By Dylan H., Animal
Rights Coalition (ARC)
What really convinced me to make the change [to veganism] was a protester's sign that showed a severely injured dog about the size of my canine companion Yuma.
On November 4th of last year, at the prodding of a friend, I went to the ARC protest against the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science conference in Minneapolis.
I had never gone to an animal rights protest before, or even been involved in the community. However, the images I saw that day and the people I talked to had a profound effect on my life. That morning would end up being the last time I ate meat and weeks later, I would give up all animal products.
To many, it must seem odd that a protest against experimentation on animals could bring a person to veganism, but I honestly don't think that hearing many of the talking points about farmed animals would have worked on me. What really convinced me to make the change was a protester's sign that showed a severely injured dog about the size of my canine companion Yuma.
Yuma is my best friend, and the idea of her being tortured for her entire life and then disposed of after she was no longer useful was too much to bear. Seeing the pain of non-human animals similar to Yuma was what made me become vegan.
Coming from a background of academic work in dis-ability studies and feminism, I can now see the intersectional nature of veganism. I know that I wasn't the only non-vegan at the AALAS protest. Maybe I was the only one to become vegan after the protest, but I now believe it is of the utmost importance to continue protesting and educating about all forms of oppression of non-human animals, not just the most prevalent, as oppressions are not isolated; they are interlinked and cannot be solved alone.
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