Once upon a time I was a bit of an asshole! True story.
Back in June 2016 when I first found out about the hellish horrors, we humans, put billions upon billions of animals through every year – I went crazy.
Not literally crazy. Not Jack Nicholson crazy.
But I didn’t know how to deal with it. It was always on my mind. I pestered my family with videos of live cattle being beheaded in slaughterhouses because I thought this would jolt them into changing their ways.
The problem is many people who live the plant-based or vegan lifestyle find ourselves in the same pattern of behaviour.
We want people and animals to live in peace, with less cruelty and bloodshed, and more berries and chickpeas – and we want it to happen NOW.
So we find ourselves shoving our ideas down the throats of others like an angry, catholic priest from the 1930s while making ourselves isolated and even miserable.
What do I think? Personally, I want this peaceful world to become a reality because who wants to live in an unequal, cruel, nightmarish world full of death and crossbones? Maybe Blackbeard but not me.
At the same time, I don’t feel the need anymore to judge people for what they eat. Or wear. Why would I care? Why should I give a fluffy duck about what others chew on?
Most of my friends eat meat and they’re terrific because it’s not all they do.
What? Iarlaith – but you’re a hippy, dippy VEGAN!
That means you judge meat-eaters, it means you wear baggy psychedelic t-shirts and blame every problem in the world on goose eggs and goat’s milk!
You see that’s the thing with labels.
When people hear you’re black, you’re an atheist, you’re gay, you’re a townie, you’re a Jew, you’re Scottish, you’re vegan, you’re this or that and blablabla…
They start projecting an identity onto you that neatly fits the label(s).
Do black people listen to Margo Price?
Do gay people listen to Metallica?
Do vegans let other people finish their double bacon cheeseburger?
Are black people just black? Or does it happen to be the colour of their skin (it’s usually more of a hazelnut-brown anyway)?
Are gay people only gay? Or are they just attracted to members of the same sex?
Does the label vegan define every aspect of who I am?
For me it’s the idea that we are independent from labels and that thinking you know someone because you’ve read their label is misguided – is at least true for me.
So let’s stop looking at other people’s plates and simply eat from our own. Let’s lead instead of lash out, and maybe, just maybe, folks will become naturally curious – instead of being toxic we can be magnetic. And we won’t have to sacrifice good people for good principles.
What do you think?
Is it better to call out meat-eaters or is it better to love them equally and accept them?
Do you think labels change the way we think?
What is your honest opinion on this post?
What do you think of the song ‘Can’t Stop‘ by the Red Hot Chili Peppers?
Please let me know in the comments.
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All my love to my plantastic AND meat-eating readers – have an exquisite day you gorgeous person!
Peacefully and Respectfully,
– Iarlaith, The Sweet Spud