Originally Posted by ocrob37
So, it turns out I am becoming one of the people that I had issues with in the past. I hate labels and do or did get a little annoyed when I heard other people judge people when they did not fit into the perfect vegetarian or vegan. I used to read posts that upset me because I felt people were being so judgmental. I would always voice my opinion and do not regret what I have said. I think anyone that is trying to improve the way they live to better their health, environment, and animal welfare is doing a good job or at least better than the overall population. I was just across the street at a restaurant that serves sausages and go there for their amazing beer selection. I was sitting next to two guys and listened to them order their food. It sort of made me a little disgusted hearing about the different animal products they were ordering. I think I judged a little bit. lol I still think people should live how they want and am not going to judge my friends for eating meat. I am wondering if this will change? It might. I will still support anyone who is decreasing their meat consumption or trying to live vegetarian and not doing a perfect job. I just know that I made hummus from scratch today and spread it on an amazing sandwich that had avocado and tomato. It was better than any lunch I could have gotten at a restaurant. It is a little sad that so many people do not know what they are missing out on. They are conditioned to think eating meat tastes great and are too close minded to try the alternative. It is also sad they do not know or care how badly the environment is being depleted by their actions. I won't even get into animal welfare because people are in denial and I think we need to take one step at a time. I still have a long way to go, but feel pretty good about my footprint in this life. It can improve and I am sure it will.
Interesting post and I can relate to some of what you've said here.
Regarding judging people because they are meat eaters, this is how I look at it. If they don't know because no one has ever brought it to their attention (the violence, etc.) I'll give them a pass and a nudge in the better direction. If they do know and they are trying to cut back/give it up, I'll encourage them in every way possible. If they do know and they don't care, I'll judge the hell out of them just like they would judge their neighbour who insists on beating and kicking their poor dog every time that guy walks past it on the porch. And I also, if involved in a discussion, will make sure that they understand that this person (me) considers their meat eating as participating in animal abuse which makes them an animal abuser. And if they want to challenge me on that and get all huffy because I've done the unthinkable and 'judged' them, then I'm very open to admit that I used to be an animal abuser too, and then my eyes were opened to what I was doing and I quit participating.
And all of that said, when it comes to family and their meat eating, I back off. I can do a better job being an example of compassion and good health to them then if I pick fights with the people that I'm closest too. The fights can be had with people they might encounter online and those people can show them that 'they are participating in animal abuse, etc.' and then I can be that friendly vegan in the family who only encourages and guides if it comes to them wanting to change because they've begun to understand. And in turn, I'm willing and able to be that 'bad cop' online for other peoples friends and family who haven't yet seen the light.
I think the whole 'we can't judge others' phenomena has come about because of the Christian heritage of so many where most of us have heard the phrase, 'judge not lest ye be judged' to the point that we've become phobic about the possibility that someone will consider us judgemental. But really, if you knew that some guy was molesting a little kid, would any of us not judge that person and would we not ALL feel fully justified in doing so? If any of us knew that some woman in a care home was slapping around a 95 year old person who couldn't defend themselves, would any of us NOT judge that person? Of course we would and society would support that 'judgement' although no one would condone vigilantism. So why do we get all paranoid about being thought 'judgemental' when it comes to meat eaters who don't care that animals suffer every moment of every day and by the billions?
I think the thing is to always keep it polite, no name calling, and to have the facts firmly in line for any discussion that may result.