The following is a guest post by PETA staffer Daniel Parker.
Leather this, leather that—it's all I heard about when I bought my first motorcycle. I had always wanted a bike, but when I saw Brad Pitt riding one in the trailer for Benjamin Button, I knew it was time. I mean, nothing is cooler than Brad Pitt except Brad Pitt on a motorcycle. And if looking cool weren't enough, there was the economic advantage (65 mpg, anyone?). Plus, I thought it'd be a great way to restore the image of the vegan man as a cat-loving, tofu-eating Prius driver (OK, I do love cats … and tofu).
For a vegan, finding the right motorcycle is the easy part. Even if the seat is made from chemically-treated leather, it still won't stand up to the elements or hold its shape like a synthetic one will. As far as safety gear goes, popular opinion says that leather is most likely to keep you alive should you lay it down. For me, staying alive is important, and from boot to helmet, all my armor is man-made. And just as faux chicken nuggets and vegan cheese are becoming more readily available as demand increases, vegan motorcycle gear is on the rise.
Take these vegan motorcycle gloves that Aerostich Rider Warehouse is promoting this week. Complete with clever tagline "Ride 'til the cows come home," Aerostich, among the biggest of online resources for motorcyclists, is giving away a free bottle of Nikwax Waterproofing Spray (it's cruelty-free!) with the purchase of either pair of vegan gloves. I would have jumped on this immediately, except that I already own both the hot weather and the three-season version. These are high-tech, knuckle-armored, and tough as nails. They are reinforced with kevlar, which is the same stuff that bulletproof vests are made of—kind of important when it's you versus pavement. Both pairs are lightweight and super comfortable, and they fit like, well ... like a glove.
Most of us picture bikers as leather-vested tough guys, but two-wheeled vegans are sprouting up everywhere. Are you a vegan with an unlikely hobby? Tell us your story below.
Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.