Category Archives: Essays

Speciesism

A previous post was somewhat along the same vein (Smoking and Meat–What a Vegan Said and What I Say). It is because I want to give the counter-vegetarian perspective from someone who didn’t (in this order) (1) always eat meat/not really think twice or care, (2) go Paleo, and (3) use Paleo as a justification for hating on vegetarians after reading Lierre Keith, who is really writing to vegetarians, not trying to get current omnivores (or carnivores) to justify their practices.

Vegetarians are noble people. Let me first say this: I respect and admire vegetarians. I used to be one for years. I know that it is a heart-centric lifestyle in its intentions. I understand them. The problem lies when new information you come to know may change your approach to compassion, convictions, and spirituality-as it did for me. Sometimes you come to a crossroads where you can practice cognitive dissonance so that you can fit in with your vegetarian friends/avoid them judging you, or you can follow the direction your heart is taking you after the study of new information coupled with a gut reaction. The information may be given to you or made available to you–if you do not take it, digest it, and come out anew with a new (or renewed belief) I do not believe that you are practicing right compassion in the strictest sense. This goes for everything.

Speciesism.

“Humans and animals are equal and sentient. They are on equal moral ground. Killing animals and taking life infringes on that moral ground.”

Life feeds on life.This took me a long time to accept.

The idea of speciesism that Peter Singer, a great vegetarian thinker and philosopher, introduced us with is the basis of how I used to think, and ironically continue to think, except for one big part. People. Continue reading

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Chipotle deserves some credit

I know I was guilty of it. I was letting the perfect be the enemy of the good. When Chipotle came out with its “Food with Integrity,” campaign/commitment, I have to admit that I was really skeptical. “It’s not enough.” I said. Being the annoying perfectionist that I can be. And I continued to rarely eat out anywhere. In other words, I put as much money into Chipotle as I put into Taco Bell: zero (essentially; this is definitely true for Taco Bell). Then one came to the town I currently live in; and it tore up the streets. People were out the door every single day for the entire first month that it was open. It was literal insanity. People camped overnight before it opened to get a taste of their food. Continue reading

Being Gay and Being Christian at the Same Time

“…is it possible?” This seems to be the question that goes along with being a homosexual and being a Christian. This question confuses me. Because, to me, this question reads, “Do I exist? Do I love even though I love and live with someone of the same sex?”

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Oppression, Other nations, Our food

children? think again, fight back”]There is so much oppression and control in the world. It is overwhelming. What would happen if it just stopped? Would there be anarchy and chaos as the leaders think to justify their actions? Or would there actually be quiet peace?

 

I don’t know what my thoughts are on this. What I do know:

Four people died in Bahrain today peacefully protesting against the government by police controlling the crowds. They were trying to “teach them a lesson” after the media left.

The government in Cuba can control things as small how how much sugar a Cuban can buy and how much that sugar costs.

The US isn’t free of it. Our food system is one of the best examples. Continue reading

Vegetarians and Paleos: Part 1, Veg to Evolutionary

vegetarianism led to my discovery of the eggplant

When I was 17, I became a vegetarian. In the strictest sense of the term, I was a lacto-ovo vegetarian. I ate dairy products and I ate eggs. I did not eat seafood, and I did not consume any stocks (i.e. chicken stock) or derivatives from animals like beans with pork fat.

I started being a vegetarian after learning about industrial meat, egg, and dairy operations a.k.a. factory farming (for a quick overview, watch The Meatrix for an entertaining [yet tilted] view or read a more official view). My reasons were purely unselfish. I no longer wanted to contribute to this system, no matter what the cost. Unfortunately, I think it did have some minor health costs. Thankfully I eventually got my act together.

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Zach Wahls and I

Some things pass us by and don’t change our lives at all. For people like Zach Wahls and myself, some of these “things” have a large effect on us. Zach and I have to live with labels that we did not choose in exchange for our happiness.

Sometimes I pray that things will change, other times I don’t feel as if I need to because I feel the sand shifting and changing underneath of my bare feet.

I dream of a day when there will be no secrets, no calculations of the worth of mentioning a certain pronoun when referring to one’s significant other. I dream of a day that there will be no worry with regards to choice of language in order to avoid divulging something that one is told by so many to be ashamed of. That day is so sweet that I literally taste it like raw honey on the tip of my tongue and it makes me smile outwardly. It has a special place that it resides in my mind in all of its glory and wonder–a place that I can retreat to and take refuge in when this world does not offer the same comforts.

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Burnout; NO

Burning rings of something unrelated to activism but pretty nonetheless

When I was a student activist, “burnout” was a very common term. What it means, in a nutshell, is that when a person puts their heart and soul into something (say an event) and it utterly consumes them as to where they have nothing left of them after that something as either come to fruition, expired, or they give up on that something for sheer lack of energy. Those of you lucky enough to have received an education may know what I mean, especially if it was a demanding college education. You toiled for months and months to make those A’s and B’s and, when winter rolls around, you bring home a sack of laundry to Mom just to climb into your warm old bed to go to sleep…and then you didn’t wake up for three whole days. After that three day period you would probably throw up if someone told you to write another paper.

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