Okay, so I’ve been seeing a lot of vegan hate on Tumblr recently, and I feel the need to respond to some of it because it’s starting to hurt my feelings.
Note: I really do like vegan jokes in the same way I like jokes about liberals and hippies, but the jokes on Tumblr are different, not clever but mean, and also not in-person, which makes me feel more attacked than part of a laugh.
Okay, so first of all, I understand that vegans tell people that they are vegan a lot. I understand that it sounds like we are trying to show you all how superior we are, and I understand how that can be annoying. But here’s the thing, for me at least, I try my best NOT to tell people I’m vegan. Sometimes it’s just inevitable. I offer the following parallel to clarify: a couple of years ago, some friends and I were engaged in tom-foolery and I managed to bruise the entirety of both of my forearms (don’t ask). Let me tell, you do not know how often people touch your forearms until they are solid bruises. In the same way, you do not know how often people offer you food, until you can’t eat any of it.
I personally am really sensitive to the jokes about how often vegans tell people they are vegan, so I try at all cost to avoid it. But you can only refuse snack food from your supervisor at work so many times before you look rude. Or the time my 3-year-old cousin tried to give me a saliva-covered fruit snack. I would have eaten it in a heartbeat because I love her and it’s just spit, but it had gelatin in it, so I couldn’t. Or the time I was working at a different store location than I normally do, and as I was leaving for my lunch break a guy giving away free Jimmy John’s samples came in and offered me one. I made the mistake of lying and saying I wasn’t hungry. The manager I was working with called me on it with a, “but you’re going out to lunch…?” and I had to fess up to my veganism. I try not to share it, but it’s virtually impossible.
And don’t even get me started on eating out.
As far as the criticisms go that vegans speak from a place of privilege, I understand that. Vegan food can definitely be more expensive and more difficult to procure based on where you’re living, and I’m aware of that. (Although it can be less expensive too, because you’re cutting out meat, which is pricey. It just depends on where you shop, how you shop, and what you buy.) But then people say I brag about cruelty-free meals (which I don’t…) while eating fruits and vegetables picked by underpaid immigrant workers. I’M SORRY, BUT BUYING LOCALLY-GROWN, ORGANIC PRODUCE IS A FUCK-TON MORE EXPENSIVE THAN BUYING VEGAN. HOW IS THIS NOT COMING FROM A PLACE OF PRIVILEGE?! And on top of that, I do buy organic/locally-grown foods when I can afford it. I try to shop at co-ops and my family is part of a farm share. So we’re trying.
So fuck you for assuming I love boasting about my diet.
Fuck you for assuming I’m not cognizant of all my food.
Fuck you for criticizing me for just trying my best to do something good for the planet, the animals, and my own health.
But mostly, fuck your jealousy.
Tagged as: vegan. veganism. vegan jokes. vegan privilege. vegetarian. vegan hate.
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