Pot vs. Kettle

38 thoughts on “Pot vs. Kettle”

  1. Heck yeah! Truth, truth, TRUTH! I can’t tell you how many times I have dealt with defensive omnivores. I know some of the things I say come off as harsh, arrogant, and judgmental. I have been brought to tears because I see some lady forcing her kids to drink cow milk and meat (even when kids are visibly protesting). I hate animal cruelty with the fire of 10,000 suns! I wish that the majority would see we are NOT the enemy. You wanna know who our enemies are? The evil dairy, meat and egg industries. I want to see them shut down forever. I don’t want to lose friends. I don’t want my family to shun me.

    1. Thank you Manta Raygun! I love your passion!

      I want to see those industries shut down forever as well. The more we make ourselves known and are “out” about our veganism, demonstrate how easy it is to be vegan, and educate people without name-calling or blaming, the easier it will be to make this dream a reality.

      I have lost many “friends” since going vegan, but my true friends stayed. If your friends can’t accept you being a vegan then they were never really your friends to begin with.

      1. Who would have any reason whatsoever to put a thumbs down to your comment above, VR? LOL This is why we get frustrated. People just hating to hate; without having a clue as to why we are so passionate about it.

  2. Kara, you have once again displayed in your post a disciplined mind,a commendable articulation of ideas, and penchant for linear thinking mixed with the passion and purpose of a hardcore activist. When you summarized this post to me the other day I wasn’t quite sure where you were going with it but I should not have doubted that you would bring it on home. And now, if I may, some thoughts on the various sections:

    1. “Vegans are judgmental” : I think what is crucial here is that both sides stay away from making “judgements,” which tend to insinuate a position of moral superiority. We vegans are perfectly within our rights to confront carnists with, as you say, the torture and murder they support by their actions of eating meat and animal products. Especially people who see themselves as kind and claim to animal lovers must be held accountable for the inconsistencies of their actions vs. their professed compassion. They must be led, however, to see these inconsistencies, and then come to their own conclusions. We vegans should not judge but rather lead.

    2. “Vegans are self-righteous and preachy”: You say, “If you’re coming from a religious standpoint (and you may not fully grasp the concept of the golden rule, which every religion has some sort of variation of), you reason that animals were given to us to use as we please; that their entire purpose — their entire reason for existing — is to be used and exploited by us for our gain. How is this not being self-righteous?” I’m not so sure if that fits the definition of “self righteous” that you have. But your point is well taken regarding speciesism and the sense of superiority it imparts. My sisters are deeply religious Christians but I would not call them “smugly moralistic;” however, their view of the Bible allows them to see animals as created for man. They feel that those who abuse animals are not sufficiently imbued with the “spirit of the Lord” but they still believe that consuming animals is okay and are blind to the systemic abuse that is part and parcel of modern animal agriculture.

    3, 4, and 5. “Annoying, Weird, Disrespectful”– right on, sister! I couldn’t have said it better myself!

    6 & 7. “Militant and Extreme” Great points made. I do not think of myself as militant, but I don’t mind being called radical [< Lat. radix, root] 1. fundamental, basic. 2. Departing markedly from the usual; extreme. 3. Advocating fundamental or revolutionary changes.

    9. "Naive and Idealistic" –"What strikes me as being truly naïve is overly trusting the false notion that everything the meat, dairy, and egg industries tell you is true." Love it!

    What you say in conclusion is crucial. Especially the paragraph that begins: "I am NOT saying to be submissive or moderate. If we really care about animal rights, then we must use whichever strategy helps animals the most, even if it is not as easy to do." Not too long ago I was given a great compliment by a co-worker. I had pushed for vegan Thai food at a staff dinner and while everyone was thoroughly enjoying the food, the conversation turned to my veganism and I was happy to answer questions and proudly state why I was vegan. My fellow teacher later told me that she admired the fact that I was so up front and assertive in my veganism and yet not aggressive about it. We must always be aware of our strategies and tactics and know whether they are, indeed, helping the animals. That is the bottom line.

    Thank you, Kara, for all that you do to change people's minds and open their hearts. Onward!

    1. Thank you, Robb! This comment made me smile. I love your breakdown of each point (except #10 is curiously missing lol). I love what you say about being assertive but not aggressive. People respond much better to that approach than one that is antagonizing. There is a time for yelling and screaming (for instance, during a demo in front of a vivisection lab), but when we are with regular people (friends, family, etc) we need to consider the way we are making ourselves and our movement as a whole look to those we are trying to educate. As soon as we start blaming, their wall goes up, and anything else we say is not going to get through. Of course, we can’t paint a rosy picture of something that is quite the opposite; the facts are what they are. However, we can choose to deliver this message in an informative, yet non-threatening way.

      1. I was feeling a little overly sensitive about the fact that I didn’t quite understand #10 and decided not to comment — but now of course you have to go and bring it up and, gee, why’d you have to go and do that, huh? I mean I really take offense at that!

        1. Wow I just got your joke LOL. It seriously took me THIS long hahaha. My brain needs a rest. Too much study, not enough sleepy. Good thing training is over on Friday, which is also the same day as our Vegan Outreach demo!

            1. LMAO…that was funny. I got it right away and then was confused when she told you to read it again. hahaha Yes, sleep is a good thing. I misread things like that all the time. This article was magnificent. I loved every bit of it. But I have to say, I was about to make a joke about being overly sensitive. Thanks for stealing my thunder, you two. 😉

  3. You leave no stone unturned, VR.

    I enjoyed reading about every ancient relic that you resurrected in your dig through the rubble of outworn accusations directed at vegans.

    I guess we are maddeningly coherent, consistent, and courageous in the eyes of those who secretly wish they dared to be bold like we are. Bold in leaving behind traditions taught to us in our youth. Bold in waving goodbye to social conformity. Bold in rejecting “the taste of flesh” as a justification for continuing a long-time, pleasurable, even addictive, habit.

    Yes, I’m sure our accusers long to be like us. Why? Because we’re not weighed down by guilt, by self-justification, by the suffering that accompanies doing wrong to others out of either ignorance or arrogance. And hopefully we’re not falling into the trap of self-righteousness; rather, we’re heeding your warning “to the vegans.”

    R.C., your reference to your two Christian siblings reminds me that CreatureQuotes.com is chockful of quotes from theologians and clergy and lay people who have left behind the conventional wisdom of their respective religions regarding the purpose and place of animals. If you’d like me to list some chapters/pages where these quotes appear so you can share them with your sisters, just holler.

    1. It is interesting, John that you felt compelled to make such a comment, so devoid of intelligence, so puerile — and yet so revealing. I would hazard a guess that you are a young man and one who is feeling quite defensive and in need of asserting his threatened maleness when faced with intelligent arguments in favor of veganism, especially ones espoused by an intelligent and articulate young woman. But thank you, all the same, as you have just helped Vegan Rabbit prove her case — just one question, what sort of “pot” shall you be??

    2. *sigh* (smh) Oh john, you poor little thing. Isn’t it past your bedtime?

      1. Calling someone a “pussy” is sexist. “Pussy” is a common slang-term for a woman’s genitalia, as I’m sure you know. By using that term you are basically saying that you think all women are weak, inferior, and cowardly (this is the common meaning of the slang term you used) and relating these views about women to your views about vegans. I’m afraid that you are doing exactly what Robb said, and are proving me right. You are the pot and we are the kettle. You are only seeing your own weak, inferior, and cowardly reflection in our shiny exterior.

      Or is it women’s genitalia that bothers you?

      2. Meat may be delicious, but it is certainly not healthy. If you actually knew what you were talking about (or actually bothered to read any of my posts) you would already know this. Vegan food is delicious as well, and it doesn’t necessitate the death of a living, feeling creature. The only reason I could think of for why my diet would offend you is that you feel threatened by my choice to not consume animal products. You feel threatened because you are insecure about something in your life. Based on your sophomoric insult I would be willing to guess that these insecurities have something to do with your uncomfortability with your sexuality and/or the way other people view your masculinity. If you really felt comfortable with your choice to eat animal products and your reasons for doing so, you would not feel the need to justify these things on my AR/vegan blog.

      3. You don’t need to be an animal lover to be vegan. Loving yourself is a good reason to go vegan, as veganism will enable you to live a long and healthy life. If you don’t love yourself then you clearly have bigger issues to worry about than people abstaining from animal products.

      Of course, if you’re in need of a friend (and quite frankly, it seems that way), we’re here for you. We understand that you’re going through something right now and just need a place to vent your frustration. So what do you say, let’s be friends?

      1. You’d better believe that Ms. Kapelnikova is neither weak, nor inferior, nor cowardly. But perhaps friend John was calling us “guys” pussy cats and recognized that as felines we are obligate carnivores?? Well damn it, even though I have a tendency to nap most of the day, play with yarn and shamelessly give myself tongue baths all over my furry body, I have willed myself to become an obligate herbivore. But I still have a habit of hocking up hair balls!

  4. Such a great post! Thanks for this! Definitely makes me connected to a wider vegan community and it’s so good to know that I’m not the only one who feels some of these things!

  5. Hi! Just wanted to let you know that my partner mentioned this post in a write up she did for a food blog called Zomppa. You should check it out! It’s titled “De Constructed Vegan”!

    1. That’s great! I’m very flattered ;D Do you have a link to it? I can’t seem to find it anywhere on zomppa.com by searching “De Constructed Vegan”, “De Constructed Vegan pot vs. kettle”, “De Constructed Vegan Vegan Rabbit”, or any variation thereof. I would really like to read it!

  6. Frankly, your standard meat eater really doesn’t really care what vegans eat. Yet your standard meat eater thinks that some vegans are, in fact, judgmental, self-righteous, et cetera. So why do you think that’s the case? Do you think that they just came up with the idea from nowhere, like the immaculate opinion? Or do you think it might have been caused by something. Like, maybe, perhaps, thrusting your opinions at ill advised times? Is it sheer stupidy on the part of meat-eaters, or is there perhaps a reason?

    Find a dictionary and get the definitions. They look through the posts on websites like this. If you cannot find some good examples (except for my post of course), then I can comfortably say that you might be a bit blinded on the issue.

    Go on a Bill O’Reilly-esque vegan rant. You’ll accomplish two things: You’ll get a thumbs up on this website and you’ll manage to alienate people who were relatively neutral on the matter. Plain and simple.

    1. Hello there Roberto. Thank you for taking the time to comment on my blog.

      I feel that I must inform you that if you would have read (or understood) my post, you would already know that what I wrote in this post is in agreement with what you are saying. I’m guessing that you read about half of it and never bothered to read the very end, where I make it very clear to vegans that we should not do any of those things either because we don’t like it when those things are done to us. To make it easier for you, I’ll just quote a piece of that section:

      “Fighting fire with fire is not solving anything. By attacking non-vegans with blaming and name-calling we are accomplishing two things:

      1) casting all vegans in a negative light (do you want their image of a vegan to be the one of you yelling and screaming about how they are a murderer?)
      2) putting them on the defensive so they are sure not to listen or consider anything you are saying because they are too busy defending themselves”

      My non-vegan friends who saw this post have told me that they loved it because it isn’t just bashing non-vegans — it is about how both vegans and non-vegans are equally at fault when it comes to these kinds of bahaviors. Also, just because we are equally at fault, doesn’t mean that we should allow this behavior to continue. Two wrongs don’t make a right.

      So depending how you want to look at it (unfortunately or fortunately), you ended up spending however long writing a comment in disagreement with what you thought I said, but wound up agreeing with me anyway. Thank you for that.

      PS: Of course the standard meat eater doesn’t care what vegans eat. What we eat doesn’t offend anyone. There is relatively much less harm to animals, our own health, and the environment. Who is offended by that? Also, meat eaters eat plants as well, so being offended by someone who eats what they do minus some other things (animal products) is silly. Plain and simple.

    2. “…you’ll manage to alienate people who were relatively neutral on the matter.”

      If people are alienated, it’s because they WANT to be alienated. People who are relatively neutral wouldn’t be alienated by that blog nor by a response to the comment above by Roberto. (If people are trying to control responses, then they just shouldn’t comment at all.) And if you think the ‘fear’ of alienating people scares us into whatever submission you were hoping for, then you don’t know vegans very well, nor anyone who fights for something that is way beyond the tiny world of your taste buds and traditions.

      Why not spend your time doing some research on it instead of making inane comments? Let’s face it; your opinion is just your opinion. Do you have some proof of something to show that veganism is not directly related to turning diseases around, making people healthier, helping the environment, and treating all beings as though they have a right to live on this planet? Everything we talk about can be proved. Everything we get thrown back at us, is opinion; nothing more.

      Is there some proof you have to show that factory farmed animals (90+ percent of animals consumed on this earth) are living under great conditions and they are healthy for human consumption? Is there some research we have missed out on that proves that animal consumption does NOT contribute to many of the diseases people have today? Is the environment better due to the tremendous amount of strain put on it by the meat/dairy/big ag industries? They only survive due to supply and demand, which makes everyone consuming animals complicit in the destruction of our environment. OUR environment; not just yours. This is what gives us the right to speak about it in a very loud voice.

      We can certainly show you tons of proof for our reasons to become vegan and talk to others about it. We live on this planet too; if someone is destroying it with their habits, and others are trying to preserve it, why is it that the ones destroying it just get free reign and we should just sit back because they scream ‘freedom’ and ‘choice?’ Does the animal have a choice? Do we not get a say in the planet we share?

      If you had just purchased a house and got a roommate to move in, and they started destroying the house, you’d kick them out. It wouldn’t matter if they didn’t understand nor comprehend why. No one would blame you and you wouldn’t have to defend your actions. This is not a stretch. So if we have information that what most animal consumers are doing is destroying the planet we share, why is it considered preachy or pushy when we inform you of the facts? When someone informed me of the facts, I listened and made a judgment call on whether it made sense or not. I didn’t start insulting them and becoming defensive. I saw specific and factual reasons for it. I saw evidence. Where is your evidence?

      There is a ton of proof out there that humans can live and thrive on a plant-based diet. There is tons of proof out there that the animals people are consuming (even in products they don’t think contain animal parts/secretions) are causing all kinds of disease and illness.

      Of course, no one would go to a factory farm themselves and spend a night in that wretched place (yet these poor creatures spend their sad, tormented lives there moment after moment) and then take them to be slaughtered and do the slaughtering themselves. So I won’t bring up the horrible plight of the animals that none of you could bear to witness during their slaughter, much less do it for yourself. You can certainly eat them, but you couldn’t bear to see them suffer. Nothing hypocritical there. And yes; I was that person too, but as soon as I realized what was going on, I stopped. There are no excuses. It’s simply not okay. Does that make me better than you? Perhaps – perhaps not. It certainly makes my choice better. There is a bigger picture out there. Look beyond yourselves and what you’ve been trained to think. I guarantee you, you will be amazed at the evidence.

      I have to say, I love the attempt at control in the above comment from Roberto.

      I could go on with my ‘rant,’ but I wouldn’t want to alienate anyone, now would I? 😉

      1. I love your comment!!!!! Especially what you write here:

        “You can certainly eat them, but you couldn’t bear to see them suffer. Nothing hypocritical there. And yes; I was that person too, but as soon as I realized what was going on, I stopped. There are no excuses. It’s simply not okay. Does that make me better than you? Perhaps – perhaps not. It certainly makes my choice better.”

        You hit the nail right on the head!

        1. Thank you. I didn’t think more could be said after your awesome article. Apparently, I can always find more to say. haha I certainly felt it was warranted.

      2. Gosh but this is good! I find it’s true over and over again… It’s not that people know and don’t care — They don’t even care to learn enough to know! If one actually used their minds instead of appeasing their tiny egos for once they’d see the very valid reasons why one chooses to live as a vegan. The overwhelming evidence leads to only one direction – IF they use their critical thinking to find it…

        No one I know has ever been “neutral” in the matter — Most are willfully blind and deliberately stubborn to not give an inch to the truth they know exists… It’s so tragic because it’s those carnists who will swear up and down that the problem is all in you. Tsk, tsk, tsk… Heck of a way to evolve our speciest into some kind of enlightened, peaceful or sustainable future.

      3. An on-point thrust and parry, fencer CMurph!

        Your lines that grabbed my attention:
        ~”… you don’t know vegans very well, nor anyone who fights for something that is way beyond the tiny world of your taste buds and traditions”
        ~ “We live on this planet too; if someone is destroying it with their habits, and others are trying to preserve it, why is it that the ones destroying it just get free reign [sic] and we should just sit back because they scream ‘freedom’ and ‘choice?’ Does the animal have a choice? Do we not get a say in the planet we share?”
        ~ the accompanying example you give of kicking out the roommate who is trashing the house you both share

        Interesting, isn’t it, how the selfish tendencies resident in human nature revile goodness — and reject it? Why do you suppose that is? Could it be because selfishness can’t hope to emulate goodness in any genuine way? Because selfishness is put to shame by goodness? Because selfishness feels tormented by goodness?

        I’m not saying that this commenter is selfish, just that he’s defending the selfish actions of humans. And in so doing he’s showing that selfishness loves to lash out and persecute goodness, make up lies about goodness, and even pretend to be goodness personified. At the same time, selfishness, a kind of darkness, can’t stand the light of day. It wants to be left alone instead of awakened. Wants to be left “comfortably unaware,” per the title of Dr. Richard Oppenlander’s new book.

        1. “An on-point thrust and parry, fencer CMurph!” Hahaha…I loved that, BlessUsAll. Thank you. Indeed, selfishness feels tormented by goodness. That’s exactly what it boils down to. We don’t feel superior to anyone; that’s why we aren’t willing to kill animals for our taste buds. That’s why we do think of the world as a whole instead of what is only supposedly best for humans. Maybe it’s others who see us as thinking we are superior because they aren’t capable of rising above their own little world and noticing the big picture out there. If anyone thinks they are superior, it’s people who take lives prematurely for five minutes on their tongue…just because they can. It’s people who don’t care that we all share this earth.

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