When does veganism get too "extreme"? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 06-18-2011, 12:55 PM
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For most people, veganism is about "doing what is possible, and not about perfection." Some examples I personally think are extreme are not going outside to take a walk because you might step on a bug, not driving because of the possibility you might hit an animal, or to a lesser extent, not going to supermarkets or restaurants that sell or serve animal products. In a perfect world we would be able to do-or not do these things, but obviously, it is not realistic. With that said, I have been in a couple situation where I have been debating myself if I am going too far. I don't know whether these situations should be avoided or if I should just suck it up Here are 2 that come to mind:

1. The dentist I go to uses Colgate toothpaste which tests on animals. It is a big switch to change dentists, because I have been at this one for years and they already know me really well. I told them the reason I don't like it, and they said I could bring my own toothpaste, but the money I pay to get my teeth cleaned will still go to buy new toothpaste. Also, most dentists offices probably use brands that test on animals anyway, so this may not work.

2. Some relatives invited me to go to Hershey's Park in Pennsylvania. I feel like my money going towards the theme park will help make more candy bars, thus hurting more animals. I don't see these relatives often, and they have young kids who really enjoy the park, and my money probably won't have much of an effect on the Hershey's business, but I will still feel guilty.

What do you think I should do in these 2 situations, and have you been in any situations where you think you might be going a little too far, but you still don't know how to handle it?

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#2 Old 06-18-2011, 01:30 PM
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I do what's comfortable for me, and I don't care whether other people think I am going too far. I rarely attempt to give reasons for my refusal to do something I don't want to do, and I don't lecture other people when they do things I wouldn't do.

How far you take "extremes", beyond the obvious "no milk, eggs, cheese, leather, wool, honey, zoos, etc." is often more a matter of personal comfort than taking a public stance against something. I would never condemn someone who felt they needed to wear a breathing mask to avoid inhaling tiny airborne critters. I myself do not like to sit on my family's leather furniture. I don't make a fuss about why to them, because that is pointless. I also wouldn't expect anyone else to "boycott" sitting on leather furniture either. I know that for me it is a matter of personal discomfort that may not be shared by any other vegans.

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#3 Old 06-18-2011, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by AdamLayish View Post

For most people, veganism is about "doing what is possible, and not about perfection." Some examples I personally think are extreme are not going outside to take a walk because you might step on a bug, not driving because of the possibility you might hit an animal, or to a lesser extent, not going to supermarkets or restaurants that sell or serve animal products. In a perfect world we would be able to do-or not do these things, but obviously, it is not realistic. With that said, I have been in a couple situation where I have been debating myself if I am going too far. I don't know whether these situations should be avoided or if I should just suck it up Here are 2 that come to mind:

1. The dentist I go to uses Colgate toothpaste which tests on animals. It is a big switch to change dentists, because I have been at this one for years and they already know me really well. I told them the reason I don't like it, and they said I could bring my own toothpaste, but the money I pay to get my teeth cleaned will still go to buy new toothpaste. Also, most dentists offices probably use brands that test on animals anyway, so this may not work.

2. Some relatives invited me to go to Hershey's Park in Pennsylvania. I feel like my money going towards the theme park will help make more candy bars, thus hurting more animals. I don't see these relatives often, and they have young kids who really enjoy the park, and my money probably won't have much of an effect on the Hershey's business, but I will still feel guilty.

What do you think I should do in these 2 situations, and have you been in any situations where you think you might be going a little too far, but you still don't know how to handle it?

Honestly, I would be fine with participating in both the situations you describe.

I buy vegan toiletries for my own home, but I don't usually worry about the toothpaste at the dentist's office, the soap in public restrooms, etc.

I would have no problem going to Hershey Park as long as I wasn't buying or doing anything non-vegan while I was there (eating milk chocolate for example.) I'd be fine with riding the rides, eating vegan food, etc.

I shop in regular grocery stores, go to regular restaurants, buy Silk soymilk even though it's owned by a dairy company, etc. I feel that as long as I am not directly purchasing anything non-vegan, I am doing my part and it might even be a good thing to help these businesses see that there is a demand for vegan products.

I guess I'm at the less extreme end of veganism.
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#4 Old 06-18-2011, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by AdamLayish View Post

For most people, veganism is about "doing what is possible, and not about perfection." Some examples I personally think are extreme are not going outside to take a walk because you might step on a bug,

I would consider that extreme.

I did read that a vegan on another forum refuses to take meds (because of animal testing) even though he is in unbearable pain due to a medical condition and for me that seems extreme but it's his choice.

I know I disagree with other vegans on some issues but it really is doing what you feel most comfortable with and that you feel aligns with your own vegan principles.
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#5 Old 06-18-2011, 01:51 PM
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I would consider that extreme.

I did read that a vegan on another forum refuses to take meds (because of animal testing) even though he is in unbearable pain due to a medical condition and for me that seems extreme but it's his choice.

I know I disagree with other vegans on some issues but it really is doing what you feel most comfortable with and that you feel aligns with your own vegan principles.

I should have listed the medicine thing. My dad is a doctor so he thinks pills are like magic. I'm on like 7 different meeds right now, and I don't really have a choice.

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#6 Old 06-18-2011, 02:18 PM
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I will say one word to Vegans who think they are at the extreme end and think they've covered every base....

Jainism.

If you want to be the the far, extreme end, practise Jainism.

Just playing Devil's Advocate, you understand....

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#7 Old 06-18-2011, 02:19 PM
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This is a little off topic but I don't believe in circumcising infants, I'm an intactivist. One of my other intactivist friends said she will not see a doctor that does circumcisions. I think that's extreme especially when she can reach out to the doctors there and even the patients. What good for the cause is she doing by seeing only anti circumcision doctors?

I used to avoid soy but ill consume a little if its organic and fermented lol
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#8 Old 06-18-2011, 02:40 PM
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It's subjective, but my maximum limit is hurting other humans, be it physically, mentally/emotionally. The rest is fair game IMHO.
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#9 Old 06-18-2011, 04:31 PM
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I don't think I ever had my teeth brushed with toothpaste at the dentist. Every cleaning I've had at a Dentist office involved a Woman scraping my teeth with metal instruments and often a little too aggressively. Having 4 wisdom teeth pulled my a male oral surgeon was actually less painful than these teeth cleanings by female dental assistants. WHAT THE **** IS IT ABOUT ME THAT REMINDS THESE WOMEN OF FORMER BOYFRIENDS AND EX-HUSBANDS ????
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#10 Old 06-18-2011, 05:16 PM
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In those two situations, I personally would not worry about it.

And if you feel any tinge of guilt or worry about it, just go hand out some Vegan Outreach pamphlets and put it all in perspective.
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#11 Old 06-18-2011, 05:38 PM
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For myself in situation one I wouldn't worry about it.

In situation two I wouldn't go. I absolutely do not like Hershey for many reasons and I will not give them a penny.

But I think you should just do whatever you feel comfortable with. If you don't feel comfortable with using a non-vegan toothpaste at the dentist office then take your own. If you feel comfortable giving Hershey your money to spend time with relatives then go ahead.

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#12 Old 06-18-2011, 08:44 PM
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When you start bungee jumping to raise money for the animals.

Otherwise, I'd say it's up to you what extreme you take it to. If it bothers you to use Colgate, I doubt any dentist would have a problem with you bringing your own toothpaste. As for the amusement park, I go to omni restaurants and give them money to spend time with my family, I don't think there is that much of a difference.
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#13 Old 06-18-2011, 08:48 PM
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agreed...take your own toothpaste, and sometimes it's best to just keep your feelings to yourself,and enjoy family time. Esp if there's a group going. totally up to you.

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#14 Old 06-19-2011, 02:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AdamLayish View Post

When does veganism get too "extreme"? \t\t\t\t


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#15 Old 06-19-2011, 02:58 AM
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How far you take "extremes", beyond the obvious "no milk, eggs, cheese, leather, wool, honey, zoos, etc." is often more a matter of personal comfort than taking a public stance against something. I would never condemn someone who felt they needed to wear a breathing mask to avoid inhaling tiny airborne critters...I know that for me it is a matter of personal discomfort that may not be shared by any other vegans.

I agree with this. I would never condemn someone as being "too extreme" for not doing something they weren't comfortable with. Even if I thought it was silly, it isn't really anything to do with me, if it isn't harming anyone. Most people think that being vegan is "far too extreme" anyway, and this fustrates me so much, I can't see myself ever critisising someone in the same way.

Personally I'd be happy with both those situations.
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#16 Old 06-19-2011, 04:57 AM
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I wouldn't have a problem with either situation. You are not going to find a dentist doesn't use some sort of product that is somehow considered "non vegan".

I would go to Hershey to see family (although I think the place looks stupid and I despise amusement parks). I don't see a difference in giving money to them and giving money to grocery stores and restaurants that also sell meat.

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I would consider that extreme.

I did read that a vegan on another forum refuses to take meds (because of animal testing) even though he is in unbearable pain due to a medical condition and for me that seems extreme but it's his choice.

I think this is horrible. It reminds me of religious extremists who let their sick children suffer and die a slow painful death because they don't believe in medicine and doctors .
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#17 Old 06-19-2011, 05:37 AM
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It gets too extreme when you can't consume your own saliva because it's an animal product.



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#18 Old 06-19-2011, 01:02 PM
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2. Some relatives invited me to go to Hershey's Park in Pennsylvania. I feel like my money going towards the theme park will help make more candy bars, thus hurting more animals. I don't see these relatives often, and they have young kids who really enjoy the park, and my money probably won't have much of an effect on the Hershey's business, but I will still feel guilty.

Well, I avoid a lot of chocolate, not only because there is so much milk, but also due to the production of chocolate (like the chocolate Hershey's gets):
http://www.laborrights.org/stop-chil...ign/news/12397
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Childre...coa_production

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What do you think I should do in these 2 situations, and have you been in any situations where you think you might be going a little too far, but you still don't know how to handle it?

In terms of my veganism, I just avoid buying or using animal products (to the best of my ability) and I do my best to research and buy from companies that do not test on animals. I make mess ups, but I do try.

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#19 Old 06-19-2011, 02:36 PM
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There's no such thing as too extreme, only not extreme enough...

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#20 Old 06-21-2011, 08:46 PM
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My high school's physics class takes a trip to Hershey Park every year. I had learned about the chocolate slavery issue the summer before taking physics so i didn't go to Hershey Park with my class. If there wasn't the ethical problems with cocoa production i wouldn't have had a problem giving them my money even-though most of their products contain dairy.

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#21 Old 06-23-2011, 08:39 AM
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I only avoid large chain companies that specialise in meat/animal products, like McDonalds for example, even if I'm only getting a cup of coffee from them.

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#22 Old 06-23-2011, 03:53 PM
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#23 Old 06-23-2011, 08:34 PM
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In those two situations, I personally would not worry about it.

And if you feel any tinge of guilt or worry about it, just go hand out some Vegan Outreach pamphlets and put it all in perspective.

I like your solution/thought process Elaine.
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#24 Old 06-23-2011, 09:24 PM
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Since going vegan and then taking biology classes in school, I've always wondered how far you could take it. I mean, plants are living things, are they not? They respire, metabolize, etc. We kill them to consume them... how is it fair to kill a plant when it isn't fair to kill an animal? Furthermore, plants produce oxygen for us... is it right to harvest something that is supplying us with a component necessary for life?
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#25 Old 06-23-2011, 09:29 PM
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If you start eating dirt only, you have taken it too extreme.
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#26 Old 06-23-2011, 09:30 PM
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Since going vegan and then taking biology classes in school, I've always wondered how far you could take it. I mean, plants are living things, are they not? They respire, metabolize, etc. We kill them to consume them... how is it fair to kill a plant when it isn't fair to kill an animal? Furthermore, plants produce oxygen for us... is it right to harvest something that is supplying us with a component necessary for life?

I don't know if you are vegetarian or vegan, but veganism isn't about not killing everything that is alive. It's about not treating sentient beings like vending machines.

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#27 Old 06-23-2011, 09:44 PM
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I don't know if you are vegetarian or vegan, but veganism isn't about not killing everything that is alive. It's about not treating sentient beings like vending machines.

I respect your opinion but I believe veganism can have have different connotations. Besides, how do you personally know that foliage is not sentient? There are some plants that have the ability to readily respond to stimuli.
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#28 Old 06-23-2011, 10:23 PM
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I respect your opinion but I believe veganism can have have different connotations. Besides, how do you personally know that foliage is not sentient? There are some plants that have the ability to readily respond to stimuli.

Well okay, but there is no connotation of veganism that makes the eating of plants immoral or unethical.

As far as plants go, ask yourself what purpose being self aware would serve a plant? Sentience is a pretty complex survival mechanism. It takes a lot more evolutionary process for organisms to arrive at self awareness, and no species develops any more skills than the minimum they need to fit their niches.

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#29 Old 06-23-2011, 10:24 PM
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I respect your opinion but I believe veganism can have have different connotations. Besides, how do you personally know that foliage is not sentient? There are some plants that have the ability to readily respond to stimuli.

Lots of things respond to stimuli. My computer does. My light circuit. My sprinkler does too. Even the rocks, dirt, air, etc do. Is responding to stimuli sufficient to conclude sentience?

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#30 Old 06-23-2011, 10:41 PM
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I respect your opinion but I believe veganism can have have different connotations. Besides, how do you personally know that foliage is not sentient? There are some plants that have the ability to readily respond to stimuli.

Plants don't have brains or nervous systems, but lets pretend for a minute and operate on the assumption that plants can feel pain. What then?

People need to eat something to survive, and plants are as low on the food chain as you can go. The animals that people kill to make Big Macs also spend their whole lives eating plants, so if you are eating plants AND animals you are creating an enormous amount of suffering and easily avoidable death.

That's why it's so stupid when meat eaters get defensive and use the "plants have feelings too" argument, it makes absolutely no sense. If plants did have feelings too that would be all the more reason to stop eating meat and thus minimize their suffering.

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