DAY 260: MAD MEN AND UNCERTAIN VEGANS
It’s a strange journey…this year.
Almost everything that happens seems to have some bearing on my understanding of our relationship to animals. It’s as if I’m somehow infected.
You ever have that experience? You walk out of a gallery and everything looks like the pictures you just saw?
I’ve been watching MAD MEN and just as I am getting seduced by the sharp suits and copious alcohol I find myself believing its acceptable to smoke 60 a day and a good idea to denigrate women. I’m one of the boys!
And the point?
I’m reminded again how easy it is for a whole culture to be wrong about something that seems so morally normal. For denigrating women and for smoking cigarettes you might want to read dominating animals and eating meat.
It’s only been a little time since I stopped eating meat but I’m surprised at how easy the shift has been. I expected it to be a little like giving up smoking – you know its a good idea but its a pain in the arse. You really want another drag. I don’t at all because something in my gut has shifted.
I still eat some fish and I still eat dairy.
I’ve met more and more animal activists recently and I’ve sensed their uncertainty about me. They expect me to be vegan. Maybe they think I’m a lightweight.
In one sense they are right. If one wants to spend a year helping animals then why the hell would one eat animal products? It’s like punching someone with your left hand and offering them a plaster with your right.
But I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – I only want to make changes to my diet when I feel a total convinction in my gut. I accept the arguments for vegetarianism and veganism wholesale but I’m not ready yet .
How can this be?
Because there’s a difference between knowing something intellectually and really knowing something with your gut.
All smokers know that smoking will kill them. But they continue anyways. Others see a relative die of lung cancer or they get a chest infection and something shifts in their gut. They know the same fact but they know it deeper.
Equally we all know intellectually we could die any day. But how many of us live according to that knowledge.
This might explain why there are plenty of doctors who smoke and plenty of animal carers that eat meat.
I deeply respect those that are vegan. But I hope they can respect the fact that, at least for now, I am one of those many humans that is capable of having a head and a heart and a gut that are not totally in line.
That is the purpose of this journey – to bring myself into alignment. And I am not there yet.
I’m soon to be investigating farms where I want to see with my own eyes what goes into our food. That may change some things.