Be Fair, Be Vegan: A Powerful Campaign Tells the Truth

People who adjust their dietary choices for ethical reasons are most often vegetarians or vegans.

But as I’ve pointed out in previous articles, vegetarianism supports animal cruelty and oppression.

Vegetarians want to consume dairy, and some consume eggs.

So they aren’t happy when I explain that dairy products come from mechanical rape of a female cow, the cow’s baby being stolen from it, and the cow’s breasts (udders) being roughly handled to steal the animal’s milk for use by humans.

I ask vegetarians how they’d feel if cows or humans corralled human females and did to them what’s done to cows so that human milk was used as a commercial food.

I ask them how they’d feel if other animals harvested and ate human eggs.

The stark fact is humans are brainwashed from the day we’re born into believing that we’re the only species that really matters, so we have the right to do whatever we want to all other species and the earth itself.

Vegan animal rights activists are part of the very small fraction of humans who do authentic personal and public work against the human dominance and abuse of other species and the planet.

By refusing to consume any products derived from animal harm, we do what we can on an individual level to reduce the harm we cause to other beings.

It’s so very hard to get non-vegan people to see other animals as “persons” who have feelings, memories, social groups, language, intellect, and rights.

The concept of being fair to other animals challenges people’s way of life and their core beliefs.

That’s why I’m glad whenever I see a marketing-savvy, media-savvy approach to educating people about animal rights, animal sentience, and veganism.

Effective, creative, and compelling pro-vegan media activists created a campaign called Be Fair Be Vegan.

Using the most modern public media such as electronic and static billboards in New York’s Times Square, Be Fair Be Vegan points out that animals are people too.

Be Fair Be Vegan media work uses photos of animals, and rhetorical questions, that dismantle people’s defense mechanisms and allow them to see how badly our species treats other animals.

When people see Be Fair Be Vegan materials, their core paradigms are immediately challenged as they’re confronted with the scientific fact that humans and other animals share significantly uniform psychological, social, genetic, and biological characteristics.

Most humans believe that only humans and their pets have feelings, family, intrinsic value, and rights.

Most people believe that animals used for food, vivisection, and entertainment are “living machines” that can be harmed and used without any concern about inherent cruelty and brutality.

Be Fair Be Vegan directly confronts these core delusions by showing that animals have personalities and want to live without being persecuted, oppressed, and murdered.

Their campaign and website explicitly call out the lack of logic, empathy, scientific factualness, ethics, and intellectual consistency that allows people to believe myths such as “humane farming.”

The campaign explains that when you enslave other living beings, it doesn’t matter much if they’re enslaved with less abuse than in some other enslavement venue– such as free range versus caged.

Slavery is slavery.

As a deep ecologist and environmentalist, I appreciate how Be Fair Be Vegan ties non-vegan lifestyles to the destruction of the biosphere.

At present, human population and consumption growth is on track to extinct the entire biosphere.

We’ve become a mass extinction event. Nature itself is being slaughtered. The following video shows the reality of what we do…

The Be Fair Be Vegan website points out that the average non-vegan is responsible for the consumption of 356 animal lives, 401,500 gallons of water, 10,950 square feet of rain forest, 14,600 pounds of grain every year.

And the generation of 7,300 pounds of Co2 every year.

The industrial agriculture grid that supports our unsustainable population numbers is one of the main drivers of climate change, habitat loss, and animal abuse.

Be Fair Be Vegan is probably the most honest and savvy vegan marketing I’ve seen.

Unlike PETA, which often uses questionably salacious and needlessly controversial counterproductive media tactics, Be Fair Be Vegan is precise, solid, and appeals to ethics and the heart.

I highly recommend that all Vegan Samurai provide donations and other assistance to Be Fair Be Vegan.

They’ve gained the support of famous people like actor Joaquin Phoenix, and they deserve everyone’s support.

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Living Vegan in the Death Culture

I went to a non-vegan restaurant with friends and was reminded how challenging it is to live vegan in a society founded on animal abuse and the psychological mechanisms that facilitate it.

The three people I had dinner with are all “good” people… a married couple who both had eminently statured careers in academia, and an engineer.

They’re interesting, personable, friendly people whom I respect and care about.

The restaurant was classy, full of diners. The interior had attractive aesthetics.

But I felt uncomfortable because my companions are non-vegans who ordered meals containing cut-up animal parts.

I haven’t seen non-vegan food for a while. It made me sick to see other animals’ breasts and other body parts on a plate.

I studied the menu trying to find vegan options. Out of approximately 25 main entrees or side orders, only two appeared to be vegan.

I asked the waitress if there were any animal products in the items and she said there were not.

My companions questioned me about being vegan. Why  had I done it? What about protein deficiency? Did I miss non-vegan food?

I recommended they read VeganSamurai.org for a full explanation of why I went vegan, but that the short answer is, veganism is the only dietary system that’s good for personal health, environmental health, and animal health.

And that’s when my companions’ cognitive dissonance, deliberate unknowing, and moral evasion became very apparent.

They agreed that veganism is the morally defensible dietary paradigm.

But they cavalierly talked continuing to eat meat, fish, eggs, and dairy even though the animal food industry, and animal foods themselves, are harmful to animals, Nature, and people.

Not only that, one of my companions is severely overweight because of his dietary choices, and suffers greatly because of it.

In an ironic moment, he talked about his addiction to foods that were killing him… as he ate foods that were killing him.

It was if I’d been sitting in a restaurant with companions who casually admitted they were shareholders in or employees of a company that committed genocide or other horrors.

It reminded me of a conversation I had with a self-described “pacifist and anti-war activist” who worked for a military contractor making weapons of war.

I recalled the book and videos by Dr. Melanie Joy who explains that carnism–the belief system that supports the eating of animals– creates moral deadening, denial, and self-delusion.

When my beet salad and veggie burger main course arrived, I looked at them carefully to see if there were any animal components.

I couldn’t see or taste any, but to my dismay, at the end of the meal when I was asking if there were vegan desserts, the waitress told me my salad had had cheese in it.

This explained the queasy, heavy feeling I’d started to experience as soon as I ate the salad.

And I mused to myself that if there was a Church of the Vegan Samurai, I’d have to go to confession and tell the priest, “I need forgiveness, for I’ve eaten foods produced by harming cows,” and seek absolution.

But as of  yet, there is no Church of the Vegan Samurai.

I was left to feel guilt about my inadvertent “cheese sin,” and the incongruous experience of communing with nice people I care about… except they’re willing participants in the violent, dominant culture of speciesism and carnism.

To put it bluntly, my friends support the animal-killing system that to me represents the greatest moral failing of our species.

All of us who truly care about animals realize that living vegan in a death culture means we’re often forced to compromise, camouflage, and “be quiet” when we’re with people who participate in carnism.

We love our family, lovers, friends. We want to “get along” with people.

We don’t want to dislike people for the deliberate, needless sins they commit against innocent animals and the environment.

We grieve for the obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and other maladies they create for themselves because they eat animal foods and processed foods.

Vegans are the dismayed witnesses to the core immorality that animal-eating represents.

Other than the animal victims themselves, vegans are the only people who viscerally recognize we live in a world dominated by carnistic people and systems that create massive harms and suffering.

This is yet another reason I created the Vegan Samurai concept.

A samurai is a warrior who works hard to stay strong and resolute no matter what battles are looming.

A Vegan Samurai is often alone in a cruel world, surrounded by carnistic people who participate in the genocide against animals.

All you have are your vegan ethics, honor, principles, and strength as antidote to the heartbreak of being part of the only species that enslaves billions of innocent animals, destroys its own health, and trashes the earth.

Who Does the Vegan Samurai Protect?

As you become familiar with the Vegan Samurai warrior code, it’s useful to remember that original ancient samurai were sworn warriors who served the most powerful individuals or social organizations, such as emperors or clans.

This was centuries ago. Crucial differences between today’s vegan samurai and ancient samurai are that a Vegan Samurai isn’t sworn to serve a patriarch, emperor, or military commander.

Nor does a Vegan Samurai use an arsenal of deadly weapons and other martial arts to fight actual physical battles.

So why do I say a vegan samurai is a warrior, and on whose behalf does the vegan samurai fight?

I became a vegan samurai after seeing “undercover” videos and photographs taken at facilities where animals are raised, entrapped, killed, or processed for food, for animal experimentation, or for animal entertainment.

I could relate to the helplessness and suffering of these animals because as a child I was a victim of violent bullying that resulted in physical injury.

I still vividly remember how it felt to be powerless, small, hemmed-in, attacked by cruel humans.

Classmates and even some adults stood back passively while I was attacked.

I cried out for help, but witnesses turned away and left me to suffer alone.

Later on, when my parents reported the incidents to school administrators and even the police, none of the witnesses had the courage to come forward to identify the bullies.

When I saw animal abuse videos and photographs, I immediately identified with the animals, and wanted to be their protector and defender.

Giving voice to the voiceless and defense to the defenseless is a saying I’ve heard and repeated as I’ve gotten more into animal liberation and animal rights.

People with conscience rush to the aid of someone who’s being victimized, especially if the victim is clearly unable to escape or fight back.

So when I decided to give up my weak attempts to be a vegetarian eating mostly organic foods from health stores and take the plunge by going 100% vegan, my resoluteness was bolstered by my desire to protect and defend animals.

The original samurai used martial arts hand-to-hand fighting, along with samurai swords and other war hardware.

They faced extreme physical danger as a matter of honor, and in service to their emperor or other master.

Vegan samurai don’t fight that way. We use words, ideas, images, political lobbying, and lifestyle choices on behalf of animals.

We do face danger and staunch opposition because we’re vegan, but it’s usually not physical danger.

It’s the danger of being an empathic, morals-focused person defending a group of exploited beings in a society that generally scoffs at morals, empathy, and the rights of non-human animals.

In some cases, a vegan faces subtle or overt forms of social ostracism or logistical exclusion.

Vegan travelers, especially in air travel systems or hotels, often find it impossible to source a wide range of vegan food items.

In some families, marriages, or workplaces, vegans are viewed with suspicion, scorn, or even hostility.

We’re tagged as being “scolds,” “judgmental,” “OCD,” “food cops,” party poopers or weirdoes because we refuse to be customers of those who exploit and harm animals.

In fact, vegans are relentlessly slagged on YouTube and in other media venues, and are often subjected to harassment when they make a stand on behalf of innocent animals.

This  may sound blunt or harsh, but people who deliberately harm innocent animals, or whose dietary choices support such harms, could well be described as enemies of those animals.

Given that those animals are the beings I fight for, I see being a vegan means I’m participating in an epic battle between good and evil.

How else can you describe a battle in which your opponents just don’t care that they’re inflicting terrible suffering on other beings?

A vegan samurai also fights internal battles.

We struggle with our own food desires. For example, I was raised eating meat, dairy, fish, and eggs.

When I’m hungry after exercising, and walking past steakhouses and other animal-exploiting food businesses that export their cooking smells into the air, I sometimes feel intense craving for animal-derived foods.

I feel like an alcoholic sworn to never take another drink again, lest I fall off the wagon and lose the battle with alcoholism.

But I won’t give in to those food cravings. I owe it to the animals to stay true to my vegan samurai code.

The main thing to remember is that the vegan samurai’s honor code includes this tenet:

I’ll always stay true to my vegan principles, because I’m defending those who can’t defend themselves.