Since becoming a vegetarian I often get asked the question “What made you become a vegetarian?”.
This first thing I do is ask them “do you really want to know the answer or are you just asking to make conversation?”. The reaction is usually “no I really do want to know”.
Starting with finances being the primary reduction of meat I then go on to tell them what I have learned about the cruelty to animals in the meat industry. A really good example is to ask them if they enjoy eating veal and do they really know what veal is and how it gets to the table. Most people have absolutely no idea of the cruel process used to fatten up the calves from 0 – 6th months of age prior to their death.
To put it into perspective for them I ask them how it would feel if they had just given birth and their baby was put into a small crib on the other side of the room and they were not permitted to touch it, feed it or nurture it in any way….and even though a cow is not human it still has the nurturing instinct. These calves are put into small crates and force feed for 6 months – this is veal.
I don’t know if it has any effect on these people who ask me why I’ve become a vegetarian – and the example I give changes….it might be the chicken industry or the pork industry, it depends on who I’m speaking to. But I do try to do my little bit towards the preservation of, or at least the humane treatment of, fellow animals. If you are reading this and do eat meat, maybe you can at least take another look at where you are getting your meat from and begin supporting farmers who are free range, organic and humane. You could also, maybe, start having one meatless day a week – here’s a link to a really good e-book on How to Become a Vegetarian