“The vegan’s preoccupation with morality is shoddy, vague and often graceless in quest of a fulfilling life. Hedonism without parenthood has not been redefined by a bourgeois liberal community so much as has a new and younger breed, but one still looking for an ungraceless place to live.” — Melvyn Bragg, about vegetarians in “The Street” [pg. 425]
What’s the alternative to consuming meat? Vegetarianism or (perhaps more fitting for me) Veganism?
For years I’ve found that choosing and sustaining a Diet that is nutritionally rich, that offers lifestyle benefits and environmental impacts compatible with close environmental sustainability is one of the best forms of social justice activism. That means taking the actions that make sense for me, for me and the neighborhood of where I live (and whatever makes my back garden even better). And no, it isn’t along the “meat production lines” of Dubai. And finally, it is not a lifestyle choice; it is a desired, albeit less loving, healthful option.
Human beings must consider taking great care in choosing our foods, how we feed ourselves and our planet. To do so in a thoughtful, responsible way. And to fully consider the many diets, supplements and methods available for improving the nutritional benefits of eating something other than meat. That’s why I am so moved to hear a recent New York Times article that notes studies (some very recent, more recent studies) have found no negative health consequences for vegans (I use the word lightly and I don’t think “veganism” is intended as an insult). It’s great news about the world’s future and even better to be informed about how to make the change to sustainable and well-rounded eating habits!
I also appreciate the disturbing essay by Melvyn Bragg. I was brought up on “hiding in plain sight” not only from the haughty pastoral academics but also from the violent violence of world war I. I’ve spent countless hours being taught about the joys of responsible, simple, well-done, meatless meat.
This writer, veterinarian, social worker, and long-time family and community leader offers professional, agricultural, academic, and charitable experience. Professor Bragg has taught and written extensively about the benefits of healthy and balanced lifestyles.
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