What's your best (short) answer to "why are you a vegetarian"? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 05-27-2011, 02:47 PM
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Hi guys,

I'd love to know what you reply to people who ask you "why are you a vegetarian?". And by people I mean people who are not vegetarian and who, just by the sound of their voice when they ask the question, already consider you as a weird hippie who just wants to spoil the evening. lol I'm kidding I'm being harsh, I don't meet a lot of veggie haters to be honest.

But the thing is, when strangers ask me this (like we're at the same table at a wedding.. btw, I'm going to a wedding in 2 weeks) I always come up with the complicated answer or it takes me several seconds to answer (which does scare people) and I end up saying how compassionate I am with other species and the fact that I don't think we have the right to treat animals the way we do, that we don't need to eat animals to be healthy ect.

I'd like to have a clear answer to give but there are just so many reasons and I don't want people to think it's only for health reasons.

Your 2 cents are welcome!!



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#2 Old 05-27-2011, 03:40 PM
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Most often when I think someone isnt being sincere about the question I respond,"because not being vegetarian/vegan doesnt make sense to me" and leave it at that. It's not a complete response but I'll usually find out if they are really interested if they ask me more about it. I try to stay away from topic in large public/family events because I feel it's better as a personal conversation with fewer people.
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#3 Old 05-27-2011, 04:25 PM
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I say that it seems like a best decision because it is healthy and doesn`t cause suffering of animals
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#4 Old 05-27-2011, 04:43 PM
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I used to say "for the animals", now I say "Because the way we produce meat is ecologically unsustainable."

While I really became a vegetarian for the former, I feel the latter is a bit more firm, and it gives me something objective to talk about.
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#5 Old 05-27-2011, 05:11 PM
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I always say "Because I feel like it's unnecessary to kill animals when I can get all my necessary nutrients without something dying."
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#6 Old 05-27-2011, 07:03 PM
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cause I love animals and dont want to eat them.....


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#7 Old 05-27-2011, 07:05 PM
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I say "For me, animals, and our planet, Questions?"

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#8 Old 05-27-2011, 07:07 PM
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Originally Posted by imdead-goaway View Post

I used to say "for the animals", now I say "Because the way we produce meat is ecologically unsustainable."

While I really became a vegetarian for the former, I feel the latter is a bit more firm, and it gives me something objective to talk about.

I agree. Something can be based even more firmly on scary facts, because for some reason "they feel pain too" doesn't connect as much as "We're all going to die"

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#9 Old 05-27-2011, 08:14 PM
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I care about the planet, I care about my being, and I care about other beings. It's a curt answer but I've found out the hard way (soooooo many times) if you try and give a lengthy answer they usually get super defensive and try and have an illogical debate with you about it. (even though they asked in the first place.) oh well.

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#10 Old 05-27-2011, 08:17 PM
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i care about animals and i don't want to contribute to their suffering.
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#11 Old 05-27-2011, 08:35 PM
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Because modern meat consumption is done for pleasure, not necessity. Killing for pleasure is against the code I choose to live by.

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#12 Old 05-27-2011, 09:35 PM
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Hardly anyone asks except relatives now and then, and nearly all of them are Catholic. I tell them I'm offering it up for the poor souls in Purgatory.
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#13 Old 05-27-2011, 09:42 PM
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To people that are kind and genuinely curious, I just say, "For the animals", because I don't want to go too deep in my feelings because I don't want to sound like I'm talking down to them. If someone is just being mean and rude, though, I'll say, "Because I won't be a murderer".
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#14 Old 05-27-2011, 09:59 PM
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"Why aren't you?"
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#15 Old 05-27-2011, 10:06 PM
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"Because their life is just as important to them as my life is to me, and nobody has the right to end a life."
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#16 Old 05-27-2011, 10:22 PM
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So far, when someone asks why I'm vegetarian, they seem to follow it up immediately with, "For health reasons?"

Since I've yet to have a stranger ask me, I usually give as much as the whole story as possible: I believe that our modern methods of farming and slaughter are inhumane and disgusting hygienically and morally. This makes it impossible for me to eat meat in good conscience.

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#17 Old 05-27-2011, 10:50 PM
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Whenever I'm asked, I say "Do you want the long version or the short version?". My short version is "because I want to be one" (can you tell I'm tired of being asked? haha) and my long version involves how it happened and what it means to me. I figure I'd rather give the person the choice because most people seem to just be gearing up for a debate, which I am sooo not into.
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#18 Old 05-27-2011, 11:39 PM
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cuz i been one fer 25 years and i'm old and set in my ways.
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#19 Old 05-27-2011, 11:41 PM
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I usually just say some variation on: "I love animals, I don't need animal products, I feel way better without them." It's nice and short and non-confrontational. If the person asks for details or gets hostile about it I get more informative

"If we could live happy and healthy lives without harming others... why wouldn't we?" - Edgars Mission
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#20 Old 05-27-2011, 11:57 PM
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I wouldn't pay anyone to do something I wouldn't be morally willing to do myself.
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#21 Old 05-27-2011, 11:57 PM
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I tend to say something different every time I'm asked... Sometimes I'm serious, sometimes I'm not. Depends who I'm talking to. *shrug*

A few things that have come out of my mouth...

Why am I vegan? Well, BECAUSE:

"Being hungry isn't an excuse to kill or torture an animal."

"I HATE vegetables. I want them all dead. If I took even one bite of meat, that would mean a carrot is free to live another day. I won't stand for that."

"Slicing a kitten's throat to eat it would be really unnecessary and douchey, right? Well, I happen to think it's just as unnecessary and douchey to do to a chicken or a cow."

"My other option is to eat decaying flesh and drink breast milk from cows."

"I lost a bet."

"I can read and comprehend basic math."

"I am quite fond of a number of children on this planet, so I figured I might as well stop destroying it with my lunch."

"I'm awesome."
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#22 Old 05-28-2011, 12:06 AM
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Semicharmed, I like your answers
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#23 Old 05-28-2011, 02:57 AM
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"personal ethical choice". Short, to the point, and if they want to know more they can ask questions, and anything I say from that point on that bothers them is pretty much their fault for asking.

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#24 Old 05-28-2011, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Semicharmed View Post

"I lost a bet."

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#25 Old 05-28-2011, 01:27 PM
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wow thank you all for your awesome replies!

Love them all! That really helps, now I know what I'm gonna answer next time I'm asked.
You're right, it actually depends on who's asking. We can quickly see if a person is asking out of curiosity or just to be polite or to get into a sterile debate...
I like the idea of giving people the choice of hearing the long or short version!

I totally understand those of you who are tired of answering this question and having to justify something that is (or has become) completely natural to us and part of who we are. But I think we should always see this question as an opportunity to "educate" people about this and make them think and we never know, maybe we'll convince someone! I became vegetarian partly thanks to a vegetarian girl who answered my questions and convinced me!

I believe that even if people don't feel a strong compassion for other species, they can follow a simple and logical reasoning that can lead to the decision of becoming vegetarian, especially when we emphasize the fact that we don't need to eat animals to be healthy and that eating meat is actually unhealthy and can be dangerous!

Thx again!!


PS: "I lost a bet" LOL!
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#26 Old 05-29-2011, 01:15 PM
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im a peaceful entity and do not believe in killing.
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#27 Old 05-29-2011, 01:32 PM
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because vegetables is a longer word than meat.

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#28 Old 05-29-2011, 02:54 PM
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I say that it is b/c I prefer not eating meat. People usually don't ask beyond that. It seems like most people ask b/c they want to challenge me and get into a protracted discussion about it where they feel the need to defend their meat eating by trying to put me on the defensive about not eating it. If this is the feeling I get about someone, then I say that and shut them down. If someone really seems to care, then I will go into a longer explanation, tell them about The China Study, animal cruelty, etc... While I love to educate others, most I have run into do not care about being educated. They care about defending their way of life.
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#29 Old 05-29-2011, 03:06 PM
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I usually just tell people I don't like to eat animals. If they prod me enough, (or if they seem genuinely interested in my reasoning) I'll tell them I felt like a hypocrite for loving dogs so much while being fine with eating other animals.

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#30 Old 05-29-2011, 05:24 PM
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I'm actually not asked this very often as I usually make a very small deal out of my vegetarism, but most of the time I explain that I find it really irrational how some animals are allowed to live while some are not. Although I usually try to change the topic beyond this point, most people seem to be able to grasp this answer.
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