Letter: Vegan picture doesn’t match experience

Graphic by Lori Deaton

I read with curiosity Larry Abbott’s letter to the editor “Has Outrage Addiction Taken Over Animal Rights Issue?” [Dec. 13, Xpress]. It was surprising he compared vegans and vegetarians with the abhorrent behavior of Trump and some of his supporters. Being a vegan, I naturally know many vegans and vegetarians, and these people are peaceful [and] healthy, and love both animals and people. We are not threatening anyone with verbal or physical violence. That type of behavior belongs only to a small minority.

I do think it is helpful when we dialogue and educate people not only on the suffering of animals raised for consumption but also the tremendous health benefits of being vegan. If we are on “the far left,” you will need to also include the American Heart Association, that states “many studies show that vegetarians seem to have a lower risk of obesity, coronary artery disease, hypertension, diabetes and some forms of cancer” as well as the American Diabetes Association, that states “a vegetarian diet can help prevent and manage diabetes.”

On the contrary, a meatless diet is becoming more mainstream, and awareness around animal rights is improving, thanks to education, compassion and the desire to live a healthy life in harmony with our animal friends. Please join us.

— Miriam Hard


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4 thoughts on “Letter: Vegan picture doesn’t match experience

  1. SpareChange


    “That type of behavior belongs only to a small minority.” This is an example of a statement that is probably factual on the face of it, but which is being used in an attempt to make a broader point which does not hold up to stricter scrutiny. The original letter writer was focusing on the fact that some vegan activists were repeatedly and increasingly resorting to coercion, harassment and threats of violence to push their “-ism,” or belief system. Ms. Hard is suggesting that because she does not personally know of anyone who has engaged in this activity, and because it likely is a minority of vegans who do resort to the tactics of violence and harassment, that somehow the unacceptable tactics and behavior by other vegans either does not exist, or does not constitute a real threat.

    Curiously, neither in this letter, nor in the several other letters and comments made by Ms. Hard on this issue over many months, does she just simply and unequivocally acknowledge the fact that these things have happened, and condemn those vegans who have perpetrated these acts. Could it be that the the standard of being “peaceful, healthy, and loving” is being applied selectively? Is the safety and peace of mind and feelings of security of omnivores somehow less important that that of vegans and vegetarians? It seems a logical conclusion to draw in the absence of any direct criticism of the actions which have now been repeatedly described and documented.

    • miriam

      In response to your comments, Spare Change, I can understand where you are coming from. From my position of nonviolence towards humans and animals, it seemed obvious that I do find any verbal or physical violence unacceptable and felt that came through in my letter. Compassion was the theme of the letter in addition to health benefits. I could have said “that type of behavior belongs only to a small minority and is unacceptable”, but I think most readers intuited that was my position as well as the position of most plant based folks.

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