Six Common Objections to a Vegan Diet that Keep People from Making the Changes They Say They Want to Make
An Animal Rights Article from All-Creatures.org
By Robert Grillo, Free From Harm
In developing my new workshop series on Overcoming Objections to a Vegan
Diet, I am researching the most common objections out there. Here are six of
them with some short responses. More to come in the future.
Illustration courtesy of Bizzaro Comics
- Habit: “I’m a busy working mom who doesn’t have time to adapt to a whole
new way of feeding my family.”
Response: Once you get past the initial
learning curve, it will become second nature to you. It’s time to break the
“hand-me-down” habits we inherit, and replace them with habits aligned with
our values of respect for animals, the environment, and our own well-being.
- Direct Denial: “I don’t want to know.”
Response: Humans are natural
truth-seekers. We especially want to know when something is being concealed
from us — and why. The truth about eating animals is a classic Matrix
challenge. The message of the Matrix is that the truth can be initially
painful but is ultimately liberating. For a great perspective on this, see
social psychologist Melanie Joy’s presentation.
- Pseudo-ethical: “I only buy cage-free eggs.”
Response: Is cage-free anything
more than marketing hype? A closer examination of the life of cage-free hens
reveals suffering on many levels. Here’s a good overview of so-called
- Convenience: “I don’t see any non-animal-based options where I shop.”
Response: Look closer. The options are out there. If you learn more about
your true nutritional needs, you might discover that you can fulfill them
with what you already eat, minus the meat, dairy, and eggs, and with the
addition of a few plant proteins. Check out Norris and Messina’s wonderful
plant-based nutrition handbook, Vegan for Life, for answers to all of your
- Culture: “I come from a farming family where these foods are part of our
Response: Some traditions are better left in the
past. Tradition can and has been used to justify every atrocity done to our
own kind and to animals alike.
- Nature: “Animals eat other animals.”
Response: The animals you refer to are
carnivores, while humans are not. So it’s not a just comparison. Besides,
why compare ourselves to other animals only when it is convenient to do so?
According to this misguided logic, it’s okay to behave like nonhuman animals
when it serves to justify our ends. Instead, the power of our free will and
our humanity should determine our food choices.
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