You can look at the comments on pretty much any animal rights–related post on any social media platform and find a battle in which nonvegans accuse vegans of being “extreme,” having a “superiority complex,” or “pushing their beliefs on others.”
It’s an interesting debate, for sure—but it’s been going on long enough, sooo we’re just gonna go ahead and shut it down.
Being Vegan Is the Opposite of Extreme
Does it sound more extreme to pull carrots out of the ground OR to breed billions of animals, confine them to tiny crates and cages inside filthy warehouses, truck them to slaughterhouses, and suspend them upside down before cutting their throats to kill them?
If you say, “carrots,” I’ll know you’re lying. Plants don’t have central nervous systems—and even if you were concerned about the welfare of plants, you’d want to eat vegan anyway because way more plants are required to feed animals raised to be eaten than to feed humans directly.
You might find it ‘radical’ that many vegans don’t just want less suffering—they want no suffering. But you’d probably agree if it were you trapped in a dark shed your whole life until you were sent to the slaughterhouse.
Being Vegan Is the Opposite of Having a Superiority Complex
Eating animals essentially implies that the 30 minutes that it takes someone to enjoy a meal justifies condemning another sensitive being to hell on Earth and subjecting them to a violent, painful, and bloody death—multiple times a day.
Using cosmetics and other products that were tested on animals; eating animal “products”; wearing leather, wool, fur, or feathers; and using animals for entertainment all stem from the belief that nonhumans are inferior to humans and are here for us to exploit however we see fit.
Vegans don’t think they’re superior, which is exactly why they choose not to condemn animals to miserable lives and painful deaths for their own perceived benefit.
Vegans Don’t Push Our Beliefs
When nonvegans act on the belief that animals are here for us to use, they push suffering and death onto other beings. Vegans speak the truth: that animals are tortured and killed on farms and in slaughterhouses. Which do you find more “pushy”?
Eating animals isn’t a personal choice, because there are victims involved. If you like someone’s jeans, that doesn’t mean you can steal them. If you’re lazy, that doesn’t mean you can enslave someone. If you want to have sex with someone, that doesn’t mean you can rape them. And if you like meat, that doesn’t mean you can kill someone—just eat the vegan versions instead.
The exploitation of animals is pushed on us constantly—practically every time we drive on a road with billboards, go to a venue, open an e-mail promo, see or a hear a commercial, scroll through Instagram, read a magazine, shop for clothing, research things to do on a trip, read a book, or watch a movie. Vegans don’t see only a billboard with a burger on it. We see the sad individuals who’ve been mutilated, charred, and wedged between two pieces of bread—meaning that we’re constantly reminded of just how ingrained in society animal abuse is.
In a world where torturing and killing animals is normalized and speaking up for them is often considered offensive, it can be tricky to effectively spread the message of compassion for all.
Nonvegans, instead of accusing vegans of pushing their beliefs on you, ask yourself what your beliefs actually are … because you probably don’t like animal abuse, either—and nothing kind happens to animals in slaughterhouses.
And vegans, let’s try to find common ground and call people in instead of calling them out.