August 23, 2018

BARAN | Honestly: Veganism, Schmeganism

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I’m a member of the conservative right, and I pride myself on tradition. I’m old-fashioned, and I’m not afraid to say it. Faith, freedom and family all the way, baby! My core values are hard work and grit, and I think today’s society is too soft. People need to toughen up, stay on the straight and narrow, and then they can dig themselves out of any rut they find themselves in. This little preamble brings me to my talking point for today’s column: veganism. As is probably evident, I’m a pretty tough guy, and I brook no truck with vegans. They’re just too soft.

Honestly, that’s my main problem with them, although there are ancillary reasons for my dislike, about which I will talk a little later. Their empathy for animal suffering and the environment is sickening. Buck up, will ya? Can you not be so gentle and wimpy? The men, at least, should heed these words. It’s unmasculine to not eat meat, so if you want to be a real man, just fry up that T- bone! As for the women, your concerns are a little ridiculous. Humans are superior to animals, and we’ve dominated the environment for a reason. We’re more intelligent than animals, and as such have an inalienable right to exploit them. Besides, if we didn’t eat animals like cows and pigs, they would go extinct. So if you think about it, I’m actually doing animals a favor by taking my steak and eggs with a side of bacon every morning. And the extra water, land and resources required to produce meat are negligible. Each bite of a juicy bacon burger makes that little extra input so worth it.

I can’t believe I even have to address this one, but for the sake of a cohesive and comprehensive argument, I will. We. Were. Made. To. Eat. Meat. We are omnivorous creatures, which denotes a diet consisting of meat and plants. What do you think our canines are for? I don’t see herbivorous creatures like cows and deer walking around with four healthy-sized cuspids in their mouths. It confounds me when I think how vegans could have overlooked such an obvious flaw in their argument. We’re adapted to eat meat, so we have to eat meat. Biology dictates it.

Biology dictates some other stuff too. For one, nature decrees that some animals must eat other animals. Carnivorous lions and omnivorous raccoons (just like us!) alike eat the flesh of their animal ilk. If vegans are so sensitive to animals, they should be aware of this and realize that their dietary habits give us the moral prerogative to eat meat alongside of them.

I feel as though inconvenience and gratuitous change are inherent tenets of veganism. Why change? Things are good as they are now. For a person like me, a paradigm change of the sort vegans are trying to affect is apprehensible. I long for the good old days, when people would never give battery cages or a little smoke break at work a second thought. Nowadays, liberals in general are making things too complicated. Veganism is just one example, but it truly is the epitomizer of painful change. Don’t make extra work for us at dinner parties. Just eat the shrimp cocktail and hors d’oeuvres. Don’t make your loved ones feel the shame of buying veggie patties instead of honest-to-goodness animal flesh at the supermarket. Meat is delicious! Any vegan who says a salad tastes better than a filet mignon is a liar. It’s convenient; it’s tasty; eat the meat! As you hippies are so apt to say, just go with the flow!

By going with the societal flow, you will have the added bonus of avoiding the nutrient and vitamin deficiencies so common in vegans. It’s a known fact that while a vegetarian diet has the saving grace of at least being healthy, a vegan diet is detrimental to the health of the person adhering to it. This is such an obvious fault in veganism that I feel obliged to mention it every time I meet a vegan. I unerringly inquire, “Where do you get your protein? You must not get enough.” I think they appreciate a chance to consider, for what I’m assuming is their first time, from where they get their protein.

Am I just another ignorant, provincial traditionalist spouting off about things I don’t understand? Obviously not. I’m an educated and articulate person, as is evidenced by my writing. Seeing that, you should probably take me seriously, because, unlike many hardline conservatives these days, I know what I’m talking about and I have a well-thought-out argument. My intelligence and eloquence precludes you from dismissing me.

Remember, guys, I’m white, male and insulting you, so you can’t ignore me.

Christian Baran is a freshman in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. He can be reached at cbaran@cornellsun.com. Honestly runs every other Friday this semester.