Carl Lewis Sells Out

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We really didn’t need another example of why many many celebrities can’t be trusted with the animal liberation message, but we’ve got one. You know all the stuff out there about Olympian Carl Lewis and his veganism? Yeah, well…

This morning I saw an ad for McDonald’s that featured a bunch of different workers, ranging from entertainers to firefighters, talking about how their first job was flipping burgers at Mickey D’s. In other words, “Look! You can have a crap job and still turn out OK!” In any event, one of the people featured was Carl Lewis. I’d have to say that this one ranks right up there with recording a music video in terms of bad decisions Mr. Lewis has made.

April Contest

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Congratulations to Karen T., winner of the one year subscription to VegNews in March’s contest.

Those that have entered the contest may have noticed that I ask a question in addition to the contact information. I’m not doing any insidious gathering of information for marketing purposes, I’m just genuinely interested in what Veg Blog readers have to say.

March’s question was “What is your favorite thing about being vegetarian or vegan?” I got a lot of the responses you’d expect, “because I’m not harming animals” and “because I feel healthier.” But below are some of the more unique responses that I got:

Being a positive Influence on other people (ex. friends and family now regularly prepare vegan meals at potlucks and get togethers…before i went vegan none of them had heard the word before!)

Improving myself, next stop …hybrid vehicle. ahhh, I’ll just ride a bike!!!

Knowing there’s nothing dead in me. [This reminds me of a phrase that I heard during a world religions class in college that stuck with me for years even before I became vegetarian: “My body’s not a cemetery.”]

That I am setting an example as a compassionate, environmentally and nutritionally aware person for my children.

Being vegan brings people together in the name of a peaceful, cruelty-free lifestyle, and that’s a wonderful feeling to share with others.

I think I’m too focused on being a failed vegan for the past 15 years to remember to think about the good stuff about being vegetarian… [Don’t be too hard on yourself… keep at it and remember all the good you’re doing.]

Too many things … Just being super-awesome-cool? [Can’t] decide.

Being able to look any and every animal in the eyes and feel happy for us both.

Tofutti Cuties

And my favorite:

solving so many problems at once!

With that said, go enter April’s contest, a giveaway for a $15 gift certificate to the mighty, mighty Cosmo’s Vegan Shoppe!

Know Thy Enemy Week #5: Ourselves

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Tricky, tricky! Ending with a clich about being your own worst enemy… bet you didn’t see that coming.

For all the complaining we can do about other people, the industry, and companies with fervent anti-animal policies, we really owe it to ourselves to take a look in the mirror and critically view what we see.

I’m not necessarily talking about “us” in the collective sense, though heaven knows the movement can always use some time for introspection, but “us” in the individual sense. What is it about ourselves that is somehow not helping the animals when we could be?

For lacto-ovo vegetarians, perhaps it’s making that jump to veganism and getting rid of the dairy, eggs, leather, wool, etc. What’s holding you back? What reasoning are you using to make it OK to not be vegan? Is it the “it doesn’t kill the animal” argument? Is it the “veganism is just ‘too far'” argument? Or is it the (sigh) “I like cheese too much” excuse? Take a minute and think about it. Think about the reasoning you’ve been using and pretend you’re a vegan hearing someone else say it. How would you respond?

For vegans, perhaps it’s the honey issue. Are you the way I was when I first went vegan, saying, “Oh, honey’s not a big deal,” eating it anyway? Turn the phrase around. Say it again: “Oh, honey’s not a big deal,” but this time follow it with the phrase “to avoid.” Because it really isn’t. You’d be surprised how extending your circle of compassion this little bit encourages you to find other ways to keep extending it.

For long-time activists, have you become so enveloped in the animal rights culture that you find it hard to relate to omnis? Remember this: one of the best things you can do to save animals is to convince someone else to go vegetarian or vegan. You’ve got to be able to maintain healthy relationships with meat eaters not only to help combat the “crazy vegan” stereotype, but to be able to reach out honestly and sincerely to help show them the cruelties of meat, dairy, and egg production.

Every single one of us could be doing something more to further the cause. For me, it’s the idea of handing out literature or speaking in public to people I don’t know. These things could make a huge difference, but I’ve got to get over my own anxieties. I need to remind myself that the animals can’t speak with words, so it’s up to me to help them out.

What do you need to do to better yourself for the good of the animals? What’s making you your own worst enemy?

(I hope you’ve enjoyed this theme week. There were plenty of other “enemies” I wanted to include, but I’ll save those for another time. Thanks for reading and stick around for another theme week sometime in the near future.)