This week, I asked two Merokean males in their mid-twenties about their thoughts on veganism.
Both are educated, successful young men who I’ve always found to be open-minded omnivores. One is in the political arena and the other is a corporate type. Their responses were great kindling for this week’s fire of conversation.
Michael, age 25, said, “I think dietary veganism is the first step in the right direction for the general populous of the U.S. to raise the level of self awareness in regards to what we put in our bodies daily. On the other hand, I disagree with ethical veganism, if not for the simple fact that our race thrived from mastering the art of slaughter when we shifted from the hunter/gather lifestyle. Yet, there could absolutely be a more ethical way of letting these animals live.”
Garrett, also age 25, replied with, “I'd say that there are a lot of misconceptions about veganism, especially among men. I would go as far as to say that it is viewed as less masculine, to be a man and be a vegan. I think that if more restaurants offered a strong vegan menu then it would be more commonplace and accepted by the skeptics, as well as more affordable to be vegans”
Let me begin by offering the thought that there is nothing more masculine or Amazonian than making firm, educated decisions for yourself and your family – decisions that are nutritionally and ethically focused. It puzzles me that anyone would not choose to consume much less meat and animal products, if none at all.
Granted, our ancestors in the Paleolithic era were hunters/gatherers, foraging and hunting their food. Their daily consumption was based on their caloric needs to sustain such active lifestyles that were based on the consistent need to survive. Today, although our abilities as a human race have technologically advanced substantially, I guarantee you would agree that no one you know successfully hunts down their lunch, nor is in the position to need to do so.
Our lives have changed and we eat far more calories than needed, empty calories at that. Some would argue that science and technology has, in many ways, hindered the ability to be an average American browsing the aisles of a supermarket. From the finished product on our plate being the farthest possible from its source to the 100 calorie packs of junk food, we have been duped.
Take a second look at your shopping cart this week – what’s the ratio of fresh produce to boxed, well-marketed items? How do you feel after every meal? Do you eat based on convenience? And most importantly, do you know how, when and from where your dinner arrived before you? The foods we eat are a great start to a long life of respect for all things. It will resonate, too, beyond you, and will turn around and positively impact you in more ways than you could imagine.
Whatever your reason may be, ask the questions. Besides inspiring thoughtful conversation, it could just provide you with the inspiration to find more answers.