Once upon a time, I was a little girl who loved eating meat. I loved it so much, I even made fun of my vegetarian cousin for not eating the big ol’ dead centerpiece on Thanksgiving. I was the worst kind of hypocrite—the one who played with her dog 24/7 and claimed to LOVE animals, but then sat down to eat them like nobody’s business.
The truth is, most of us ate meat at some point in our lives—and we need to remember that and use our mistakes to relate to others who are still eating animals.
We’ve all heard them … “But what would happen to all of the cows if we didn’t eat them?!” and “What about all of the starving CHILDREN?!” These questions seem D-U-M-B to us now, but guess what? There was a time when we didn’t know the answers either, so when someone asks you where you get your protein from, tell them—without any arm folding, eye rolling, or laughing, got it?
Every animal rights activist’s goal should be to get people to ask questions. So these “dumb” questions are actually little victories for us, because your friends, family, and your classmates are actually being forced to think about something other than their significant others, Twilight, or how much they hate their homework. Our battle is the battle to get people to consider animals, and when people ask you questions, that’s just what they’re doing—so give everyone polite, relatable, accurate answers, every time. People aren’t asking you these questions to be annoying, they’re asking you because you sparked a little light in their head (win!), and because they simply don’t know any better—remember, we’re taught that eating animals is healthy, normal, and that animals on factory farms live lovely lives before they end up on the plate.
Arguing and coming off like a jerk when you’re answering questions won’t help any animals. In fact, it will turn people off from ever asking you another question, and the animals will be left voiceless. Do everyone a favor and don’t be a jerk!