VeggieBoards banner
1 - 20 of 33 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,778 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Come to think of my post in the 'How many people I converted' thread, here is something I've been philosophising about for some time now:

It seems clear that milk is perhaps more disgusting and unnatural than meat. Even if the 'meat eating is natural' argument has some merit (at least for the most superficial observer - after all there *are* animals who naturally consume other animals), this very argument alone is sufficient to do away with all of the dairy industry. Apes sometimes kill small animals, I'll grant that. But have you ever seen a grown ape suckling on a giraffe's nipples. See, I knew you have not.

Besides, the dairy industry is very cruel too, methinks there is a good argument for it to be MORE cruel than meat. If I had to choose, I would want to be rather a pig than a dairy cow - it's over much faster. I'm not even going into the veal business here.

So - this whole milk thing is disgusting for sure. Buuuut.... Isn't it even more disgusting to women? I mean, when observed in a detached manner, this stuff is nothing else than the maternal milk of another species within our very own mammalian family (= quite close kins). The female members of this species are bred and held in captivity, and as soon as they reach sexual maturity, they are kept in the state of constant pregnancy through perpetual rape and literally milked all day, their babies taken away a few hours after birth.

Doesn't these insights instinctively establish in women a) some kind of female link or something because of the abuse of the natural process of motherhood, and b) refusal to consume the milk once it is realized it's actually the maternal milk of another female?

It's at least arguable that a girl, once she knows the facts, would shun milk automatically even more than meat, at least when it comes to the ethical argument of veganism. According to this reasoning then, the numbers of lacto-vegies among girls should be very low. Yet, though I don't have specific statistics, this is clearly not the case.

I can think of three answers:

1. Even vegies don't know or think about the realities of dairy - many of them might even self sedate themselves into the "milk does not hurt animals/does no kill animals/is good for me" myths.

2. That ever-mystical relationship between women and milk chocolate. If you ever stood between a girl and the last piece of a bar of chocolate, you know what I'm talking about here.

3. My theory is ballooney.

Dear VeggieBoarders, I am truly puzzled!

[edited for sp]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,049 Posts
i know that once i had and nursed my first baby, the idea of stealing another female's child away from her and taking away her milk, sure freaked me out a lot more than i ever thought possible. i didn't do much reading about the conditions dairy cows lived in, even as a vegetarian. i went vegetarian because my husband was one, and i never liked cooking meat anyway, so i wasn't about to just do it for myself; and also because i wanted to raise my son with the healthiest diet possible, and i knew that did not include meat. (at least, not the meat that we would have been eating, had we not be veg').

i think that it's kind of sexist, though, to say that the suffering dairy cows endure is supposed to be somehow more upsetting to women. it only reinforces the stereotype that women are somehow more "in tune" with their feelings and/or are more sensitive than men...which does both genders a disservice. one, because woman are supposed to be more gentle/submissive/emotional and therefore people are agahst when they meet or hear of a woman who ISN'T gentle/submissive/emotional (ie. a "*****"); and because it implies that men are somehow incapable of being gentle/submissive/emotional. which isn't true. i know that wasn't what you meant by your post, but i did just want to put that out there as food for thought.

all that being said, women can be just as, if not more callous as men, so no. i don't believe that the torment that industry dairy cows goes through should affect women more. it should and will affect all the people sensitive to the plight of industry animals, no matter what their gender.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,778 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Aha, that was interesting info Kreeli about your nursing experience.

I agree with the rest of your post, including that women must be more sensible was NOT what I meant.
I meant exactly what you described, namely that women may have closer hands-on experience/instincts with the subject of motherhood and that they might not even need to consciously think much about the morality of milking cows, they "just know" it's wrong.

Once it comes to pure thinking and reasoning, though both sexes have same capabilities. Many of the best texts I've read pointing out the cruelty against dairy cows were written by men - and I'm one too.

I'll try my best to avoid crossing your paths when u r heading towards choc...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,049 Posts
Quote:
Originally posted by Oatmeal

...namely that women may have closer hands-on experience/instincts with the subject of motherhood and that they might not even need to consciously think much about the morality of milking cows, they "just know" it's wrong.

okay, right. but i didn't just know it was wrong. i've been a woman my whole life, and was an ovo-lacto vegetarian for three years before i became vegan (when my son was 16 months old), and i didn't just know it was wrong. i never knew that the dairy industry was as brutal on cows as it is until i went vegan for health reasons and then started to do more reading about the conditions they live in.

there was no "just know"ing for me, as a woman-born-woman, or even as a new mom. i lived my life the same way i think most people do; eating and drinking what i was served as i grew up, and never thinking much about where it came from.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,907 Posts
When I nursed my son, I would get looks of disgust from some people. I would often be asked when I was planning on weaning (he weaned himself a few months after he turned 2). Breastfeeding is looked down apon so many people as a sexual act. I've asked a few cow-milk drinkers when they were planning on weaning themselves. I have a cartoon on my fridge that says,"If milk is so natural, go suck a cow's tit" that pretty much sums up my feelings.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,541 Posts
LOL

I think you'll also find that some women try and distance themselves from the whole "nature link" in an attempt at emancipation... never mind, not getting into it here.

I agree wholeheartedly with what Kreeli said. I am weaning myself off milk choc as we have a fantastic soy choc here in Oz. Milk itself is starting to gross me out, but cheese is a problem as I loooove cooking with cheese. I am not a mother therefore I have not the slightest idea what it is like to be a mother suckling a child. If I have a baby I'll let you know if I become more sensitive to the whole thing.

I don't know if I would hierarchicise (LOL) animal cruelty like that (death is death and misery is misery)... I mean, there is a certain point where it crosses the line and you say NO WAY, but I am not going to judge one type of suffering in this sense as worse than another, because they are all bad. It was like when I ate meat, I ate veal becuse even though I knew it was cruel, it seemed hypocritical to think "well eating pork is okay but eating veal, now that's just plain wrong" because they are BOTH cruel. Dairy is in so many things that it is a struggle to leave it. I'm rambling, but in short, to me, it's all bad but meat was the most urgent thing for me...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
0 Posts
I was so addicted to cheese until I learned what actually goes into the cheese making process. Now I wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole.

Someone on this board once said (not that long ago) that parmesean cheese smelled like puke. The response to that was well, in a way it is. If you already know this just ignore me.

Calves have an extra stomach to help them break down their mothers milk. It basically coagulates the milk. Well, it's my understanding that this same substance in the extra stomach that coagulates the mothers milk also coagulates the cheese so that can form a solid. Of course, you can't get this unless you kill the calf and remove the stomach.

Also, and I don't really recall who it was, someone else brought up the point that if you've ever seen a baby get sick on it's mother's milk, you know how it looks kinda cottage cheesy?? And kinda smells cheesy?? Well, you get the point.

Maybe knowing this will help in avoiding eating cheese??

Or maybe someone else can give a better explaination of cheese making....
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
261 Posts
That really is true, about the scent of parmesan. It smells so much like vomit. I wlaked into my parents' room the other dya, where they were eatying osmething with parmesan on it, and said, "Who threw up in here?!", dead serious, because it smells *exactly* like it. They said, "no one," and I just kept asking, you know, "Come on, soemthing threw up in here. Can't you smell it?!" Eventually I figured out it was the parmesan. Cheese is so disghusting, all of it. Coagulated pus-and blood filled mammory gland secretions. I don't know. I just can't stnad the smell of any of it. Grilled cheese makes me want to vomit myself. They cooked it in the food lab at my school the other day, and the whole time I was on the second floor, especially near the room it was cooekd in, I felt truly sick. It smells so "animalic"(I'm stealing a word I once heard someone use describing milk's taste after you get used to soymilk, it just fits so well), like somethingl ike that just shouldn't be cooking and is just really gross...I dont know.

Anyways..that was kind of off-topic but had to comment...

Cassie
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,541 Posts
Okay, yes, that was gross...

My cheese is non-animal rennet but I get your point.... yummy.... blech...

It's one thing to know, and another to actually link the two together in such a way that you can get over the cravings...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,778 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Very interesting. You are all right of course that the animal industry should/would gross anyone out sufficiently and quite equally enough, once the facts are known. (Oh and the addictions are taken care of.... :)

I was just thinking along the lines of, for instance, eating the testicles of a bull. While even most carnivores would find it objectionable, I presume that I as a guy feel 'it' maybe even more in my guts (or, in this case, lower). Of course here the link between my food and what I am actually consuming is much more in-your-face.

p.s. I like that you girls are so.... well, normal? I can relate to shewolf's warning as I was once surrounded by women who... Let me just say that one had to run everything one said through multiple filters to remove any 'sensitive material'. You can imagine that as I was bringing forth my ideas, I got a lot of these looks:
For this thread I would have gotten
and this on a good day.

Buuuut, this is another topic alltogether.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,541 Posts
I figured out what I was trying to say too... it's one thing to know intellectually what goes into it but it's not that easy to make the emotional link... and for me, the emotional link is what made me change. Cheese looks so far removed from the suffering involved in it that it's a hard process to combine the two... whereas meat bears a distinct visual relationship. Anyway, after all this I have decided to minimise my dairy intake, unlike the meat this will be gradual though. I need to check out all the substitutes...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
0 Posts
I'm kind of going through a similar process, shewolf. Currently I'm lacto-ovo, but I'm trying to internalize all the reasons for avoiding dairy and eggs, so that it will intrinsically lose its appeal. Rationally, I understand the arguments against the milk industry (and egg industry, too). But as you said, it's internalizing it that makes me want to change. And like you, I think it's going to be a slow process. I went meatless and "slaughter by-product-less" basically overnight, but it's going to take me awhile to figure out how to change my cooking. I love soymilk, so that's a start.

But anyway... back to the original topic...

Since breasts, milk ducts, nipples, etc. are all a part of my body, the milk ducts and products of other mammalians don't gross me out. I wouldn't mind donating my breast milk to others in need of it, so the thought of drinking breast milk from cows doesn't necessarily gross me out either. Hell, I'd nourish other animals with my breast milk... why not?


BUT... cruel dairy operations and the veal which is produced as a byproduct... that grosses me out. And that in itself is a reason for me to stop drinking milk and using butter. Cheese is going to take awhile (I can't stand soycheese). I buy rennetless cheeses, so the "vomit" argument doesn't apply... but the fact that it comes from milk is something to give me pause.

I'm working on it, anyway
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,541 Posts
Molly said:

"Since breasts, milk ducts, nipples, etc. are all a part of my body, the milk ducts and products of other mammalians don't gross me out. I wouldn't mind donating my breast milk to others in need of it, so the thought of drinking breast milk from cows doesn't necessarily gross me out either. Hell, I'd nourish other animals with my breast milk... why not?

BUT... cruel dairy operations and the veal which is produced as a byproduct... that grosses me out. And that in itself is a reason for me to stop drinking milk and using butter. Cheese is going to take awhile (I can't stand soycheese). I buy rennetless cheeses, so the "vomit" argument doesn't apply... but the fact that it comes from milk is something to give me pause."

Yep, agree with all of that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,541 Posts
I would just like a say, I had a tiny bit of cheese on my sgetti last night and it actually grossed me out slightly... the taste, that is...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,778 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
OK I have a confession to make here. Milk grosses *me* out because of what it is (secretion of mammary glands of bovine species, etc). More than the women who posted here...

That's very interesting... *ponders*

Note to self: it's solution #3 (theory is ballooney).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,541 Posts
LOL That's interesting... maybe it grosses us out less precisely because we are female, and know that we are capable of doing the breastfeed thing... so it seems more natural? And for a man, it seems unnatural because it is something you can't do?

Tell me you're not grossed out by human women breastfeeding though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,778 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Are you implying anything sexist here???

Don't know if it's out of milk envy (to paraphrase Freud). We have a pic on the fridge from gotmilk.com of a girl (Rebecca Romijn Stamos or something) with a milk mustache. I always thought my mixed feelings when I look at the picture arise from the bikini+milk combination. But you make me realize it might be because she asks *me* the question, "Got Milk???" every time I open the fridge!

I find breastfeeding women/babies absolutely adorable. I love women and I love babies so that's an easy one!!

I find cows breastfeeding cow babies cute too. Anything natural.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,541 Posts
No, nothing sexist me dear, I was just hoping that you weren't turned off by women breastfeeding.
I hate sexism with a vengeance, including reverse sexism...

LOL about the Got Milk thing! Take that Freud!
 
1 - 20 of 33 Posts
Top