Hi, folks! I hope you’ve been finding much joy in your lives lately. Today I want to offer you a rather short post, one that summarizes the “bottom line,” if you will, of my actions and beliefs surrounding other animals. I felt compelled to write this because I’ve become increasingly tired of entertaining what I feel are nit-picky arguments against vegan consumption practices and granting other animals moral consideration.
Honestly, I could care less whether some beekeepers have figured out how to steal honey without stressing out the bees, whether oysters and jellyfish can feel pain, whether farmed animals are “smarter” than dogs, etc. I’m still not going to eat or otherwise exploit bees for their honey, oysters, jellyfish, or farmed animals.
Why? Because the reason why I engage in vegan consumption practices comes from a commitment to interrogating the dominant, violent beliefs and ideologies surrounding other animals that I’ve internalized since childhood. My veganism is really just one manifestation of the responsibility I feel as a person of racial, class, ability, and species privilege to challenge the systemic violence committed against those with less of such privileges than me.
So, when asked why I don’t eat honey, oysters, jellyfish, etc., I’m not going to make arguments about sentience or pain or what bees use honey for. What I really care about is whether my actions surrounding other animals contribute to, further condition, and uphold the speciesist mindset that I’m actively trying to work against. Yeah, I could eat honey if all I cared about was the fact that some beekeepers raise bees in environmentally sustainable ways blah blah blah. But I’m not going to, because doing so would simply reinforce my ingrained beliefs of human superiority over other animals. That’s the bottom line.
In solidarity, Ali.