In a time when we are growing as a movement but still desperately need more Vegan educators, what sense does it make to flame and rant at groups of -or individual- non-Vegans online, many of whom have never even thought about what they are doing wrong? If we treat people with respect, many of them will be only too happy to take what we say to heart.
Most Vegans, myself included, were not Vegan our entire lives. I understand many Vegans feel shame and horror for what they did prior to going Vegan, and many are angry when they see images and videos of slaughter and other atrocities. But spending your time looking at those things does nothing but make you feel anger, hatred, and all kinds of negative thoughts and emotions, which not only hurt you psychologically, but make your advocacy less effective.
It is said that one day the Buddha was walking through a village. A very angry and rude young man came up and began insulting him. “You have no right teaching others,” he shouted. “You are as stupid as everyone else. You are nothing but a fake!”
The Buddha was not upset by these insults. Instead he asked the young man, “Tell me, if you buy a gift for someone, and that person does not take it, to whom does the gift belong?” The young man was surprised to be asked such a strange question and answered, “It would belong to me, because I bought the gift.”
The Buddha smiled and said, “That is correct. And it is exactly the same with your anger. If you become angry with me and I do not get insulted, then the anger falls back on you. You are then the only one who becomes unhappy, not me. All you have done is hurt yourself.”
Nobody is saying you can’t challenge non-Vegans on their beliefs and actions, but to insult, degrade and curse at non-Vegans can never do anything productive. Not to mention, are you ok with insulting, degrading and cursing out all your non-Vegan relatives and friends?
People are not split into 2 different types, Vegans and then people who are not Vegan. All non-Vegans are people who have the potential to go Vegan, but just haven’t become aware of how wrong their actions are yet. Thinking that non-Vegans will never go Vegan is exactly what we don’t need. We might as well just kill everyone on the planet if that’s the case.
Please, PLEASE if you’re thinking about posting something angry online, think twice, and then don’t. If you have to be angry, keep it offline and do something positive with that anger, or at least something that won’t hurt anyone.
Remember, Veganism isn’t a social club or something. We’re doing this for the nonhuman animals and our fellow human animals. They both desperately need us to be calm, clear-headed and kind.
I was accused by this “friend” of loving the people who slaughter animals and commit atrocities against them. The thing is, it’s true. I do love everyone, even non-Vegans.
If you hate non-Vegans, all you get are new enemies.
If you love non-Vegans, what you get are new Vegans.
If you’re not already Vegan, and you think animals matter morally, then please go Vegan. It’s easy and great for you, incredible for the animals, and wonderful for the planet. If you’re already Vegan, please educate non-Vegans about why they should go Vegan. Please rescue, volunteer, adopt, foster, spay, and neuter the nonhuman refugees of domestication whenever you can. Please feed your nonhuman family Vegan where you can. These things are the most important, morally responsible things to do and are desperately needed by everyone.
To learn more about Abolitionist Veganism and the issues I’ve outlined in this post, check out The Master List Of Vegan Info:
Disclaimer: My only goal with this list is to produce as comprehensive a resource for Vegan information as possible. I am 100% Abolitionist Vegan and 100% against exploitation of nonhuman or human animals, any type of violence against human or nonhuman persons or property, welfare regulation, any form of speciesism, ethnic bigotry, genderism, ableism, heterosexism, etc., any of the large governmental or non-governmental nonhuman animal organizations, “happy meat,” vegetarianism, veg*nism, Meat-Free Mondays, or other forms of reductionism and anything else that makes it seem like any form of violence or exploitation of animals is ok. If any of those positions are endorsed on any site in this list, or any language is used to imply that, it’s not that I included that link because I agree, but simply because I don’t control every bit of information on all of these sites.