I first understood what it meant to be vegan when i was 14. An Adventist preacher was advocating against eating meat and everything animal related.
I remember my parents' unbelief and their general unwillingness to convert to the vegan way of life. They love the taste of animal foods.
Generally, in our culture, ultimate veganism is uncommon as the average Nigerian is brought up to crave animal food.
A meal is not considered complete if meat, fish or egg is not included. In fact, you are considered poor if you do not use them in your food.
Growing up, i have heard a lot of arguments about eating meat or not.
Let me establish here that i am not vegan and i respect those who are. Afterall, it's a free world, everyone is entitled to their opinion and choices.
The argument here is not about the nutritional benefit of the vegan lifestyle. Rather, it's about the 'supposed' cruelty to animals that meat eaters are guilty of.
I would like to establish that whether you are a meat eater or not, directly or indirectly, you are part of animal 'cruelty'...that is if you would like to use that word(i don't like that word).
Yes, the meat, chicken, pork, mutton...whatever type of meat you eat, is on your plate because an animal's life has been sacrificed. And when you eat an egg, you have just consumed a potential chick!
Does being a vegan free you from the guilt of animal cruelty? The answer is NO.
The plant products consumed, how are they produced?
The fact is animals lose their habitats so crops can be planted. Sometimes, the forest is even burnt in the name of clearing land for planting crops.
What greater cruelty can be meted out to these animals than being burnt alive!
Think about it. When you consume food grown on that land you become equally guilty.
Also clearing of land for crop production leads to an animal's loss of habitat and when an animal loses its habitat, survival becomes hard.
Would you say you won't live in houses Because an animal could have been hurt in the course of its construction?
Would you say you won't use good quality leather products just because it is a product of animal 'cruelty'?
Food is a necessary part of life. The creator of the universe created animals as a part of our diet for a purpose which a plant only diet can't replace.
So dear reader, everyone in one way or the other contribute to animal cruelty whether you are a meat eater or not. I love the taste of meat and i don't think i can stop doing so.
And please take note, animal cruelty is not only about what you put in your mouth. It is way more than that.
image sourced from pixabay. com