I’m vegan. I’m eatin’. Get used to it.
Whatever the reason for not enjoying a same gendered friend’s backyard and gnawing on their meat, all are certainly entitled to partake in what they like. And despite the obvious benefits, like increased happiness, reduced stress, and statistically longer lives, even with all the wealth of information from the Internet, many of my kind are severely misunderstood and even oppressed.
It’s no secret. I’ve told my parents. My best friends have known for awhile. Hell, I moved across the U.S., in part, to escape the frustrations of being a social outcast even in a city as progressive as New York. And yet, despite all of humanity’s advancements, there’s a mountain of prejudice and ignorance against people like me. It’s time I stood up and told the world in hopes that others will be spared abuse. I’m vegan. I’m eatin’. Get used to it.
I became vegan over the last few years and my reasons aren’t limited to the same old annoying stereotypes. Sure, I wanted to feel healthier and raw plant nutrition has changed that game. And it infuriates me to witness the mass genocide of living creatures as wasteful products in worse than concentration camp conditions. Your great grandparents would be appalled. But my biggest reason for being vegan is science.
Food has been a part of our every day routine since we were born, but do we question any of it? The answers are surprisingly simple and just as easily overlooked. I spent the first 30 years of my life enthusiastically eating anything and everything. I mean… bacon was my favorite cereal. So I can relate to the aggravated prejudice toward arrogant hippy dippy bleeding heart vegans. It wasn’t an easy transition from a world of anything and everything to navigate considerably narrowed options under the modern food regime. Today, I speak from the far side of that struggle. With great empathy for being preached to, the best way to share what I know is to be asked. Nothing excites an expert in their field more than to be asked “Why?”. To read on, we both agree that you’ve just asked.
Humans insist on calling ourselves omnivores (both plant and animal eaters). Biologically, that’s not the case. An alien race of scientists from another planet with none of our Ego or culinary traditions would instantly declare that humans, like horses, gorillas, elephants, and other herbivores (plant eaters), have flat grinding teeth and small incisors inadequate for tearing flesh. The bacteria and enzymes in the mouths and stomachs of Homo sapiens are equally inferior for the efficient digestion of animal fats and proteins. The much longer human intestinal system is overwhelmed and exhausted by digesting meat products. All of these traits are found in other herbivores, not omnivores and certainly not carnivores (meat eaters). The damage we do to ourselves out of tradition is gradual, lasting, mutating, and deadly. MRI studies have shown immediate artery inflammation and damage during the consumption and digestion of carnivorous and processed foods. You could feasibly watch your cardiovascular system freak the fuck out in real time mid-chew.
And still, these developmentally conscious beings with opposable thumbs, who invented and mastered sharp tools to mimic the violent animal world around them, have convinced themselves of needing to feast upon various other Earthlings for their dominant survival. Meanwhile, these mislabeled predators suffer from allergic reactions to meat and dairy products ranging from indigestion, acid reflux, bloating, lethargy, and acne to heart failure and aggressive cancers that may not surface for decades. To an outsider, it looks shockingly insane.
The human body has the almost miraculous ability to heal itself and thrive under a proper nutritional diet. Not only are a majority of today’s foods unrecognizable by just two generations prior, but they’re nutritionally muted or completely void. Fast food restaurants and supermarkets only recently in human history began offering conveniences to a growing population. Western medicine evolved along with the food industry to put newer and more advanced chemical band-aids on worsening symptoms. It’s not your doctor’s fault nobody taught them nutrition, even though the Hippocratic Oath all medical practitioners swear upon is “First, Do No Harm.” If you don’t think doctors are clueless about nutrition, consider the American hospital stay staples of processed white toast and Jell-0.
Make no mistake that humans are biological animals. And it’s in every animal’s nature to serve three primal ambitions beyond procreation,
1) eat food,
2) conserve energy, and
3) seek pleasure, which ideally couples with procreation.
With the least amount of energy and thought required, the modern food system has provided nearly effortless meal options (and free time) with artificially exaggerated flavors that fire off our receptors for pleasure and satisfy that animal conditioning. Except our bodies actually work harder internally to digest what it identifies as harmful and we’ve become accustomed to those allergic reactions. Since we’re trying to conserve energy, let’s not think too much about that. Time for a nap after that lunch.
Embodied within this mass food production system are assembly line traditions that require more and more eggs, chickens, cattle, and dairy at a higher and higher cost to all life on Earth, but even more alarming, our own individual health and survival. The system may actually be too big to fail barring economic collapse, but you have the choice to step outside and change it by not needing it. Because I promise you don’t.
It would be the conclusion of this hypothetical alien biology study of humanity, that we have not yet fully evolved a common sense intelligence for our own survival. Self-inflicted damage out of willful ignorance is the mark of a primitive culture. Future generations will inevitably evolve to thrive on plant nutrition that nature not only intended, but clearly demands. We’ll have to. Turns out you really are what you eat. A whole food plant based diet is the only preventative cure for cancer, heart disease, nearly all other ailments and it’s been growing right under our feet the entire time.
So before you judge me, have the debate or better yet, come out with me. I’m still not eating cock, though.
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Mike Cechnicki is a Writer, Producer, and Voice Artist for SiriusXM satellite radio including The Jason Ellis Show & Channel, Alt Nation, Liquid Metal, Faction, and various other projects.
The opinion expressed this article are solely those of Mike Cechnicki.