The following is a
guest post by animal welfare reporter and activist Deborah Kay Steinken.
When people ask me why I choose to live a vegan lifestyle, I
explain the ethical, environmental, and health-related reasons that make me
Traditional western diets are the leading cause of cruelty to animals, which occurs at the hands of the meat, dairy, and egg industries. These
industries slaughter billions of land animals each year. Choosing not to look at
how a hamburger, a
glass of milk, or
an egg is
produced makes one just as guilty as the people who are slaughtering the
animals. Thankfully, there are thousands of people who are standing up for
animals by adopting a vegan diet and showing their compassion, respect, and
acceptance of their personal responsibility to all living beings.
Animals feel pain and fear death just as humans do. Animals on factory farms live a life of mental, emotional, and physical torture—they are separated from
their mothers at birth, confined to small spaces, pumped full of hormones and
drugs, mutilated without any pain relief, and violently slaughtered.
Vegans choose to eat foods that promote the health and wellness of animals, humans,
and the Earth What we eat affects the air, water, oceans, and forests—rainforests
are leveled to raise cattle, factory farms pollute rivers and lakes, overgrazing
erodes fertile land, vast quantities of energy and water are wasted to raise
animals for food, and drift nets used by the fishing industry turn acres of
oceans into graveyards.
I believe that by being vegan, we can evolve and live our
lives without negatively affecting our fellow inhabitants of the Earth; significantly
reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, and strokes; and live an ethical and
are your thoughts and experiences on living a vegan lifestyle? Please comment 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.