Do you think it's hypocritical to be a vegetarian and wear leather? - Page 3 - VeggieBoards
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#61 Old 06-26-2011, 03:35 PM
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depending on your needs of a vehicle you may not be able to buy from other companies. my parent's businesses require SUV's or trucks and no cloth in those.

i shop on zappos all the time and never thought to search for them on there. i just did and saw one pair that i'll probably ask for, other than that i didn't like the selection much. my leather shows last a while i guess. i don't buy ones that cost like a thousand dollars and take them to the shop every month or anything. i just rotate so much that they don't get worn a lot.
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#62 Old 06-26-2011, 06:24 PM
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shoes are overrated

True. Barefoot is far more comfortable. This is the next best thing.

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#63 Old 06-28-2011, 05:05 AM
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If you're a vegetarian for moral reasons then, yes, it is hypocritical, but then, so is eating dairy products. If health reasons are the major factor for you then, no, it isn't.

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i don't think it's hypocritical unless you go around telling everyone else how wrong it is for them to do it. isn't that what being a hypocrite is?

No. A hypocrite is someone whose actions bely their stated beliefs. Thus, it is hypocritical to talk about being a vegetarian for the animals, or using the phrase "I don't want animals to die for me", and then supporting the dairy industry. If, on the other hand, you are vegetarian for health reasons, then it is not hypocritical to use other animal products.

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#64 Old 06-28-2011, 08:13 AM
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I'm curious. In your opinion, can actual vegans wear their old leather gloves to rescue a bat or a feral cat?

They can, but I don't think they should. Vegans I know that do rescue work usually wear welding gloves made of Kevlar to handle feral animals. It's strange to me why some vegans are so emotionally, financially and psychologically attached to old animal skin that they cling to the belief that it is somehow irreplaceable.

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#65 Old 06-28-2011, 02:14 PM
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Yeah, man, you can't justify buying leather new. Second hand at thrift stores is okay in my opinion, but some people would disagree with that as well.



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They can, but I don't think they should. Vegans I know that do rescue work usually wear welding gloves made of Kevlar to handle feral animals. It's strange to me why some vegans are so emotionally, financially and psychologically attached to old animal skin that they cling to the belief that it is somehow irreplaceable.

if it's a pre veg purchase I don't see what the problem is. I can see why you might be uncomfortable with it, but morally it's innocuous.
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#66 Old 06-28-2011, 03:19 PM
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Yeah, man, you can't justify buying leather new. Second hand at thrift stores is okay in my opinion, but some people would disagree with that as well.

I have a hard time justifying it as well...it's hard to deal with. But vegan shoes are scarce around these parts. I can't think of anybody that sells shoes around here that are vegan for work. I mean, there are basic shoes at Payless that are OK, but it shocks me that there aren't more options in the stores.

And, no...I will not buy shoes online. I need to try them on, I need to feel them and see what the material is like. I bought shoes online once...never again.

Is it hypocritical? It's certainly not the best choice but it's either that or walking around in tore up shoes or nothing at all. It would ONLY be hypocritical if I was passing up on vegan choices in the store to buy leather shoes instead. And that's not the case.

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#67 Old 06-28-2011, 03:29 PM
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Originally Posted by navigatorboy View Post

depending on your needs of a vehicle you may not be able to buy from other companies. my parent's businesses require SUV's or trucks and no cloth in those.

i shop on zappos all the time and never thought to search for them on there. i just did and saw one pair that i'll probably ask for, other than that i didn't like the selection much. my leather shows last a while i guess. i don't buy ones that cost like a thousand dollars and take them to the shop every month or anything. i just rotate so much that they don't get worn a lot.

what kind of SUVs are they buying that they don't have a cloth option? I have a chevy trailblazer, and there's no leather in it.

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#68 Old 06-29-2011, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by AlainWinthrope View Post

if it's a pre veg purchase I don't see what the problem is.

The problem is, that regardless of when you purchased the leather, every time you wear it you are condoning and re-inforcing the cultural belief that using animals for clothing is ok, when it is really a practice that is symbolic of cruelty, is morally wrong and not vegan.

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I can see why you might be uncomfortable with it, but morally it's innocuous.

Why is it that some vegans see it as morally wrong to put dead animal in their mouth but wearing dead animal on their back or feet is seen as morally inoffensive?

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#69 Old 06-29-2011, 11:38 AM
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The problem is, that regardless of when you purchased the leather, every time you wear it you are condoning and re-inforcing the cultural belief that using animals for clothing is ok, when it is really a practice that is symbolic of cruelty, is morally wrong and not vegan.

That kind of holds up for items that are obviously leather and worn for fashion purposes such as a leather jacket or pants, but it just doesn't make sense for utilitarian stuff, and things like shoes, belts and purses where the non-leather versions look almost identical.
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#70 Old 06-29-2011, 11:45 AM
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That kind of holds up for items that are obviously leather and worn for fashion purposes such as a leather jacket or pants, but it just doesn't make sense for utilitarian stuff, and things like shoes, belts and purses where the non-leather versions look almost identical.

It really doesn't matter whether other people can tell the difference between leather and pleather, if any vegan wears leather they are still personally condoning animal cruelty and that is a ****ed-up thing for a vegan to do no matter how much they try to rationalise that it isn't.

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#71 Old 06-29-2011, 12:02 PM
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It really doesn't matter whether other people can tell the difference between leather and pleather

Why not? Isn't the problem that other people would see it and think, "Oh, hey, it's cool to wear leather." Wouldn't it be wrong to wear faux leather that is too realistic looking by that reasoning?

What about for items that no one will ever see? It's really hard to make the "condoning the cultural practice" argument if no one sees it.

Throwing away all your leather items would be sort of like trying to throw up all the meat you ate, or trying to surgically remove every molecule of your body that might have come from meat. The damage to the animal is already done, and whatever you do now can't undo it no matter how hard you try.
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#72 Old 06-29-2011, 01:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Nishani View Post

It really doesn't matter whether other people can tell the difference between leather and pleather

It does if you insist on making the "symbolic" argument.

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Why is it that some vegans see it as morally wrong to put dead animal in their mouth but wearing dead animal on their back or feet is seen as morally inoffensive?

Because not everyone who identifies as a vegan takes the same axiological approach as you.

The show "Taboo" ran a story about a man in the UK who is essentially a vegan when it comes to the grocery store BUT he makes a habit of eating roadkill. He does this for both ecological and moral reasons. Would you call him a vegan? Perhaps not, but I consider him a philosophical bedfellow. Freegans function on much of the same logic.

Am I trying to argue that these people are vegans? No. But while you seem to take a consequentialist approach, others may not. The morality of a leather chair can be tied to the purchase (the commercial and financial engine of systemic exploitation) or to the object itself from here to eternity however it might be used. I don't know that any axiological theory is complete and most of us use a combination of consequence, virtue, and deontology. Furthermore, veganism isn't the only moral system that I function on. I also consider, for example, the ecological impact of buying new goods over old ones. So you can call it ****ed up and immoral, but I tend to think it's more ambiguous than that.
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#73 Old 08-03-2013, 05:43 AM
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*bumping an old thread as I was going to post something similar*

 

Even in my omni days I rarely wore anything made from leather as I really disliked the smell and feel of it.  I've always gone for man-made items so that part of transitioning was really easy for me.

 

I must admit I've never really understood why someone would refuse to eat animal's flesh and then happily wear an animal's skin.  I used to know a (really preachy) vegetarian who would extol the virtues of Quorn because it "doesn't hurt the animals" yet had a closet full of designer leather handbags and shoes.  Most of the bags sat around unused as part of her 'collection' or were later sold on at a profit.  I never had much respect for her because of this and it did, unfortunately, cloud my view of vegetarians for a while.

 

Edited to add link:

 

https://www.vegsoc.org/sslpage.aspx?pid=641#

 

"Leather is a material used for a variety of products, such as shoes, bags, wallets/purses, furniture, etc. It is created when an animal’s skin/hide is treated with chemicals to prevent it from rotting/degrading.

 

Some people believe it is ok to wear leather because they see it as a by-product of the meat industry whereby the animals weren't killed just for their skins while others believe that there's a strong chance the animal died naturally. However, very few farm animals ever reach the natural end of their lifespan, most are killed when they are little more than adolescents and around 40 billion farmed animals are reared intensively (12). Remaining animals go for slaughter because they are worn out by continuous breeding and/or lactation. About ten percent of the value of the animal at the abattoir is from its skin, so by buying leather this is helping to support the meat industry"

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#74 Old 08-03-2013, 07:23 AM
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This is an old thread! But it's a good topic. 

 

I don't personally get people who wear animals - no matter if they're vegetarian, vegan, meat-eater or what. I don't get how wearing animals is attractive. It's also so out there - like everyone can see it! 

 

Before I went vegetarian, at age 12 or so, there was this band I really liked, and in that band one of the singers had a jacket I liked. I used to beg my mom for that jacket. She actually got me one, and then I found it was leather after looking at the label. My mom said something like, well all of those types of jackets are leather, something I had no clue about.

 

I wore it once and even at 12, to someone woefully under-educated about AR, it seemed evil to wear it. I couldn't wear it again because it made me depressed and I ended up giving it to a friend. 

 

I disliked wearing animals before I quit eating them. So, that transition for me wasn't really a transition. 

 

I will say this, it's hard to avoid. I hate shopping, so I let my old garage sale vintage purse die last year, before looking for a new one. I thought it would be so easy to find a non-leather purse, but no. I had to sit in 2 or 3 store for 30 minutes looking through bags before I found one without real leather. That's nuts! 


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#75 Old 08-03-2013, 07:26 AM
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***

 

About ten percent of the value of the animal at the abattoir is from its skin, so by buying leather this is helping to support the meat industry"

When I researched this a couple of years ago on USDA and academic sites, about ten percent of the value of the animal was everything besides the flesh. So the products used for gelatin, fertilizer, bone char, leather, etc.,  all put together was ten percent. Leather being the most profitable of the byproducts at something more than five but considerably less than ten percent. There's a difference between helping to support the meat industry and being the thing that gets the animals bred and killed. Which is meat, not leather. Meat without leather would still be an industry. Milk without leather would still be an industry. Leather without meat is not, not in the US, not with what it costs to breed and feed a cow or steer to maturity.

 

But what I really want to address is this: If there's one word that's thrown around far too often and almost never correctly on Veggieboards, it's "hypocritical." Hypocrisy involves deceit, pretense, a gap between what someone professes publicly and how one behaves privately. It's nothing to do with giving unequal respect to different classes of animals, or giving different regard to animal flesh than to other slaughterhouse products. You might argue that wearing leather is illogical, or inconsistent, or not vegan, but please put "hypocritical" back in your holster. For all that vegans and vegetarians can be quite territorial about proper use of the terms "vegan" and "vegetarian,"  I think we really need to curb the use of this highly insulting term where it doesn't apply.

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#76 Old 08-03-2013, 07:45 AM
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But what I really want to address is this: If there's one word that's almost never used correctly on Veggieboards, it's "hypocritical." Hypocrisy involves deceit, pretense, a gap between what someone professes publicly and how one behaves privately.

 

To be fair Joan, I didn't use the word "hypocritical" (and neither did Jen), I just bumped a thread with that word in the title.  Had it been my thread I would have titled it 'do you think it's okay to be a vegetarian and wear leather'.

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#77 Old 08-03-2013, 07:53 AM
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To be fair Joan, I didn't use the word "hypocritical" (and neither did Jen), I just bumped a thread with that word in the title.  Had it been my thread I would have titled it 'do you think it's okay to be a vegetarian and wear leather'.


But now that the thread has been bumped, all the old posts are back on display. Plus, of course, the title of the thread. Providing textbook examples of what I'm talking about. I won't even get into the issue of vegans coming onto vegetarian forums discussing what they think it is and isn't okay for vegetarians to do. But it's thin ice, whether you call it hypocritical, inconsistent, or beige. It gets uncomfortably close to saying that if a vegetarian wears leather, that vegetarian should, or might as well, go back to eating meat. And surely nobody is really trying to say that???

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#78 Old 08-03-2013, 07:55 AM
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To be fair Joan, I didn't use the word "hypocritical" (and neither did Jen), I just bumped a thread with that word in the title.  Had it been my thread I would have titled it 'do you think it's okay to be a vegetarian and wear leather'.

Yeah, I was hoping that was clear!

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But what I really want to address is this: If there's one word that's thrown around far too often and almost never correctly on Veggieboards, it's "hypocritical." Hypocrisy involves deceit, pretense, a gap between what someone professes publicly and how one behaves privately. It's nothing to do with giving unequal respect to different classes of animals, or giving different regard to animal flesh than to other slaughterhouse products. You might argue that wearing leather is illogical, or inconsistent, or not vegan, but please put "hypocritical" back in your holster. For all that vegans and vegetarians can be quite territorial about proper use of the terms "vegan" and "vegetarian,"  I think we really need to curb the use of this highly insulting term where it doesn't apply.

 

I agree with this. I think it comes up though because people themselves feel "hypocritical" though as you point out what they really may be doing is more illogical or inconsistent. I know that when I was vegetarian I was big time into non-tested animal cleaners, no other animal products and of course, no meat. I felt personally hypocritical for making these decisions while I still ate cheese and eggs.

 

I think sometimes we put too much pressure on ourselves and then we say stuff like, "God, I'm so hypocritical!" - sometimes that's good, because it helps us accomplish our goals - as in, going vegan, ditching cruelty products, etc. However, I also think people tend to transfer these personal feelings OFTEN to other people and that's not ok because we're all on different paths and different time tables when it comes to food and animal issues.

 

When it comes to other people I think it's way more appropriate to use the term, inconsistent vs. hypocritical especially since we can't be in someone's head. We have no idea about how other people are working through their goals and/or ideals.


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#79 Old 08-03-2013, 09:01 AM
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But now that the thread has been bumped, all the old posts are back on display. Plus, of course, the title of the thread. Providing textbook examples of what I'm talking about.

 

I bumped an old thread because the subject was relevant and I thought you were supposed to 'recycle' threads on the same subject rather than making a new one every time.  I don't see an issue with old posts being back on display either?

 

 

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 I won't even get into the issue of vegans coming onto vegetarian forums discussing what they think it is and isn't okay for vegetarians to do. 

 

Yes, let's not get into that issue yet again especially seeing as how I'm actually a 'strict vegetarian' in all but username wink3.gif

I discuss what I think it is and isn't okay for an omni to do on non-veg*n forums so where's the difference?

 

Edited to add:  The OP of this thread is a self proclaimed vegetarian, not vegan btw.  

 

 

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It gets uncomfortably close to saying that if a vegetarian wears leather, that vegetarian should, or might as well, go back to eating meat. And surely nobody is really trying to say that???

 

 

 

It's not even close to saying that, please stop exaggerating.

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#80 Old 08-03-2013, 09:05 AM
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It's a bit odd, but if it's second hand leather, it's fine.

 

My vegetarian friend likes secondhand leather jackets....ewwww, but....okay....


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#81 Old 08-03-2013, 09:16 AM
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It gets uncomfortably close to saying that if a vegetarian wears leather, that vegetarian should, or might as well, go back to eating meat. And surely nobody is really trying to say that???

 

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Originally Posted by Quiet-Vegan View Post

 

It's not even close to saying that, please stop exaggerating.

 

Back when I was vegetarian I had a NEW (self-proclaimed) vegan tell me I may as well eat meat since I ate eggs and some dairy. I'd been vegetarian for 17 years. She'd been vegetarian and vegan for less than one year. That really irked me. PLUS she used animal tested cleaners, which is what started the debate in the first place. 

 

I've had plenty of newer vegetarians straight to vegans on my case in the past because I ate eggs and dairy, so this kind of stuff DOES happen. It's not an exaggeration by any means, and I know many vegetarians who will attest to that. I've even seen stuff like this on VB

 

That said, I don't think anyone here so far since this thread has been bumped are saying that at all. So far as I've seen, we're just not personally on board with leather, but none of us have said that constitutes eating meat. I sure don't believe that and my guess is neither does 4ever, Quiet or Joan. So, in this case we're good. 


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#82 Old 08-03-2013, 09:22 AM
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That said, I don't think anyone here so far since this thread has been bumped are saying that at all.

 

Yes, this is what I meant about not even coming close - I was referring to the posts on here.  Sorry, I obviously misinterpreted what Joan was saying.

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#83 Old 08-03-2013, 09:24 AM
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I bumped an old thread because the subject was relevant and I thought you were supposed to 'recycle' threads on the same subject rather than making a new one every time.  I don't see an issue with old posts being back on display either?  

I'm not saying they shouldn't be on display. I'm saying they are textbook examples -- among too many others on VB to cite them all -- of the misuse I was describing. You either agree or disagree with posters' sentiment  in this thread that for vegetarians to use leather is hypocritical, and I didn't see you disagreeing.  If you decide to disavow the use of "hypocritical" now, okay. Or if you'd rather endorse the wording, that would clarify things just as well. For my purposes, the misuse here of the term is just some clear examples of a widespread VB practice, so it's as goodnan opportunity as any to shine some light on the practice and call it out.

 

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It's not even close to saying that, please stop exaggerating.

I actually acknowledged, if you'll re-read my post, that it's probably not what anyone here actually means to argue. But if you can't see the "be consistent, one way or the other" implication behind criticizing those who "refuse to do X but will happily do Y," that's as clear as I can make it. I think, as Jen mentioned, we probably do agree more than we disagree about this in general. Sometimes when people agree on the broad strokes of an issue, we can get sort of fierce about some of the details.

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#84 Old 08-03-2013, 10:30 AM
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You either agree or disagree with posters' sentiment  in this thread that for vegetarians to use leather is hypocritical, and I didn't see you disagreeing.  If you decide to disavow the use of "hypocritical" now, okay. Or if you'd rather endorse the wording, that would clarify things just as well. 

 

Depending on the individual I both agree and disagree with the use of the word 'hypocrite' in the following context.

 

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/hypocrite

 

1.
a person who pretends to have virtues, moral or religious beliefs, principles, etc., that he or she does not actually possess, especially a person 
whose actions belie stated beliefs.
 

The person I referred to would pay hundreds of pounds for leather shoes/bags yet would openly accuse omnis of using/abusing animals.  I think that's kind of hypocritical ~ buying vanity items made out of leather and half the time not even using them, sometimes selling on for profit.  It's not as if she had to buy leather, there have been plenty of man-made alternatives around for years now.  It was a choice to use animal skin not a necessity.

 

Generally though, I wouldn't say it was hypocritical as not all vegetarians (or vegans) are in it 'for the animals'.

 

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 If you decide to disavow the use of "hypocritical" now, okay. Or if you'd rather endorse the wording, that would clarify things just as well. 

 

Why should I disavow something I never did in the first place, i.e. use the word hypocrite?  See above re: how I don't think it's a cut and dried issue

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#85 Old 08-03-2013, 11:02 AM
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Why should I disavow something I never did in the first place, i.e. use the word hypocrite?  See above re: how I don't think it's a cut and dried issue

To clear up confusion. We don't just disavow things we ever did in the first place, but also to distance ourselves from positions we could be easily mistaken as having endorsed. Such as when then-candidate Obama chose to disavow a number of statements attributed not to him but to his former pastor. When I first wrote about why I think it's kind of horrible to call vegetarians hypocritical for wearing leather, or for elevating some animals over others, your defense was that you hadn't written the thread title but had simply resurrected it. Which cleared up nothing about where you stood on the issue I'd raised.

 

I'm vegetarian, and I have a pretty high regard for non-human animal forms, which is not unrelated to my vegetarianism. In other words, I'm not in it solely for my health, nor solely for the environment, and not at all for any religious tradition. However, I do use leather, which is not inconsistent with life as the strictest vegetarian I know in real life. I've written about why I am at peace with this, and I take an instant and usually permanent dislike to anyone who chooses to term my choices in that regard as hypocritical. We could, but I hope we will not, do a back-and-for on the state of the leather industry in the US and in India.  It wouldn't change your mind and it wouldn't change mine. I just hope I've made clear enough why I believe calling it hypocritical for a vegetarian to use leather would be unfair, unkind, and misinformed. I think vegetarians who stop using leather are usually on the way to becoming vegans, which is fine, but I don't consider it appropriate to call out vegetarians for lleather use on the Vegetarian Support forum. From antagonistic omnivores I expect it and deal with it, but from fellow vegetarians it's dismaying.

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#86 Old 08-03-2013, 11:27 AM
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 I just hope I've made clear enough why I believe calling it hypocritical for a vegetarian to use leather would be unfair, unkind, and misinformed. 

 

In the particular case I described, it was an informed (and fair) comment based on her words and subsequent behaviour.  I don't generally go round making comments about veggies who wear leather shoes as I have no idea of their personal reasons for doing so.   I therefore agree that it would be unkind etc to make a blanket judgement about people who wear leather (which is why I haven't actually done so)


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When I first wrote about why I think it's kind of horrible to call vegetarians hypocritical for wearing leather, or for elevating some animals over others, your defense was that you hadn't written the thread title but had simply resurrected it. Which cleared up nothing about where you stood on the issue I'd raised.

 

Well hopefully it's clearer now, though I would like to point out my explanation was that I hadn't written the thread title, not my 'defence'.  There are certain circumstances where I feel it is hypocritical and I've already explained the reasons why I think that way.

 
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 I don't consider it appropriate to call out leather use on the Vegetarian Support forum.

 

As I said, I'm not the OP of the thread; it was a vegetarian who posted it and I assume they have the right to express their opinions about leather in the Vegetarian section.  If it's not appropriate then surely it should have been moved to the Compost Heap back in 2011?  Maybe it should be moved there now so as not to unintentionally upset anyone.

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#87 Old 08-03-2013, 11:37 AM
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As I said, I'm not the OP of the thread; it was a vegetarian who posted it and I assume they have the right to express their opinions about leather in the Vegetarian section.  If it's not appropriate then surely it should have been moved to the Compost Heap back in 2011?  Maybe it should be moved there now so as not to unintentionally upset anyone.

The vegetarian who started the thread was more asking than saying. But the posters responding who were all about the hypocrisy of leather-wearing vegetarians were VB vegans. And that's exactly what you yourself seemed to be, between what you wrote and your VB name, and your having resurrected the thread and all. Back in 2011 there wasn't much mod sentiment against vegans piling on in the Vegetarian Support forum. This thread is more of a throwback in that respect, and it has posts by some extremely outspoken vegans who haven't posted on VB in ages. It's not upsetting me at all to re-read this stuff, but it does seem a pretty good example of what I think vegans and vegetarians would do well to curb.

 

I guess I disagree that your vegetarian acquaintance was being hypocritical. Obnoxious, yes, and preachy and probably insufferable, so she did leave herself open to potshots if she was holding herself out as some kind of paragon of right-living. That's the thing about preachy; even if we don't wear leather we do something, and that something is where the shots will be aimed. I heard Penn Gillette taking a shot at the head of PETA for using animal-derived insulin, and his voice was dripping with venom and sarcasm as he lambasted her for it.

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#88 Old 08-03-2013, 11:53 AM
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I'm not responsible for the posts and attitudes of others simply because I bump a thread.  Similarly I don't necessarily agree with or condone the views of others.  Next time I'll post a new thread with a new title instead of bumping because my intention has been misconstrued. 

 

To make it clear ~ I don't see veggies wearing leather as being hypocritical unless they have a similar attitude to the person I specifically mentioned.

 

Right, I'm off out for a relaxing walk in the countryside :) See y'all later >>>>>>>

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#89 Old 08-03-2013, 12:34 PM
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I think veg/vegan people should use their own ethical filter and decide. I used to wear leather as a vegetarian (it didn't really cross my mind as an issue) and as a vegan for a short while as I had recycled/donated most of my footwear but couldn't afford to replace a non-vegan pair of winter boots at the time. I like that I have a shoe/boot collection that is cruelty-free now and there is so much more choice online now.

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#90 Old 08-03-2013, 01:54 PM
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I think veg/vegan people should use their own ethical filter and decide. I used to wear leather as a vegetarian (it didn't really cross my mind as an issue) and as a vegan for a short while as I had recycled/donated most of my footwear but couldn't afford to replace a non-vegan pair of winter boots at the time. I like that I have a shoe/boot collection that is cruelty-free now and there is so much more choice online now.

 

As a vegan, I tell people that there is more choice of non-leather shoes around these days. The reality when I was trying to find a suitable pair a couple of months ago in Leeds, in Manhattan, online etc was that it was an absolute nightmare. 

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