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16 Comments

  1. I’m sorry, but if your response to having your beliefs and morals challenged is to lash out and cling desperately to your cognitive dissonance, then yes I do look down on you. I know that’s not the way to change minds, that compassion and understanding is, but I simply don’t have patience for grown adults that act like bratty toddlers. Having hate against someone because they’re doing the right thing is just pathetic. You seem to have a much cooler and patient head on your shoulders than me, so more power to you and I hope you can continue to give level headed responses to antiveganism and convert some along the way.

  2. You could have a reason 4, some people are just ignorant. But reason 2 is HUGE!!!! If at every meal you hear a comment about maybe an egg or dairy choice, it’s annoying. Shaming people for something that they don’t feel like is shameful is enough to have the opposite effect. It’s important to let non-vegans to initiate the questions and if you shame them then they don’t want to talk to you.

    Also, vegan restaurants are usually terrible. Specifically when they try to replicate a meat dish, it almost never works. Vegetarian dishes never try this and can be quite delicious.

  3. I have no problem with the animal rights component as I volunteer for local shelters and rescues. I try to cut out as much as I can with my Mediterranean Diet. Also as a progressive liberal, getting into loud discussions at group functions is not a fear of mine.
    The only thing that gets annoying is trying to plan a cook out or large meal with vegans. Omg, you know your aunt is never going to understand mayo is not in your diet. Or someone is going to try to make a vegan dish and still make a mess of it. At least they are trying, don’t be a dick. Pick your battles at the picnic table. I have been lactose intolerant my whole life and I know I will have to just pick cheese out of things even though everyone “knows” about my restriction. C’est la vie.

  4. When I first went vegan, I was in my early 20s. I was naive. I posted a “why eat one animal but not the other” post on Facebook with a pic of a dog and a pig. Immediately, 2 of my old guy friends from highschool responded. One guy replied saying “I’ll eat another burger for everyone you don’t eat!” and the other liked that reply. I was so upset by this. I was in disbelief. I just assumed that if someone didn’t agree that they would just disregard my post or just not say anything.

  5. what a relief from the norm!i just discovered your blog and I was so happy to read an intelligent thoughtful article written from such a positive point of view.

    i try. i try so hard to fight the good fight, be a good steward to the earth. i know it is important to create a positive attitude towards veg life but it can be so hard. i’ve settled on just being a good example and doing my own thing. (like the mac and cheese in previous comments- well done!) the social price we pay is high.
    those who believe need to support each other and stay the course. your words are helpful!

    1. Hi Maggie, I feel you. It’s a challenge, especially when being vegan impacts every consumer choice. Setting an example through actions is always a safer bet, although I hope we can continue to have meaningful and open dialogue to move things forward.
      Thank you for your kind words, efforts and for taking the time to comment.

  6. I not sure it’s vegans they hate, it’s more that they feel us vegans think we better than meat eaters. But we know this is a lifestyle choice and do not judge others for not choosing the same path.

    I have loads of amazing friend that are not vegan or vegetarian, I wish they did not but would never push my views on them, as they do not put me down for my decision to be a vegan.

    But haters will always hate 🙁

    1. Good point, Julie. It goes back to the combination of do-gooder derogation and moral reproach that creates the perception of righteousness and ego. I, too, have many non-vegan friends and get along in harmony.

      Regardless of whether someone is vegan or not, I value people who are open and non-judgemental above all else. Thanks for sharing your experience.

  7. Hi Michael,
    Mate, you sure do the rounds-of-the-table with the variety of topics you put up for discussion. The latest is a cliff hanger – “Why are vegans hated?” Because the vegan movement gets right up and personal, often in the faces of meatatarians. We expose the hypocrisy shown by carnivores…”Aw honey, look at that lovely cute innocent lamb in the stall, how cuddly.” “Yeah, I’ll have it on my dinner plate tonight thank you very much.” Meateaters don’t like that we relish our status that we are the victims. With furrowed brows, they consider vegans are vociferous and annoying, holier-than-thou, self-satisfied and evangelical. In western society, vegans experience discrimination and bias on a par with other minor groups.These displays of enmity towards vegans represent a puzzling escalation in hostilities, just as a consensus is starting to form that eating less meat would almost certainly be better for everyone – and the planet. Of course on the flip side of the coin, vegans demonise meat, when and were possible. Add that conundrum to grocery store shelves stocking total plant based sausages, schnitzels, chicken nuggets and cheese, is it any wonder that carnivors are left fuming and scratching their heads. Even conglomerates like Nestle and Kellogg’s are moving into the plant based meat alternatives earning millions of dollars for their share holders. I honestly believe, (perhaps not in my lifetime) that consuming red meat will be placed in the same categary as tobacco smoking – a vice enjoyed by a number of people in full awareness of its negative health consequences. But as our numbers grow beyond being “the minority,” perhaps the worst thing we could hear from meateaters is that we were right.

    1. Hi Frank! Yup, I’m locked in a bunch of topics at the moment 🙂 Your articulated response adds incredible value to this conversation, so thank you. I align with your prediction, although I’m hopeful the shift will happen in your lifetime.

  8. Loved reading this. Some examples which occured to me:
    Once I told a friend of mine I’m vegan he immediately said “then what do you eat..hay?
    Another in my family. A nephew on knowing that I am vegan replied ‘I love your way and wish I could do it but cannot. But after all I am not a meat gobbler’ Another nephew tried veganism but gave up after a few months.

    A niece this time from another family. When they visited me few years back I made it a point of showing the miseries and cruelty of slaughtering animals for food. One fine day her mother called asking me to stop this when they visit cos back home the niece started crying on knowing the cruelty done. She threatened me to stop or else they quit visiting. BUT knowing this she wouldn’t turn vegan. Crocodile tears!!
    I do not hesitate showing I’m vegan whenever occassion arises. Couldn’t care less what people think of me. On the other hand some praise crops up once in a blue moon like ‘ I’ve never met an individual of your age 81 who is vegan’
    At hospital for a surgical intervention I tell them I am vegetarian cos the agency who supplies meals do not know what vegan means. But they oblige. They supply me with vegetarian dish. I leave uneaten non vegan.

    1. Hi Joe, reading about your experiences struck me, especially when dealing with family as a vegan. It can be a touchy point.

      It’s surprising that hospitals don’t have dedicated vegan options. I suppose it depends on the location and hospital. Thanks for sharing.

  9. As with everything else, especially in the U.S. where I live, meat-eaters believe we are going to take things away from them. They look at us as being very evil people, they won’t even read about Veganism nor are they willing to believe in compassion for all sentient beings.
    I “teach” in a very subtle manner … For instance, when I go to a potluck I usually bring a large and deep pan of my much loved Mac ‘n’ Cheese, and I also bring copies of the recipe. People ask who made it, I confess, then they ask me what kinds of cheese I used in the sauce. My reply, as always – “It’s all plant-based”. They won’t believe me, so I hand them a copy of the recipe. This is how I believe carnivores and omnivores learn about Vegan cooking/ Veganism in a kind way. People don’t need to be hit on the head, they just need to be able to ask questions and talk about Veganism with someone who’s patient and thoughtful.

    1. Hi Carol, I love your approach to leading through food experiences. You must make an incredible Mac ‘n’ Cheese to garner such a response from non-vegans. Well done! There’s much to learn from your example. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Great article. Being a vegan in an omnivorous world, I’ve realized pretty quickly that answering questions about my diet is best left vague unless discussing with friends, family, or other vegans. I try to say “just a personal choice,” or “seems to really work for my lifestyle.” If I were to call attention to concerns most vegans have like cruelty or environmental concerns, it can be misconstrued as “you’re not concerned if you’re not living like me.” There is no way passive enough to discuss it. Sorry for the long comment. Loved your article.

    1. I resonate with this so much. I’m glad you’ve managed to save yourself some trouble. It’s even more awkward when you try to be vague, and people dig for clarity, leading to the same frictional outcome. Thanks for sharing!