“But I’m vegan/vegetarian, Beez! Dafuq is wrong with you?!”
Calm down. Sit. Stay a while. I’m about to offer some solid advice that will allow vegans and their vegetarian kin to actually help animals by doing what they go on about endlessly – voting with their money.
First off, we have to recognise a very simple fact; meat consumption isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Despite the best efforts of many veg-folk (I’m not gonna write vegan and vegetarian every time I try to refer to them. Doen out of laziness, not disrespect) meat consumption is probably on the increase, since I’d say the rate of population growth immensely dwarfs the rate of veg-folk increasing in said populations. The fact that “voting with your money” isn’t working is also evident in our local towns; for me, the fact that the Veg-folk of my home town isn’t working is evident in the fact that, in just one area, there are 3 major supermarkets, each one a stone’s throw from one another, with massive meat sections. There are also several fish and chip and other food joints in this same square, and several of these have opened up in the past few years and had thriving business.
So, like I said, meat consumption isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
The solution? And by that I mean, “the more effective, significant solution?” Simple; buy free range/organic meat and eggs. I don’t give a damn if you just buy a box of eggs per week or a buy out everything they have at the store you’re in. Hell, you could do whatever you want with it – offer it to people as you leave the shop, bin it or, if you’re really nice, offer it to a local homeless shelter – god knows they could put it to good use.
“But why would I do this? I’m on of the veg folk!!”
Remember how we talked about how meat consumption isn’t going to drop drastically anytime soon?
Well, that fact means that more meat is being produced.
Remember those lovely pictures and videos of animals being beaten, raised in horrible conditions and even being left to die in their own shit? Well, that’s ONE way of farming meat. It’s not the only way, and I’m sure you’d agree that it’s not the best way. It is, however, the cheapest way. It being the cheapest way means it sells for less. It selling for less means it will be bought more. It being bought more means it’s more likely to become standard practice amongst farmers. If you pay more for better farming methods, you support those methods. If you campaign for better farming methods, you support those methods. If you support those methods, you make it more likely for them to become standard practice, and in turn for animals to be treated infinitely better. But if you buy nothing, you passively support crueller farming methods, since you’re not actively supporting either side of the fence, and thus allow the majority of consumers, who may very well buy factory-farmed meat, to outweigh those that pay for more better farmed meat.
If you believe in “voting with your money” then you can’t possibly disagree with me. If you believe that what people pay for influences what and how certain goods are produced, then you believe that buying factory farmed meat allows it to continue. Likewise, you must logically believe that buying ethically farmed meat supports it and allows it to continue. And if you are doing nothing, then, logically, you are passively voting for cruelty towards animals, since you are allowing factory-farmed meat to dominate the market.
Therefore, if you truly believe that you can influence the way animals are treated, and if you pull your head out of the sand and realise meat consumption isn’t going away, despite the best efforts to the contrary, then the only logical option you’re left with is to support methods which raise animals for meat consumption is the most humane way, whehter by buying and/or campaigning in favour of free range/organic animal products.
I welcome any opposing viewpoints, and hope that this realisation spurs those of you who deeply care about animals to be able to do more about it than just voice your opinion on the internet.