did not think I would be annoyed before reading the first paragraph but here we are. If you want to disucss vegans who cause property damage, physically harm people, and kill innocent humans – I am all for having a dialogue on such forms of extremity. I do not condone bad behavior even if it comes from my side. I do not want innocent pigs to be harmed the same way I do not want people to be harmed. But by the looks of this article, the actual extremists are not the purview here.
It is not my “consideration” that an animal is being harmed. This is not an esoteric opinion that vegans have when we say an animal had to be harmed to create your sandwich. Is slaughter not a form of harm? Is keeping a pig or cow in a small confined space until it is their turn to die not an act of violence? There is enough documentaries, books, and videos that display the physical and emotional anguish an animal has to suffer just to end up on your plate.
The absurdity of that opener is akin to the following fictional (I hope) sub-headings:
“Shunning slave labor which you consider to be harmful toward Africans is a personal personal choice…let’s agree to disagree”
“Shunning Nazis which you consider to be harmful towards Jews is a personal choice…let’s agree to disagree”
“Shunning Isis which you consider to be harmful towards peaceful Muslims is a personal choice…let’s agree to disagree”
“Shunning pedophilia which you consider to be harmful towards children is a person choice… let’s agree to disagree”
Moving on to the actual article:
“A peaceful protest is not a tool in their armoury – these evangelists prefer an anonymous threat, a graffitied slogan or a hysterical rant.”
I do not support anonymous threats. The issue with anonymity is it can be a meat-eater making such threats on twitter to make vegans look bad. Have you not heard of the term agent provocateur? Per Google, it is a person who induces others to break the law so that they can be convicted. Vegans are also subject to anonymous threats and public ridicule. It happens on both sides.
As far as graphitized slogans, I oppose property damage. If graffiti is done with chalk or spray paint that will come right off after a light rain, let’s not be a bunch of Karens. Permanent damage to private property that requires excessive effort is one thing. Chalk that will disintegrate after a quick sun shower is immaterial.
When is a peaceful protest not a hysterical rant? Ranting, screaming, singing, and dancing are not acts of violence.
Janet mentions an incident when a vegan influencer by the name of Joey Carbstrong was having lunch with his interviewer from Radio 2, Jeremy Vine. During the lunch, Jeremy was eating a ham and cheese sandwich. Janet writes:
“The offending object triggered a tirade of abuse, with the ham denigrated as “the flesh of a dead pig [and] the dead body of an animal that didn’t want to die”. The cheese was no better…
He believed it came from “a mother who had her children taken from her, and had hands shoved in her anus and was artificially inseminated with bull semen. This is probably why vegans would say a dairy farmer is akin to a rapist.”
Is ham not the flesh of a dead pig? Did the pig willingly go into the slaughter house and commit itself to death? The pig was born in captivity and created for slaughter. These are creatures as smart if not smarter than dogs. A dog reacts immediately to a threat or pain. As does a pig.
As far as cheese goes, everything that Joey Carbstrong stated is on point. These are not “beliefs”. These are facts. How else does a cow get pregnant? Farmers do not wait for bulls and cows to naturally mate. They artificially inseminate them with large needles by force. If this were done to a woman without her consent, that is rape. Why can we not call it rape when we do it to an innocent animal? Oh right, because using such language threatens a billion dollar industry that most of the media shills for.
Do vegans at times damage property? Yes and I do not support that. I, like many other vegans, support getting results through the confines of state and federal laws.
Who Are The Real Extremists?
Many vegans do use strong language and imagery when posting on social media. Unfortunately, none of this messaging used by vegans is exaggerated. We do not partake in Fakenews. We are simply showing photos, videos, and describing events that are happening right now all over the world. The brutality of the factory animal farming industry we share on our platforms are the realities behind our chic-fil-a sandwiches. Talking about these subjects does not make us militant. This makes us conveyers of truth.
Militancy is when you have a government create laws that make it nearly impossible and illegal to practice journalism on factory animal farms. That is exactly what Ag-Gag Laws are. There is nothing more militant than creating a legal climate where if one were to report on the truth of factory animal farms, they may end up in a cage.
So should we be scared of extremist vegans? There are very few and far in between.
I think the bigger threat today is the diabolical partnership between massive animal agricultural companies and their allies in the media. Perhaps there is a financial relationship involved. Or it could be the talking heads on television getting defensive when a vegan calls out their hypocrisy. You cannot be a feminist and drink milk. You cannot be against the separation of migrant children from their parents yet fund the separation of calves and their mothers. What is a pundit to do when their double-standard of morality is called out? They will defend their speciesism and the speciesism of factory animal farmers. Our concern should remain focused on all parties involved who condone the continued production of animal products on a massive industrialized scale.