“10 Reasons why I’m Vegan and You’re Wrong.”

Via Waylon Lewis
on Mar 24, 2012
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NSFW language: not for children.

I’m vegan, but I don’t love self-righteousness, pre-judgment, or aggression, or evangelicalism, even in fellow vegans. It hurts our cause, if anything. ~ Waylon

1. I’m vegan ’cause I’m nice and you’re a selfish asshole and you know it.

I’m vegan ’cause I can eat a healthy diet with lots of protein and have a ton of energy without killing animals. I don’t like killing animals, even if they taste good (sorry, bacon and sausage, I miss you).

2. I’m vegan ’cause I like being a pain in the ass in restaurants.

I’m vegan despite the fact that I don’t like noisy righteous mean vegans, I don’t like calling myself vegan, I don’t like describing myself as vegan in restaurants (I don’t like being a picky pain, generally) and I like to eat out a lot, and that means being vegan all I can ever eat out is, like, salad or a bowl of, um…fruit.

3. I’m vegan ’cause I want to live longer than you.

I’m vegan because meat isn’t healthy, actually. Fish is so bad for all of us that pregnant women aren’t supposed to eat it in all 50 states, now. And meat is, you know, flesh, and animals eat all kinds of crazy things and are fed crap diets and, speaking of crap, living in little cages and are tortured and separated from friends and family and walk around in their own sh*t their whole life. And then you eat them. That’s kinda gross.

4. I’m vegan ’cause meat is basically just cut up burned flesh from tortured animals that’s then frozen and shipped around in plastic and you buy it in groceries, so unless you hunt there’s nothing macho or tough about eating it, and you’re a fat loser.

I’m vegan ’cause those who work in the meat industry are generally those who are the most horrified by the notion of eating hot dogs. I was hanging with a meat-packing-plant-working college kid the other day that said he still loved burgers, but that a lot of the meat that he worked with was disgusting, and if you eat hot dogs, you’re an idiot. This was coming from a guy who looked like he was a pale version of Jersey Shore’s Situation.

Okay, speed round.

5. I’m vegan ’cause I’m better than you are.

6. I’m vegan ’cause chicks dig compassionate guys.

7. I’m vegan ’cause I’m smart and educated and you’re not.

8. I’m vegan ’cause coconut ice cream is good, though it’s a total rip off.

9. I’m vegan ’cause I didn’t want that delicious amazing hand-rolled goldent buttery croissant with my Americano for Sunday brunch.

10. I’m vegan ’cause I don’t like having fun delicious barbeques with my friends.

Fuck…I’m giving up this vegan bullshit.


PS: on a serious note, whether we’re vegan or not, boycott conventional meat that hails from factory farms. That shit ain’t cool, clean, healthy, kind. It’s bad karma, broooo.


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | facebook.com/elephantjournal | twitter.com/elephantjournal | facebook.com/waylonhlewis | twitter.com/waylonlewis | Google+ For more: publisherelephantjournalcom


119 Responses to ““10 Reasons why I’m Vegan and You’re Wrong.””

  1. hahahhahah…. vegetarian suites me just fine 🙂 conventional factory anything is bad…meat dairy cereal…hell anything mass produced is just bad.

  2. non american says:

    Ummmm…. I volunteer with loads of cool vegans from sea shepherd and know lots of vegans that dont act that way. The vegan jokes you made arent very original and come off as more negative then the vegan snob you are trying to comically (but poorly) portray. Perhaps look outside boulder n you will see a array of vegans that are individuals. Perhaps if all our resturants werent covered in dairy dishes n we all gave our bodys and livers a break from excess dairy, a vegan could eat out more peacefully. Yes, thousands of animals dying for our consumption needs is an unsupported issue that needs you to make fun of it. Only a meat obsessed, closed minded 1950s male embodied person would write such a warped and disturbing ” other side of the arguement” article. You either care for the welfare of animals lives or you dont. If elephant journal supports such a demeaning “open” debate about vegans, i will unsubscribe. I am only vegetarian, yet i do not treat vegans this way. albert einstein was vegetarian, and yes it takes educated and intelligent people to get passed themselves and care for other living beings. Its 2012, i dont need to read this type of crap. I also dont want to be told to lighten up and i have no sense of humour. Articles like this cant keep getting put under that umbrella.

    • elephantjournal says:

      Lighten up and get a sense of humor.

      I'm still vegan, love animals, and just thought that—I know this might be controversial in the virulent vegan community (as opposed to the many-if-not-most non-aggressive, non-judgmental vegans out there, as you acknowledge—that getting some further conversation going about why to be vegan and how bad factory farms are might be done better through humor and heart than preachiness.

      But thanks for your insults–hard to be hurt when someone anonymously calls me things without knowing me. ~ Waylon

      • onlyonelikethis says:

        I'm so tired of this vegan bashing I don't even want to look at EJ anymore except as a last resort when I'm really bored.

    • boulderwind says:

      Here's one. No sense of humor.

  3. ECOmmitted says:

    Everybody has a choice to choose what he/she will eat! But it has to be informed choice, so educating people on what they actually eat when they buy processed meat in supermarket is really good. I support that. But if this article is not meant to be a joke, I kinda don’t like your attitude “I’m vegan and I’m better/smarter than you”

    I’m vegetarian and I recently wrote similar post on my blog: http://ecommitted.blogspot.com/2012/03/7-reasons-
    But I don’t think I’m smarter/better then non-vegeterians! Maybe only better informed 😉

  4. skink says:

    If all this stuff is so bad for us, why are we living longer than ever?

    The people of Monaco have a super long life expectancy and eat a diet rich in FRESH fish and FRESH local produce. I spent time with a Yogi that was 80 years old but looked 50. He said the secret to long life as a shot of scotch in the morning before his sun salutations and another in the evening after his moon salutations.

    I met an Irishmen who was 101 and said he lived so long because of a shot of whiskey and a bologna sandwich every day.

    What works for you is what works. It seems more and more vegans are becoming more and more angry and trying to shove their lifestyle down our necks. A lot like some religions.

    • elephantjournal says:

      Amen. I love how you're challenging the above article for being pro-vegan as the healthy choice, and others are challenging me for being anti-vegan. Let's just say I'm vegan despite vegans, and because of animal rights. And I have a ton of energy, and it's not that hard.

    • Johnny says:

      Studies have shown that pretty well all places where people regularly live to be a hundred (Tibet, Greek islands, villages in Bulgarian and Russia, etc.) have a couple of things in common: they're peasants and farmers, strong family relations, lots of manual labour, yoghurt, and sex, lots and lots of sex.

    • VeganNutritionist says:

      A religion is based in dogma. Veganism is based in science. It is a fact that farm animal suffer. It is a fact that animal agriculture is the most harmful industry on the planet. It is a fact that grain grown in third world countries with thousands of starving people is being exported to feed beef and dairy cows. It is a fact that animal protein is linked to dozens of diseases. It is a fact that plants contain protective qualities not found in meat.

      Now, it takes an awful lot of dogma to ignore these facts and keep on eating animal products while people starve, animals suffer, and the environment gets trashed. Isn't it your lifestyle shoving these global problems down our necks?

    • @Charlie43 says:

      I am in total agreement with this. I recently buried a 96 year old friend that frank 2 pints of Kessler's a day – one the first thing in the morning, the other in the evening watching television. He was as healthy as a horse right up until he died of old age. Raised chickens, kept a large garden and canned and smoked his own food. I believe it is true that it depends on the individual and their system. I am 68, smoke 2 packs of non-filter cigarettes a day and drink a half-fifth of Captain Morgan's every night, and smoke weed along with this for arthritis pain. I am fairly healthy outside of the usual aches and pains of an old man that has lived his entire life in the fast lane. If it takes me out tomorrow, I will just slide up to graveside on a bad-assed Harley with a good looking redhead with big boobs on the bitch pad, and say "What a ride!"

  5. Ilana says:

    Why is Elephant Journal so angry at vegans? This is not the first artice that condescends… If veganism didn't work for you, that's okay, you don't have to feel bad or guilty, but kindly stop taking stabs at the lifestyle that has saved so many just because it didn't work for you. That's just bitter.

    • Ilana says:

      Like, trust me, I'd love love love to have that crossaint, and the other day I was confronted by a grilled cheese shop that looked so good I almost drooled. I'm not gonna lie to you and say it's easy sometimes. But since it's not all about ME then it makes it easier. Doesn't make it easier when people undermine and say crap like this article. And to the commenter above, maybe vegans wouldn't be so angry if non vegans didn't keep asking, "But don't you miss how delicious it is?" I don't know, I don't ask you if you miss having clear arteries.

      • elephantjournal says:

        I agree re the croissant etc. I have the same reaction when I have a craving…who cares about the taste, that lasts for a minute, when I can think about the welfare of animals, which is far more important to me?

    • elephantjournal says:

      Thanks, Ilana, for your concern. I still am vegan, actually. It's been pretty easy, and healthy. I was veggie for 9 years before, so the transition hasn't been that hard. I just thought to inject a little humor, and get people thinking through fun…remember fun, vegan?

  6. Lucy says:

    Wow..this article is so full of EGO! I don't understand why such article is even posted! If this website is focusing about mindful life" well..this article is NOT mindful at all isn't it? It's full of anger, ego, and rude words.. Everyone of us is different and almost all problems in this world is because people think that their way is right and others are wrong. And this article is showing just that..

    • elephantjournal says:

      Sorry, among normal people, we call this satire. You're mistaking ego for not taking myself or my path too seriously, or if I do, making fun of myself and my path. Try it.

      • Jean says:

        Ok…I’m a yoga instructor and I can still giggle when people make fun of us…why is it so hard for vegans to giggle at satire about vegans? It wasn’t as if you were seriously suggesting you were going to stop being a vegan…I took it as a little tongue in cheek and ability to lighten up. And I love animals and don’t think we should eat processed anything…but I can still appreciate a little humor about it!

  7. For those of you who didn't get it (or maybe only read the large print instead of what's under it) this is pointing out a certain attitude that sometimes crops up with any mindful choice made for mindless reasons.

    • Ilana says:

      maybe if the writing were at all creative, insightful, or entertaining, this would be true, but every single one of these points sounds likes person who eats meat making fun of vegans because they’ree bitter, not at all like someone “pointing out” a “certain attitude.” also maybe if elephant journal didn’t regularly post articles calling out the supposed self-righteousness of vegans in a “joking” manner. didn’t that joke die in like the eighties? I’m so confuse by the purpose of this article, and the purpose of elephant journal continually taking hrs at vegans. aka, what’s the point? and yes I read the whole article. it went from “things I’ve heard people say” to “things I’ve never ears people say” (I’m vegan because I’m better than you? right) …. in conclusion. why isn’t ej (particularly Waylon, considering most of these articles are written by him…) trying to make EJ a place that inspires compassion rather than division?

      • elephantjournal says:

        ouch. You're so mean. If you're out to do PR for vegans, please stop…you're hurting our cause. I've published 100s of animal rights articles totally 100,000s of views. I'm doing my part to spread the message that animals are feeling beings, too, and we have no right to mistreat them. What have you done lately, other than leave angry comments?

        • Ilana says:

          when I get home from teaching at night I bake cookies do the next day I have something to give to the many people I encounter on a daily basis asking for help. what about you?

  8. Branáin says:

    I'm not vegan, but I do enjoy eating them grilled on a buttery roll.

  9. John says:

    Funny article. On a more serious note; a glass of milk and a slice of meat could save a childs life today.

  10. Pypsy says:

    (veg) Ann – no, you wouldn't have ever met a Vegan like the "fictional" one portrayed here because you're vegan too. A fellow vegan would not condescend to you the way they often condescend to us non-vegans. Just because you personally haven't experienced it doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

    Read your post again and you will see that throughout it you refer to yourself as "kind" and "compassionate" because you're vegan. Do you realize that is a back handed insult implying that those who aren't vegan aren't kind and compassionate? And then you call the author "self centered." What's so kind and compassionate about that? Or does your compassion only extend to non-humans?

    You question our dietary choices with impunity, but if we dare to question yours, we're labeled, (in YOUR words) "self righteous jerks." Again, I'm not seeing the compassion.

    And if a restaurant gets my order wrong (I want my food just right because I'm paying for it, JUST LIKE YOU) then it is THEY who have wasted the grain and water, not I.

    This article was clearly meant as a JOKE, but it is based on real attitudes that non-vegans get frequently, otherwise it wouldn't be funny.

    I'm happy for you that you have found a lifestyle that makes you happy. Please return the courtesy. We can all respectfully exchange ideas and information, but then each of us is allowed to make our own choices without derision from strangers.

    • elephantjournal says:

      Thank you for holding up a mirror to our silliness. "I'm compassionate, and you're not, why are you such a judgmental meat-eating jerk."

      • Jenifer says:

        I was vegan for several years. My husband is and has always been an omnivore. I'm an omnivore now, too.

        I went vegan because I wanted to. I never considered it "the most compassionate" diet. I never considered it anything at all. It was just what I wanted to do.

        My husband is an omnivore. When I became interested in veganism, he became really interested in food sourcing. We discovered eating locally and seasonally, we discovered organic foods and free range (real free range, not labeled in a grocery store so it probably is free range — we knew the farms). Our diets — though different — were very healthy.

        I had a number of vegan friends — a small community. It was nice to get together and have nice BBQs where we didn't have to worry about food cross contamination and the like. It was fun to chat about new produce that we'd discovered and swap recipes. And, also where to source our shoes. 🙂

        5 years into my veganism, I was diagnosed with hypocholesterolemia. This means that one's cholesterol is so low that the neurological function of the individual is affected. I was starting to have those problems. I went back to eating eggs.

        All hell broke loose with my "friends." Suddently, I was a 'traitor.' I should 'give up my health for the animals.' Except that none of them were having to make that decision, where they? Easy enough to say, but not easy enough to do.

        I was accused of never really caring about veganism, being a fraud, being a terrible animal murderer, of being heavily influenced by family and society (weak minded). And the funniest of all? Being told that I just did it wrong, and had I been doing it right, then I would be able to be vegan.

        At the very least, the person who accused me of this one had the courtesy to somewhat "ask" me about it. But she knew how I ate. She knew it was local, diverse, organic. She knew that I was well aware of vegan nutrition — she knew that I knew more than she did! In this group, I was the go-to person for research on nutrition! How could I possibly have "gotten it that wrong." She said "well, behind closed doors, you must have been eating junk food."

        Yes, that must be it. It couldn't be because veganism doesn't work for *every* body!

        I'm now paleo. I still eat local, seasonal, organic. I community garden, we're learning to forage, too. I eat sustainably caught fish, shellfish (not my favorite, but they are abundant and able to be foraged right outside our door). 90% of our food comes from a 100 mile radius, and as much as we can outside of that comes from the wider country (new zealand).

        I'm happy with this way of eating. It's simple, healthful, compassionate, earth-friendly, and it keeps us all healthy and happy.

        I am just of the mind that people need to find their own way, without someone telling them they are a bad person for going a way that is different.

  11. guest says:

    glad I read the last "on a serious note". I am vegetarian because I can't afford buying real meat from healthy cows and I refuse to buy factory meat.

  12. (veg)Ann says:

    I have been vegan for 18 years and I raised my kind, compassionate, respectful kids that way.  It’s the easiest thing I have ever done in my life.  When I see a muffin and I want it, all I need to know is that there is an animal product in it to make it no longer look appealing to me.  Since I am not a child who wants what I want NOW, and there is no likelihood that I will risk starvation if I don’t have it, I can easily and happily wait for a delicious, healthy plant-based version.

    As a long time vegan, I have never ever met a vegan who this mythical attitude that is falsely portrayed in this piece of BS writing.  All these years as a vegan, you would think I would have met at least ONE, especially since I have likely met many more vegans than the author has met.  In fact, most of the vegans I know/meet, aren’t even comfortable asking for anything at restaurants, because they fear some self righteous jerk will act like they are a problem for their wanting to eat with compassion and to have the food they are paying for the way they want it.  Go figure!  I have NO problem asking to have my food the way I want it, because I’m paying for it, just like ANY OTHER consumer prefers to get what they prefer when they pay for it, BUT I am ALWAYS kind.  I am even kind to the jerk-ass server who treats me like I’m a problem.  Doesn’t bother me in the least, because I know it’s their problem that they are a jerk.  I don’t need to stoop to their level.  What on earth should a vegan have to be ashamed of in the first place?  Not wanting to cause harm to a fellow being?  Reeeally?!?  Sounds like something to be proud of!  

    Funny that some meat eaters feel perfectly justified to harass the servers to get “their” steak “just right” and will sometimes even shamelessly waste it by sending it back (while children starve and die of thirst for the grain and water that was wasted to grow it), if it’s slightly overcooked, but OMG don’t any damn kind hearted vegan dare to ask if the bread is vegan so they can have a damn veggie sandwich, or they risk bashing and belittling!  WTF is THAT all about?!

    Sounds like the the person who wrote this is a self centered meat eater with a big time guilty conscience he can’t cope with, so he is lashing out at innocent people who are actually bothering to make kind choices.  I might say “perhaps you should get a life”, as meat eaters say to me on a fairly regular basis, but I have no desire or desperate need to express such disrespect of a fellow human animal.  You certainly had the right to write and post it, but was doing so a responsible, worthwhile action?

    I am a joyful vegan 99% of the time.  The 1% of the time that I’m not, is due to jerks like the person who wrote this pointless, waste of time and energy so-called article.  What good does it do to write such things?  Surely doesn’t promote kindness, compassion world peace, now does it!  Quite the opposite.  In fact, thanks so much for encouraging even more shameful vegan bashing.  You must be so proud!

    Wanna meet me for tea and a chat sometime?  Maybe if you actually spent some quality time with a nice vegan, you might not have such a nasty, disrespectful attitude.  Let me know.  I’m in Boulder twice a week and I also don’t mind making a special trip just for you.  Oh, perhaps you might join me for Vegan Monday at Nepal Cuisine; ask for Ann.  I get there around noon (or whenever is the best time for you between 11 AM and 3 PM) and I’ll treat.  You have nothing to lose.  Right?

    • elephantjournal says:

      Read the comments, including your own, on our many blogs about food and animal rights, and you'll find 100s of meanie, aggressive, judgmental, own-cause-hurting vegans out there. I've had the honor to meat them all.

      As for me, thanks for judging me from afar, that must be hard work. No, it must be lazy and too-easy. I'm vegan—just enjoyed granola and almond milk this morning at Shine with a friend eating bacon and another enjoying eggs.

  13. DJ Sukha says:

    everyone needs to chill the fuck out. stereotypes are funny because they are sorta true.

  14. Hanuman says:

    ATTENTION SELF-RIGHTEOUS VEGANS: Unless you GROW ALL YOUR OWN FOOD without destroying any wildlife habitat in the process. And without harming or displacing gophers, birds and other wildlife in the process. And unless your food is grown LOCALLY without harmful, life-destroying fossil fuels or chemicals. And unless you grow utilizing strict water conservation. And unless you have renounced driving your car to the grocery store to buy your vegan foods.

    *Then I would suggest that your vegan diet is every bit as destructive and murderous as any meat eater who raises meat locally and conscientiously. And you are a clueless hypocrite to boot! LOL

    • JR in SF says:

      weird. i always thought hanuman was vegan.

    • veggiefitness says:

      A vegan diet can not even come remotely close to doing the damage and destruction a meat eating diet does. You bring up a bunch of junk that most of us cannot even control, then throw it in our faces as if we don't know this. Do you not think that we don't wish we could all grow our own food? I mean come on, your really grasping for straws here plus most of forest destruction is done to home COWS and other animals that you will all eventually eat or to plant to corn which your food must also eat. Check your facts before you try to fact check US. Not to mention the farm animals destroy the land, which leaves the ground so eroded that we cannot even farm it once you kill them and move to the net plot of destruction.
      Vegans/Vegetarians DO CHANGE what they can CONTROL, unlike meat eaters who show absolutely no self control or care for anything or anyone but themselves. Don't throw the Earths destruction at us baby, cuz you know its the other way around. Now go jump in your Prius and eat that steak.

  15. Joey W says:

    Waylon, I love your cheeky chappy articles! 🙂

    Keep up the good work, spreading the good word!


  16. (veg)Ann says:

    To EJ and Pypsy, why is it that when a group of people are disparraged (jokingly or not), then defend themselves, they are accused of being judgmental and not having a sense of humor.  My sense of humor is fine, when something is actually funny.  I totally got what you were going for.  Some of it was kind of funny, but as your vegan bashers have proven with their responses, some of it wasn’t.  I would not have come on here and said anything, had there not been something insulting written in the first place.  I called myself kind and compassionate as a defense to what was written that was negative and disrespectful, then I’m bashed for defending myself.  How unfair is that?  At this point to twist what I wrote into me somehow saying I am better, is what is actually back handed.  Remember, you don’t know me either.  I invited you to lunch, EJ, so we could have a face to face, but then was accused of being judgmental of someone I don’t know.  I know and agree that I don’t know you, so that was my point of offering to meet you.  Since you don’t know me, Pupsy, you don’t know that I am face to face with non-vegan folks on a very regular basis and I am also around a lot of vegans so I actually see how vegans interact with others as a rule, rather than the generalized way that we are all painted with a broad brush by people who only meet an angry vegan on occasion.  Vegans are somewhat justified to feel a bit angry, knowing and having to accept how innocent animals are being abused and killed on a secondly basis by our fellow human animal, and it’s all disgustingly legal.  It’s heart breaking to not be able to stop it, and we have to live with knowing that every second of every day.  There’s some “fun” for you!  Har har!  Meat eaters, on the other hand, get defensive and angry toward vegans, because they don’t want to stop what they are doing that contributes to all the suffering, death and waste.  There’s some logic for you!  They grab onto any BS so-called “point” like the accidental deaths of the occasional bird or worm (like you somehow give a damn about those birds and worms; riiiight!), caused by us damn animal abusing vegans.  Or (in my best valley girl voice) “oh my god, you vegans should buy local or you suck, so I can feel ok with killing ALL the animals I want to keep eating!”, in order to in some warped way justify the many many deaths and many many more thousands of gallons of water and gas, and tons of wasted grains, that meat eating has been proven to contribute to.  Seriously?  Sorry we don’t find that funny.  Likely because it’s just old and lame, and it’s time to stop.

    EJ, I do have a sense of humor.  You judged ME and generalized about ME, without knowing ME.  If you think silly, jerky comments like “vegans on a buttered bun” is a sign of a sense of humor (while billions of animals are dying for absolutely no reason), then I can clearly see where you are coming from.

    A “joke” is suppose to be funny for all involved.  When your “joke” is hurtful to the other party, even if you consider yourself part of the same group as that party, then it isn’t a joke.   It’s kind of like an ugly nerd calling another ugly nerd, a stupid ugly nerd, and hurting his feelings in the name of humor.  And accusing the object of your “joke” of not having a sense of humor, doesn’t make it ok.  Bullies do that all the time.  Not cool!  I’m not calling you a bully, because I don’t know your intent in your heart, but your article and defensive responses are displaying bullyish behavior (whether you want to own it or not) that is hurtful and rude.  Trying to turn it back onto me by saying I don’t know you, doesn’t change the fact that your article wasn’t funny.  I can only respond to what you wrote and I can tell you, all you did was encourage justification of bashing a group of people that already get bashed more than enough, as your supporters have more than proven.  And it’s socially acceptable, because we are the minority.  ‘Cuse me for not gettin’ the joke.  If you wrote an equivalent “joke” article about a particular religion or race, it wouldn’t fly, and you know it.  I suggest you get out and participate in this wonderful vegan community, you say you belong to, and meet some of folks you generalize about about.  You might just find out that you truly are “wrong” and you might also find some love and support along the way.  Maybe you can then write an article from another perspective that would contribute to good, rather than contributing to vegan bashing, deguised as a joke.

    Again, come have some laughs with me at lunch any Monday.  My offer to treat still stands.  I’ll be the one wearing the vegan AR shirt, as it is one of the MANY ways I personally walk my talk on a daily basis.

  17. Betsyv says:

    I really think this is just another example of vegans senselessly and viciously slaughtering thousands of plants a day and feeling an incredible sense of latent guilt as a result. I mean the mere green carnage is enough to send a vegan over the edge as demonstrated by all the meaningless attacks above. It’s a sad day for the plant world my friends. ; )

    • elephantjournal says:

      I always wonder if self-righteous vegans think about palm oil, or oil oil–the kind in their cars–both of which cause immense destruction to this earth, and the animals upon it. Is it vegan to drive a car? Nope.

  18. Karen says:

    I try not to push my agenda too much, but I really wish everyone who jokes about or rags on vegans would go watch Earthlings on YouTube. Once you see the kind of stuff that goes on in the meat and dairy industries, it's pretty hard to joke around. Maybe that's why vegans seems like killjoys at the meat party. But really what's happening here is massive agribusiness profiting from its products while consumers and nonconsumers fight with each other.

    • elephantjournal says:

      I agree. Watching videos and blogging about animal rights and meat and diet issues is why I became vegan. Education around these issues leads to veganism, not the other direction, in my experience.

      • Karen says:

        How do you keep your "sense of humor" when people joke about killing plants and suggest that's equivalent to slaughtering animals? Or when they say you're being too "serious"? I love animals and keep up with lots of activist media, so when people laugh and act like my horrified response to the suffering of millions of animals is a "drag," it's hard not to feel that they're really just ignorant.

        Is education important? Of course it is. But beware being an apologist for ignorance; that seems quite

  19. maru says:

    What kills me really is that while vegans, meat eaters and/or enlighted ones discuss…. the 25 billion animals are still in the factory farms. Can we all get to a place FOR ONCE where the reality of these animals can just change?? the rest is good for shit

  20. elephantjournal says:

    Waylon Lewis
    I just wrote a silly blog about how vegans are judgmental and serious and vegans left a bunch of judgmental and serious comments.

    This silly blog uses humor and making fun of myself and other vegans to engage non-vegans in thinking about their diet, and about how veganism is still worth doing and surprisingly easy and health, and how animals are (mis)treated and factory farming is horrible. But, surprise, some vegans didn't get the joke.

    Yes, friends, veganism has a PR problem: vegans.

    Yes, friends, veganism is about compassion, gentleness…and it can be fun.

    Benjamin F Hahaha. Classic! Case in point…

    It seems to be a common thread, that most groups of any sort are most undone by themselves. Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Atheists, Republicans, Democrats, Creationists, Evolutionists, Environmentalists… They all seems to turn away far more people with their own actions and attitudes than their detractors could ever do.

    Tatum B
    hahaha. "Yes, friends, veganism has a PR problem: vegans." Love this!!! (Great article too!) Everyone needs to be less uptight!

    Shelley B
    I am really happy your diet of veganism works for you, however it doesnt work for everyone. People need to be careful when considering a change from a whole food diet to a restrictive diet. I am happily an omnivore, done the research etc. Veganism and vegetarianism made me sick and malnourished. I wont be 'trying' it again.

    Seth Braun Waylon, this is awesome. "Angry Vegans" – when I was studying at Integrative Nutrition, Julia Butterfly Hill showed up and sopke about love, and truth and beauty and she started her talk with, "Hi, I am a joyful vegan," and got immediately into this dynamic about angry vegans. By the way of the vegetarian conversation, what do you think of this? http://www.oprah.com/health/Oprah-on-Stillness-an
    Oprah on Stillness and Meditation – Oprah Visits Fairfield Iowa – Oprah.com http://www.oprah.com
    How Oprah Winfrey found stillness in Fairfield, Iowa.

    Kate Bartolotta The comments were hilarious!

    Tobye Hillier I'm on a yoga retreat right now… just finished a lovely vegan, Demeter bio dynamic dinner, including roast potatoes followed by apple crumble and custard 🙂 Nice and all the better cause I had a whopper meal on the way here!

    Liz L Yes, snide snootiness gets old very quickly! It does come in all forms, shapes and sizes.

    Kristin H Just read the article! Loved it! You sure did hit some nerves! Makes me wonder what those people are so scared of by adding some humor? Keep it up, I love your writing!

    Alex B Man, the comments are fabulous. Thanks for pointing that out! And you *knew* it would happen, so thanks for writing. 😉

    Kallie B Love it!

    Jennifer Tomasi
    ‎..Much like many Christians perhaps? Very good point not to be a hater!

  21. @marrael says:

    "I'm a level 5 vegan — I won't eat anything that casts a shadow." I've always loved that line from the Simpsons!

  22. karlsaliter says:

    I enjoy this quite a bit because it gets us talking about the facts. And the facts are these, maam.
    1) There's a whole lotta vegan bashin' going on.
    2) It's not all undeserved.

    I'm guilty. By which I mean vegan. Sorry! I do not hate you for eating meat, I promise. Well, not too much.
    HAA! Oh God, how do you convey a sarcastic tone and an eye glimmer with pixels? You don't.
    So when we read Waylon's article, it can get muddy. Fast. And Waylon is no fool: he knows as much before
    he hits a single key. The muddiness invites us to this, a flurry of comments, many deeply felt.

    Veg Ann rocks, by the way. She is cool, I know her.

    So the can is open, and I think we would be best served maybe by looking into "how can vegans get meaters
    to look into the implications of eating meat without coming off as total douche bags?"

    Because I want to stop the suffering of the animals. And I do not want to be an asshole.

    The subject is TOUCHY. You want to comfort people before you even start.
    But you can stand on your head and hold two pinwheels in your hands, spread your legs and sing:

    "It's not not not about you you you.
    Its about the animals.
    I am not attacking you, I just feel so so sorry for them
    We do not have the right to do this to them it makes me sad"

    And what will be heard is "whoa, my diet and deeply personal practice of eating food is being attacked.
    I mean, that's a pretty cool headstand, but this is vegan douchebag wrapped in a circus trick."

    Believe me, it has happened to me countless times. Decades ago, it was fun to watch people unravel and unleash
    on me when presented with unwelcome facts. It is not fun anymore.

    I am not so stupid as to think that satisfaction pinned on other people's actions will ever arrive.
    Nor so dim as to believe unwelcome news wrapped in sugar will be consumed.
    But I am curious and looking hard at how to convey what I believe without pointing the finger
    or talking down.

    I look for examples of this message being delivered that way.

    Here is the best I've found so far.

    Have you seen any good ones?

    Yours in "how the hell can we do this."

    • Clare says:

      Hilarious! And true..it is very difficult to phrase one's veganess, and the question is usually posed by someone sitting next to you, eating meat. I will have to try the pinwheels though.

  23. Suri says:

    My question for vegans is , can you be a healthy vegan if you are alergic to nuts and pulses including soy? If the answer is no then doesnt it mean that veganism is not for everyone? If the answer is yes , is there any scientific evidence that a vegan diet that excludes protein sources like pulses and nuts is healthy? I am asking because a lot of people do have this problem.
    I ve met vegans that have 3 or even 5 children can that be considered ethical or compassionate given the fact that there is one too many people on this planet and that natural resources are getting more scarce by the day ? Even if your 6 kids are vegan they will still need clothes and stuff and if they grow up in a developed country their environmental footprint will still be huge. So is being a vegan with 5 kids ethical?… Just asking….in my opinion the answer is no…. In my opinion it is just as egoistical and unconscientous and uncompassionate as eating meat.

    • karlsaliter says:

      Suri I think that first one is an excellent question, and the answers are going to vary with the individual. Most people get more protein than they need, and most bodies can assimilate nutrients from a wide array of sources. Funny educational video on that here http://www.elephantjournal.com/2012/01/likeable-v
      Nutrition is a dodgy science at best. I do not have any scientific evidence for you.

      Having kids is a huge burden on the planet. It is a separate issue. But the value of your question is that it points to an interesting tendency. People often counter the vegan argument by underlining some unrelated aspect where the vegan is not a saint. Why do you think that is?

      • suri says:

        Ok, correct me if i am wrong , the two main concerns of vegans are environmental and about causing unnecessary suffering right? Although veganism and overpopulation are separate issues they are related in the sense that overpopulation is also an environmental issue …now if you are literate about environmental issues – like most vegans claim to be- you know that the effects of overpopulation cause a lot of animal and human suffering as well -from habitat loss to over exploitation of natural resources – and everything that is in between .
        Also population and industrial production of food are not only interrelated , they auto-catalize each other in an ever growing feedback loop , the bigger the population the more mechanized brutal ways of production are needed… In the next decades demand for vegetables , cereals and meat products will continue to rise as we reach the 9 to possibly 12 billion people mark in 2050 . Organic and local is great but usually to expensive or unavailable for the majority of the population (a liter of soy milk is 4 dollars where i live and imported from the US)
        Do you still think this are completely separate issues? If you are concerned about the environment and consider yourself a compassionate person is it right to turn a blind eye on the population issue? If you are one of those who like walking the talk isnt having many children inconsistent?
        In asking questions of right and wrong , is having many kids in this day and age right?
        Is killing animals the way we do it right? Definitely not.

    • onlyonelikethis says:

      Ya! So you think you found a flaw in some vegan somewhere so that gives you an excuse to continue to hurt more animals?

      Look, been vegan for 5 yrs vegetarian 26 and have one child of my own and adopted two other kids as a single mom as well as numerous animals. We get it, we get all of it an we do our best to avoid doing as much harm as possible to animals because they are the target of the largest form of slavery ever to be induced in the history of our planet.

  24. Amanda says:

    I became a vegan because I don't wish to be the cause of suffering. I stopped being vegan because I was exhausted and sick the whole time, sorely undernourished despite eating the healthiest, most balanced diet I could, culled from the best of the vegan websites and cookbooks out there. My frustration with the vegan attitude–and yes, this article represents the attitude of many of my vegan cohorts–is that they believe that if they can do it, anyone can, and if they don't they're in denial. Unfortunately it's not true. I wish I had a nickel for every sick vegan I knew then, too.

    • karlsaliter says:

      Amanda this is a perspective I can truly respect.
      Thanks for leading with your heart and trying it out.
      Also, you remind me to have compassion, and to understand
      that being able to do well on plants is a gift. I should be grateful.
      Aaaand, not pushy.

    • guest says:

      Same here. I'm a nutritionist and I would dearly love to be vegan because of the environmental and emotional components of the diet. However, after three months of a very careful and balanced vegan diet I became sick and anemic. I'm gluten and dairy sensitive so it makes even a vegetarian diet too tricky for balanced nutrition. Since eating meat I have tons more energy. I make sure I source organic free range as well treated as possible meat sources, I thank the animal for giving its life for mine, and I'm ok with it. One day I will be worm food so I am part of the cycle of life.

    • BldrGrrrl says:

      Thank you for your sensible response. People tend to forget individual needs and assume, like you pointed out, that if they can do something, everyone can. Allergies, absorption problems and other health issues can affect the kind of diet a person needs. I wish everyone could be as open minded as you, Amanda.

  25. Lorin says:

    Well, whatever side of the issues you stand on (and there are more than just 2), this sure got some conversation going, eh? So, it served that purpose.

    I know plenty of vegans who aren't even a little bit jackassy about it. I know some that are. I don't know any that think they are 100% avoiding harm.

    There is very little point in tearing each other down for our choices and much to be gained by discussing them with tolerance, and with understanding that everyone is on a path. See some previous thoughts here.

  26. karlsaliter says:

    Lorin is right, tearing each other down does not serve us. But discourse does. I'm looking for feedback on how vegans should best approach meat eaters on the ethics of eating meat today. Please comment here: http://www.elephantjournal.com/2012/03/smarting-o

    Because this conversation matters. And how meat eaters feel about being approached will help vegans find practices that work. Nobody wants to keep doing it wrong.

  27. Did you ever think of being vegetarian and not vegan? I was vegan for about two years and couldn't swing it. I missed cheese, damnit. But now I'm vegetarian, five years strong. I hate telling people I am a vegetarian. I'm sometimes tempted to tell waiters/waitresses that I am allergic to meat (and fish) so that they do not judge me. Is that weird? Sometimes I will order things and realize after the fact that there is a beef or fish base to it!! This happens a lot with thai, indian & chinese cuisine. Sigh.

    xo lauren

    • Laura says:

      I actually want to do the same thing. Because I know vegans are hated which sucks for me because I am 0% like the stereotypes in this article. In fact, my boyfriend and his entire family I live with eats meat and they make fun of me when I never try to push them. Ever. or even educate them. I stay away from vegan/omnivore debates like they're the plague. haha

      So yeah, at restaurants I will say I am lactose intolerant a lot.

      The meat I just try to figure out if it's in there on my own or I will check websites. Sometimes I will call way in advance and ask them super politely about my options so that when I come in they may not know it's me. haha

      I know you said you're vegetarian and no longer vegan but same thing. I never like to use the label because it invites attacks. Maybe not from a waiter cause they are kinda paid to be nice but then I assume they're holding it in.

  28. Greg Eckard says:

    Very funny and candid! I enjoyed the picture.

  29. SoloVegan says:

    The hardest thing about being vegan is dealing with the non-vegan world. They are convinced you are nutso because you choose to live a life most of the rest of the people in the world consider different, but that is in reality a much more compassionate and healthy way to live.

    The second hardest thing about being a vegan is dealing with the fact that veganism has been given such a bad name by a few crazy people out there who also call themselves vegan. Case in point, (veg)Ann. I know her personally. It is frightening how off the charts crazy she is once you get to see who she really is under the sweet, gray haired, grandma disguise she uses to lure new, innocent vegans into her web of paranoia. Be warned, if you get too close to (veg)Ann you will get burned. Many, many, many people before you have. Don't think you are any different!

  30. TotallyVegan says:

    Oh please everyone. Don't take (Veg)Ann to heart. I have known her for years and she is the most narcissistic, self-centered, self-righteous person I have ever met. She thinks she is so kind, but she is lies and hurts other people to make herself feel good. She ALWAYS thinks she is right even in the face of overwhelming evidence. She is the most damaging person to the vegan community I have ever met and most people are starting to see this. So, please don't think all, most, or even a significant portion of vegans are like her.

    On the flip side of that, I have met Waylon and he is exactly like her. Totally narcissistic and is incapable of doing anything unless he gets publicity and attention from it. He doesn't care about the environment, he just fakes it for the attention.

  31. VeganNutritionist says:


    Did you know that 100 calories of broccoli has more protein than 100 calories of beef? You don't ever have to worry about protein and it is a huge myth. If you ate nothing more than fruit and vegetables, you would get well more protein than your body needs. You don't need any beans or nuts at all.


    I can help you if you are interested. Most of the information on the vegan diet is not healthy. You can be very unhealthy on a vegan diet. Also, anytime you change your diet to one with less calories and less toxins, you will not feel well while your body detoxes and gets used to less dopamine. I highly recommend Dr. Joel Furhmans book "Eat to Live". I have read dozens of books on plant-based nutrition, and his is the most thorough.

    • Suri says:

      Sorry but you are wrong , 250 grams of brocoli have 6 grams of protein , whereas 100 grams of meat have 26 grams of protein . In order to get the same amount of protein from brocoli you would need to eat about 1 kilo . Also if you think you can get all the necessary nutrients just from fruits and veggies includuding aminoacids you are terribly misinformed. This is one of the reasons why a lot of people who try a vegan diet-myself included- fail so miserably , because there is a lot of bogus , unscientific information out there.

      • VeganNutritionist says:


        I said calories, not grams. 250 grams of broccoli is around 85 calories. 100 grams of ground beef is around 305 calories. 100 calories of broccoli gets you around 9 grams of protein, and 100 calories of ground beef gets you around 8.6 grams of protein. The beauty of it is that the broccoli is much more food and you will fill fuller faster and be consuming tens of thousands of micronutrients not found in meat.

        A baby in its first two years of life will grow 350%. At no time in a humans life will it grow faster. The best food during this growth is its mothers milk which contains around 4.5% protein by calories. Adult humans need much less and the WHO determined that around 95% of the population is fine with 2.5% protein. The other 5% might have problems absorbing protein efficiency. So, they double it to 5% and that covers 99% of the population. Then they doubled it again just to be sure. 10% of protein by calories is what the WHO recommends and if you eat nothing but fruit and vegetables, you would find it quite difficult to get less than 6% protein by calories. More than enough for 99% of the population. A focus on more green leafy vegetables would easily put one over the 10% mark.

        Most people have trouble changing to a whole-foods plant-based diet for a few reasons. One is that is can take several months for their bodies to detox and eliminate the addictions to the rich foods they are eating. Another is that they might be consuming a lot of processed foods which may contain less micronutrients than the animal products they were consuming. Pasta, white rice, breads, crackers, oils, faux meats, etc. are all stripped of most of their micronutrients and left with empty calories. This doesn't give the body what it needs to detox successfully. Another reason is that they are stuck in "The Pleasure Trap" as explain by Doug Lisle. It is hard to argue that a smoker who quits smoking is doing something good for their health. But even though they are doing something healthy for themselves, they will feel horrible until the body detoxes. Same goes with highly toxic foods.

        Here is a test you can try. Stop eating for 48 hours and consume only water. If you experience headaches, nausea, weakness, back pain, stomach pain, etc., then your body is badly in need of a detox. A high raw diet for several months followed by a medically supervised fast will significantly eliminate most of the toxins in your body. Fasting should give you a sense of lightness and euphoria. After you detox, you will have more energy when you fast, not less.

        There is a lot of bogus information. I can show you studies that show olive oil is better for ones health. However, if one looks at the participants, it shows a very homogenous sampling. All the participants consumed a Standard American Diet loaded with saturated fat. When olive oil was substituted in place of butter, the level of saturated fat was lowered and their health markers showed improvement. However, if a person who eats a whole-foods plant-based diet were to consume the same amount of olive oil, their health markers would show a decline in health. This means that olive oil is not healthy, but it is less un healthy than butter and other saturated fats.

        I read dozens of studies a weak and most use such pseudo-science to reach a predetermined conclusion. The studies are created from the conclusion forward and the use of a homogenous sampling of participants gave the data they were seeking. Of course the data is still valid, but when you combine the data with dozens of other studies, you see that the conclusion has no basis in science. Anyone who makes a determination of fact based on a single study, or even a small number of studies simply does not understand science and the proper method to reach conclusion with high probabilities. I can tell you for a fact that 100% of people with belly buttons will die. Does that mean if you remove your belly button you will live forever? This type of univariate correlation is used all the time to reach conclusions about nutrition and is at best pseudo-science, and at worst fraudulent.

  32. robertwolf681 says:

    I'm on a vegan diet. I only eat vegans.

  33. […] people’s anger, sadness, grief or unease was my problem, especially if I was seemingly the cause. Overwhelming […]

  34. (veg)Ann says:

    Those who bother to volunteer their time to contribute to a community, even those who stick their necks out to defend those who can’t defend themselves, are easy targets of cowardly pariah bullies, who hide behind fake names to commit slander.  Unfortunately, even the vegan community has their share of pariahs.

    “Take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”  –Elie Wiesel

  35. hulya Johnson says:

    I am a Vegan because I don't eat flesh or cause any harm to my friends..
    Being Vegan is the single best thing we can do for the Planet ,our Health and for the planet.
    Until we have a understanding about whats right and wrong there will not be a peace in the world or withing us.
    Being Vegan is the not only best choice but doing right by all Animals.
    Wake up and what you eat affects other living beings and the Universe we share.

    • Andreas says:

      So are you saying that non-vegans all hurt their friends? Please say no, because wacky statements like that is what gives all vegans and vegetarians a bad name.

  36. AhimsaYogi says:

    Where the heck are you eating out that you only get to eat salads and fruit? I'm vegan and eat out a lot…more than I should (twice today)…and I rarely get stuck with "just a salad"

  37. […] Step 5: Remind everyone that you’re vegan every few minutes and sulk in the corner with a carrot. […]

  38. ArtSem says:

    Don't kid yourself into believing that plants are not living creatures too. The brutal fact of life is that it lives on itself. Life lives on life. There is no way to avoid it, no matter how Vegan we all become. Admittedly, it may be healthier, though.

  39. Rachel Ryan says:

    Sorry but this article was poorly written and poorly edited. How is any reader supposed to digest such nonsense?

  40. Cheryl says:

    I'm not quite sure that the tongue in cheek sarcasm was picked up here, but it totally made the points that it was written to make. Thanks!

  41. […] conscious culinaire. These eleven items will make your life easier, your meals tastier, and your non-vegan guests happier while keeping your conscience crystal […]

  42. Christopher Dailey says:

    The Dalai Lama eats meat as do most Tibetans, i guess you are better than they are as well, your vanity is your down fall, enjoy your many more times on the wheel of reincarnation, may the blessings be.

  43. Tara says:

    Well written, thanks for saying it, as it is.

  44. Ms Mermaid says:

    OMG! Lighten up people… There is so much angst in the world…. eat meat or don't eat meat… Just leave it a personal choice! Bitch about something else like Chemtrails, or the BP OIL Spill, or the fact that Monsanto is a bug huge creepy company that is killing us all….. Geez……

  45. Eilan Wilder says:

    Lots of great commentary….far more interesting than the original article. Wow., I want to say that my meat eating (and hunting because he despises buying meat in a store grass fed in Whole Foods or anywhere, not because of the plastic, saran wrap and all the other multitude of basic intelligent reasons but because he can not stomache that some one else had to do the dirty work of the killing for him) husband just went on a 30 day cleans. He has lost 17 pounds, is completely glowing and this cleanse has changed his energy (now abundant) his mind (so much happier and cracking jokes all day long) and he is truly glowing! Meat does not look the same to him as before but he says he will still occasionally eat some if he hears the call. I have always preferred a veggie lifestyle and do not eat mammals. The occasional wild salmon and some fowl here and there. Mostly to be polite at other peoples houses. As some one who has nursed my young I feel that the conscious connection that it creates must be in animals too. I do not judge anyone who choses to eat animals but like most of us who read this type of publication likely do too. Back to being polite. This is where I would like to make my point. In a perfect world hundreds and thousands of years ago I might have eaten similarly to how I do now. I wish i could say the same about most westerners. Unfortunately the processed/gmo/animal cruelty/SAD diet is everywhere. Let's keep fighting for all the better and more humane ways to improve our degradation of the human diet! I have raised my 4 children to believe the McDonalds is a dirty word. They know that on all the levels that it is. Raised in Boulder Colorado they are also unfortunately in some respects exposed to and have a little bit taken on some food snobbery. We talk about this and a major part of our parenting has been focused on manners. Manners in this world are here for extremely important reasons. The main one is to make others feel comfortable. I tell my kids that good manners will open far many more doors to them in life than good grades. Here's the point… I know what a strict diet can create. One one side it can improve ones health when needed, it can lessen certain impacts on our earth (eating locally etc…) but on the other side it can be isolating, rigid, hard on the mind, and it can pose awkward social situations. Manners plays in this comment because if myself or my children were to travel outside our immediate word (out of Boulder and into the "unreal" food world) and if we were rigid and food snobs and heavily limited to what we will or will not eat, we could make other people feel bad. Imagine traveling to a third world country and being invited into some extremely poor persons home/shack/tent/ and out of their extraordinary kindness were offered some yak milk/dried beef/bread/weird looking seafood etc…I would never want to be so attached to my "special" diet to refuse an incredible offering and insult someone! My children are trained to never be so arrogant to do that either! And let me say this, I have Celiacs disease but I would rather eat a bite or two of gluten than make someone feel uncomfortable in their own home. My tummy ache will pass in a few days and it will be worth it because my heart will be at peace. Guess what? We are all eating each other! Ask any pregnant woman how it feel to give so much life force and nourishment to grow a baby, even giving them the calcium from your teeth. Look at soil,made from bacteria, organisms, animals, humans all decomposing so that another many have it's turn to thrive. Rigid concepts are the problem here. Fundamentalism about food, religion, education, politics, any of it is imbalanced and we all should do what we can and what we would ideally like most of the time but leave a little room to break your own rules in any given situation so that you can move through this world in grace, kindness and love, and have others feel good. I wish we did not all eat each other but that seem to be how it is. I think our attitudes and thoughts are more powerful here than all the concepts and some times we just have to transcend our selves.

  46. annabel says:

    THANK YOU!!!

    It’s so important to get these conversations going!!!

    Love your work waylon.

    Cheers from Sydney

  47. Noelle says:

    Thanks Waylon! we all need to make fun of ourselves. In my personal experience as a vegan, working with and hanging out with a lot of vegans I have found that we can be a bit uptight amongst other things and some times that scares people off

    Check this out–I think you'll enjoy it http://www.carpevegan.com/?page_id=352

    Keep up the good fight–you're awesome!

  48. Fishwig says:

    Are you kidding me? First, you are not funny. Second, you are a hypocritical evangelical ass……! Way to get people on your "side"……

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