Could Someone Explain This? (what is a flexitarian) - Page 4 - VeggieBoards
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#91 Old 07-19-2006, 09:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Moechalatte View Post

flexitarian = someone who can't commit to a diet they think is right.



I find this insulting in the extreme. I have committed to the diet I think is right - it's just not the same diet as yours.



There are lots of people who don't define right and wrong from an animal rights perspective. You may disagree with those other approaches to ethics, but you won't persuade many of us if you begin by assuming that we want to be just like you, but lack the moral character to do so.



Regarding commitment - although many vegetarians do see their diet as a commitment, it is not an integral part of what it means to be a vegetarian. "Vegetarian" refers just to the diet - it doesn't say anything about reasons. If a group of people live in some remote area where there are no animals to eat, and subsist entirely on plant foods, they are vegetarian, even if there is no conscious choice involved at all.



I think the conversation has been distorted by the original quoted web site, which was written in a kind of silly, flippant way. Near-vegetarians like myself do not just go down the buffet line heaping their plates full of meat. Whenever someone is cooking for me, I ask them to prepare vegetarian food exclusively. Whenever I am at a restaurant, I will order vegetarian dishes in preference to dishes containing meat. I make only vegetarian food for myself at home.



I like the suggestion that a vegetarian is someone whose consumption of vegetarian food is "habitual"; that fits me quite well. I don't regard a few servings of fish or seafood over the course of a year as radically changing the overall character of my diet. I realize that those coming from the AR angle of course do see this as a profound and complete departure from vegetarianism. But that is only one perspective.



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#92 Old 07-19-2006, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Seusomon View Post

If a group of people live in some remote area where there are no animals to eat, and subsist entirely on plant foods, they are vegetarian, even if there is no conscious choice involved at all.

As compelling as I find this argument, I find it equally absurd to say "in the old days, criminals used to become strict vegetarians after they were sent to prison" because they weren't fed animal products.

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#93 Old 07-19-2006, 12:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Sevenseas View Post

As compelling as I find this argument, I find it equally absurd to say "in the old days, criminals used to become strict vegetarians after they were sent to prison" because they weren't fed animal products.



Agreed - but it's all in the wording, isn't it? a phrase like "become strict vegetarians" carries a strong connotation of choice that clashes with the situation being described. "In the old days, prisoners were denied animal products and made to subsist on a strictly vegetarian diet" doesn't sound so odd.
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#94 Old 07-19-2006, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Seusomon View Post

Agreed - but it's all in the wording, isn't it? a phrase like "become strict vegetarians" carries a strong connotation of choice that clashes with the situation being described. "In the old days, prisoners were denied animal products and made to subsist on a strictly vegetarian diet" doesn't sound so odd.



But if once a year they had a turkey dinner you could no longer state they were made to subsist on a strictly vegetarian diet.

I guess this has been beaten to death. I just don't get the need for a label when you eat a normal diet. You don't need to explain your diet to people if you eat what they eat, even occasionally. If you eat meat sometimes it's not really much of a stretch to eat meat whenever.

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#95 Old 07-19-2006, 12:36 PM
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Well I would agree that those prisoners have a vegetarian diet (because of external circumstances) but not that they're vegetarians. In the online Merriam-Webster dictionary we see as the first definition of 'vegetarian' (noun): one who believes in or practices vegetarianism. Both "believing in" and "practicing" to me imply an element of commitment.

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#96 Old 07-19-2006, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by MaryC1999 View Post

I just don't get the need for a label when you eat a normal diet. You don't need to explain your diet to people if you eat what they eat, even occasionally. If you eat meat sometimes it's not really much of a stretch to eat meat whenever.

Mary

Flexitarians use that label for the exact same reasons that vegetarians use their own label. Because you don't want to be served meat. I really don't see what's so hard to understand.
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#97 Old 07-19-2006, 01:59 PM
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Then they could say, "I'd like a vegetarian meal." I wouldn't know what to serve a self-proclaimed "flexitarian." Because they might want meat this time, they might not. I think it comes down to usefulness - I don't really see the utility of the word. The flexitarian is deciding meal by meal, so they can ask for the meal they want at that time. The vegetarian you know not to serve them flesh.

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#98 Old 07-19-2006, 02:08 PM
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Flexitarian= vegetarian wannabe, saddled by lack of commitment, and willpower.
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#99 Old 07-19-2006, 02:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Irizary View Post

I wouldn't know what to serve a self-proclaimed "flexitarian." Because they might want meat this time, they might not.

I think the most probable reason for not knowing what to serve one would be that the host has never heard of such a weird made up term. The only reason I know what the hell a "flexitarian" is is that I've read veg*n boards. The word doesn't even have a correlate in my native language.

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#100 Old 07-19-2006, 02:12 PM
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Originally Posted by MaryC1999 View Post

I just don't get the need for a label when you eat a normal diet. You don't need to explain your diet to people if you eat what they eat, even occasionally. If you eat meat sometimes it's not really much of a stretch to eat meat whenever.

Mary



I disagree. I think true flexitarianism is different, at least if you adhere to a strict definition of vegetarianism (i.e., if you eat meat EVER, no matter how infequently, you're not vegetarian).



Most flexitarians I know avoid meat. Few cook it in their own homes. However, when faced with a choice between offending a friend/family and eating meat, they'll opt to do the latter. Eating meat a few times a day because of personal preference (normal omni diet) and eating meat a few times a year out of perceived obligation/duress (flexitarian diet) are far different things in my book. So I can certainly understand why they'd want their own term to clarify the distinction between the two....



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#101 Old 07-19-2006, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Irizary View Post

Then they could say, "I'd like a vegetarian meal."



Perhaps. But then all the vegetarians in the room would complain that he/she was *******izing their word. Besides, it's not as if most people know what to serve vegetarians or vegans (a term I think we'd all agree was valid) anyway.



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#102 Old 07-19-2006, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by pinkrokker View Post

Perhaps. But then all the vegetarians in the room would complain that he/she was *******izing their word.

No, they wouldn't. "A vegetarian meal" is perfectly unproblematic language, and anyone can use that expression.

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#103 Old 07-19-2006, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by OregonAmy View Post

That's the question. So answer it.



Ah, okay. I answered it before he even asked it. Now that is pretty sad.



https://www.veggieboards.com/boards/s...4&postcount=27







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#104 Old 07-19-2006, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Irizary View Post

Then they could say, "I'd like a vegetarian meal." I wouldn't know what to serve a self-proclaimed "flexitarian." Because they might want meat this time, they might not. I think it comes down to usefulness - I don't really see the utility of the word. The flexitarian is deciding meal by meal, so they can ask for the meal they want at that time. The vegetarian you know not to serve them flesh.



Most people in this category, I think, would prefer good vegetarian meals all the time. But they are flexible in the sense of not requiring it. The term, or some other term that conveys the same thing, is in fact quite useful, as it describes the diet of a large number of people, and conveys what they prefer to eat and also how they react if their preference is not available.



BTW, saying self-proclaimed "flexitarian" sounds like a sneering put-down. Would you like to be called a self-proclaimed "vegetarian" by an omni?



I don't care for the term myself (as I said, I prefer "near vegetarian"), but I don't know why anyone should object to someone else using it for themselves, if they fit the definition.
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#105 Old 07-19-2006, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Vegan Joe View Post

Flexitarian= vegetarian wannabe, saddled by lack of commitment, and willpower.

I take you didn't read a word of this thread.
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#106 Old 07-19-2006, 02:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Sevenseas View Post

No, they wouldn't. "A vegetarian meal" is perfectly unproblematic language, and anyone can use that expression.



Sadly, that hasn't always been my experience. But I agree, that should be unproblematic language.



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#107 Old 07-19-2006, 02:36 PM
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I'm a flexi-rawfruitarian, I eat an apple once in a while.
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#108 Old 07-19-2006, 02:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkrokker View Post

Sadly, that hasn't always been my experience.

Ah. Well, those vegetarians sound pretty dumb .

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made of weak and useless men"

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