A recent article in the Metro praised the idea of selective veganism. That is, being vegan apart from certain situations, where you may consume dairy or eggs. These situations include eating out with friends, when presented with cake at work, or to avoid the ‘why aren’t you eating that’ question.
Of course, if everyone in the world was vegan 95% of the time, the world would be a much better place. However, that doesn’t make diverging from your ethics OK. The most frustrating thing about this article, are the authors reasoning behind consuming dairy products.
Examples of why she might eat egg or dairy include ‘It’s a swift way to shut down the vegan haters, You don’t have to turn down free food, and You don’t sap all the joy out of eating’. The logical reasoning behind these excuses honestly baffled me.
Honestly, the effort of having to turn away free food is honestly that much of a deal to you? You’re ethical, but as soon as someone gives you something for free, that just goes out the window? Strangely, I’ve been vegan well over a year now and no-one finds it offensive or rude if I don’t eat dairy or eggs that they offer me. ‘Plus free food tastes better’ is not a good enough excuse to act unethically.
Selective veganism is completely unnecessary. Of course if everyone lived like this it would be a huge improvement, however this is not what the author is suggesting. The author simply tries to make excuses for her occasional Halloumi eating and inability to be vegan in social situations.
It’s like saying that you understand the horrors of racism, homophobia, misogyny and xenophobia, yet voting for Trump because your friends do it or it’s the ‘easy’ thing to do.
Being vegan literally doesn’t affect my social life in any way shape or form. I might have to suffer through a few bland meals when I eat out every now and again, but so what? If you dedicate to this lifestyle 95% of the time, why let your ethics slip for something as meaningless as getting your ‘friends’ approval?
Even by only eating dairy and eggs on occasion, you still contribute to the agonising suffering of animals. They don’t care that you only do it sometimes, especially as it’s so avoidable. You show restaurants and co-workers that veganism is something now to be taken seriously, as you disregard it, so why shouldn’t they?
Selective veganism is great if you’re brand new to veganism, but not if you’re simply lazy or can’t be arsed to be vegan in public. Eating dairy simply to ‘avoid an awkward situation’ is not okay, and is utterly unnecessary.