I’ve been vegan now for 19 years just about. The following image was attached to a tweet. It contains probably the dumbest argument against being vegan I’ve come across in all that time. For a start it doesn’t make sense.
Ok so it’s clearly a comedienne here, trying to be funny, but please try harder. I suppose she’s just trying to be outrageous (racist) to get a few laughs but it’s crap. It did get me thinking about some of the spurious arguments against vegans I’ve heard over the years. So here’s a selection, in no particular order. And I’ve provided some responses to these too. It may be useful to someone.
Spurious anti-vegan argument number one
I heard this one very recently in the context of a in-law family situation. These instances can be tricky if there is a high level of vegan-ignorance present. There usually is, to be honest!
You’re in my house, I make allowances for you and cook your tofu so you should cook meat for me
At least there is some logic to this. It’s a fairly ungenerous logic and does reveal an almost complete ignorance of vegan living. Someone saying this really does consider you a bit of a nuisance. There’s only a certain amount of generosity. Catering for guests is generous, after all.
Anyway, the best response to this sort of comment is to ask whether they’d expect a Hindu to cook their roast beef for them. Or would they ask a Muslim or Jewish guest to cook sausages for breakfast. I doubt it.
The crux of the mater is whether “it’s against my beliefs” is any less valid than “it’s against my religion”? It isn’t.
Nuisance vegan comment number two
Those damned incisors! We’ve all got ‘em. Some people will use these teeth to make statements like this.
If we’re only meant to eat veggies why have we got incisors?
Well this really is a no-brainer. The incisors in human mouths are hardly equivalent to those of your standard domestic cat. Let alone a lion.
Ours are tiny little things. Of course, cavemen didn’t need them for hunting as they had weapons. Our incisors are not larger enough to do any serious lion type activity.
Besides the rest of our teeth are grinders and our mouths work differently to those of carnivorous species. Our jaws move from side to side unlike the huge majority of carnivores. Ours are more like herbivore teeth than carnivore teeth, that is certain. Ask a dentist!
And then there’s vegetarian gorillas, very similar to us genetically, who have massive incisors compared to us. Yet they are vegetarian. The incisor argument is spurious!
I think the whole we’re meant to eat meat/veggies argument is moot, anyway. Humans adapted to their environment as they spread across the globe. They survived exactly because they were able to live off a wide range of diets. That’s why Escimos can live off animal only diets and billions in the Indian sub-continent do very well on rice and dahl.
It was because of cows that I became vegan in the first place. And the third spurious argument against nuisance vegans concerns cows and milk.
Cows need to be milked because they are in pain otherwise
I first heard this when I’d only been a vegan for a short while. A girl mentioned how she’d been on a farm and heard the cows bellowing in pain! She was convinced. We simply have to milk cows. Nope!
Naturally, this doesn’t hold up at all. The good thing is that anyone can grasp this concept immediately. And Rachael did! Cows like all creatures I can think of only lactate when they are pregnant or feeding their young.
Cows are kept in a state of prolonged lactation because their bodies produce milk so long as the need is there. Sadly, their poor exhausted bodies cannot tell the difference between a calf and a milking machine, in terms of demand. It’s a disgrace that these poor animals are factory farmed.
Here’s my favourite cow video, surreal…
Nuisance vegans and the poor farmer
I do have some sympathy for farmers but they should switch over to organic crop farming and all would be well in the world. Unlikely, to say the least but the switch is one possibility. This sort of thing is often stated.
What would the farmers do for work if we all stopped eating meat. And where would all the farm animals go?
Well, for a start there’d be no instant switch from omnivore to vegan. So there’d be no immediate overpopulation of cattle and sheep. Of course, these animals are bred and produced for the meat industry. In this theoretical utopia the production would end and numbers would dwindle over time.
The farmers would have to adapt to the new markets that would emerge as people still need to be fed. In this country farmers have had to adapt their farming methods and the crops they produce for centuries. This would simply be another chapter in that history. Dumb argument, I’m afraid.
Have you got any other spurious arguments aimed at nuisance vegans that simply don’t hold up? There must be many more from over the years. Please share them in the comments and I’ll amend this post with the best. I thank you.