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Sanctimonious vegan snobbery undermines the ethos of the cause

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The Vegan Society defines veganism as ‘a way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose’.
Being vegan does not make you a good person. Yet there is a distinct air of superiority exuded by some vegans which is actually harming their public image.
I am not better than anyone else because I have become a vegan. I am just a better me than I was before.

I don’t want to indoctrinate or force others to change their lifestyle but I do believe that we have a moral responsibility to educate ourselves about the world we live in and that includes the processes involved in food production.
Vegans would agree that current plant crop production methods are far from ideal but it is a start. Working together is the only way to improve the living standards of animals yet some vegans turn on others to highlight their own ‘superiority’.
Today I was described as an ‘idiot’ on a vegan Facebook group for having tried the McDonalds vegan wrap (obviously I didn’t eat the tortilla due to my wheat allergy). I simply wanted to eat with my family!

Snobbery and a rejection of brands based on their past record will not improve their future stance. Raising awareness and conducted unified political action is the only way that change will occur.
Just look at the feminist fight. There was only success when the right of their argument became evident to the masses. Equality between the sexes is still not achieved but it is a heck of a lot better than 50 years ago!
Even vegetarians are ostracised by some vegans for not being committed enough. This is wrong: they are doing what for them is possible and practicable as described above. 20 years ago when I became a vegetarian, I had to battle with my mum who refused to cater for me (I can see her point, having cooked 5 separate meals on Saturday!) then I was hit with my wheat allergy diagnosis and had a massive adjustment to cope with. Now I am confident and ready to go further but for those 20 years I have still made a difference to animal welfare.
The introduction of vegan options on the high street normalises veganism and paves the way to a future where animals are treated with respect. It makes children see veganism as a non-limiting lifestyle and one that they can replicate. It allows discussion to take place and then education so that our future generations can make informed choices and make the world a better place.
Humans are animals too. Cruelty free should apply to us as well so being insulting goes right against the very core of the vegan philosophy. Be kind.

 

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11 comments

  1. I love your opening to this post, because I agree that it doesn’t make people a good person, but it does make them a better person than before. I love that there are more options now and that restaurants are catering for vegans and vegetarians so much more than they used to, I hope this continues and eventually we can phase out the use of animal products. I think the hardest thing to make people understand is that all this information we are fed in regards to our bodies needing meat, or cows milk in order to be healthy comes from the meat and dairy companies themselves and all the money they have. They have done well to manipulate people. Great post! #StayClassyMama

  2. Sam

    I think it is important to treat people as you would like to be treated l. I accept peopke are different and that becuase that is ok to be as they have that right and vice versa. There are some lovely vegans that are not got nasty streak luckily though some vegans I questiom them as a person X #stayclassymama

  3. I think it’s so good that you’ve highlighted this. And as a vegan yourself, you have the experience and knowledge. I’m not OK with people judging others no matter what. To me, it doesn;t matter whether you’re vegetarian, vegan or a meat-eater. Just be nice x #stayclassymama

  4. I couldn’t agree with you more!! I am vegetarian, have been my whole life (literally my whole life, my parents were so I am), I have never once felt the need to preach to others or try to convert them to my way of thinking. That being said I have no real moral reasoning behind my diet, I genuinely just don’t like the taste of meat (or the smell, or anything else really!) But you will see a lot of people get very sanctimonious about it and that doesn’t help, it only creates a divide. #StayClassyMama

  5. Pingback: #Project365 week 2 | loopyloulaura

  6. absolutely. Everyone should make lifestyle and dietry choices that they feel are appropriate to them , their health and their values. It doesn’t make them better or worse than anyone with a different diet or lifestyle. There is also nothing wrong with discussing and raising awareness of animal welfare. In the same way there is nothing wrong with anyone raising awaremness of the problems of any type of intensive farming be it animal or plant based and the damage none diversification can do. Take palm oil for examply. I think life is so complex these days we are all trying to take on board a more ecologically sound lifestyle and I think raisnig children helps us be more aware of our affect on the planet and what we will leave behind…. be it single use plastics, sdaving the forests, , animal extinctions, pollution or intensive farming (and so on and so on) we each have to manage our life and our battles the best we can. I have vegan friends but I have also beenon the receiving end of the ‘sanctamonious vegan’ from time to time… and you are right, it doesn’t do the cause any favours! #blogcrushj

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  8. Amen to that! I’ve been vegetarian for 27 years and currently have no interest in switching to being vegan. I actually don’t eat dairy apart from cheese, so I’m not far off vegan anyway.
    People are free to choose what they eat and shouldn’t judge others for it. And if McDonalds has become inclusive for vegans, then that’s fantastic! If other vegans don’t want to go there, that’s fine.

  9. This is a very insightful statement – “Humans are animals too. Cruelty free should apply to us as well”. I think it’s true that too many people take the moral high ground and think that everyone should make the same life choices as them. It happens with people who subscribe to a certain diet (like veganism), it happens with people who subscribe to a particular parenting style (like gentle parenting), it happens with people who choose not to drink alchohol, etc.

    But I love the stance you take in this post – we do have a responsibility to research our choices, but we also need to accept that the right choice for us is not necessarily the right choice for somebody else. We are all leading different lives and have different limits. Let’s focus on the positive changes that are happening and work together to make the world a better place.

    And massive congratulations because someone chose this post as the best one they’ve read all week! As such, they added it to the BlogCrush linky for you. Hurray! Feel free to bob over and collect your “I’ve been featured” blog badge #blogcrush

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