The Ithaca Vegans Facebook group has been really active lately. Recent postings include educational events, social gatherings, and activist opportunities. Join if you want to connect with other Ithaca-area vegan folks!
Richard Turere, a 13-year-old Maasai from Kenya, invented a solar-powered solution to lions killing cows, and humans killing lions: A device that mimics the look of a person walking with a flashlight, to scare lions away from cow sheds, preventing humans from lethal retaliation against the endangered predators.
Vegans may be interested in educating themselves about the Maasai, who present some very interesting questions regarding animal exploitation. They are able to live in desert and scrublands that are otherwise uninhabitable, and are extremely self-sufficient. And yet their way of life could not continue without the exploitation of cows. A debate between a fundamentalist abolitionist vegan and a Maasai person would be very interesting!
Via NPR; photo by James Duncan Davidson
This just in from Food Not Bombs Ithaca! Please donate if you can, or pass this on to people who can donate, if you can’t. Thanks!
This Saturday, as many of you probably know, Watermargin will be hosting a teach in on Antifascism in Greece and Europe. Ithaca’s Food Not Bombs chapter will be providing dinner for the attendees, and we’ve been out of commission for a while, so we’re going to need to rustle up some food in time for the event. If anyone has anything they’d like to donate in support- staples such as rice or flour, spices, herbs – or can contribute knowhow as to where we might be able to get food, it’d be greatly appreciated! Any interested parties can contact me at 508-395-9802. Love and Solidarity, Sophie Griswold – svg6 at cornell.edu
Do we love them or hate them? Do we respect them or not? Are we troubled enough by the inconsistent and sometimes exploitative and violent ways we treat them, to change our actions? Read the rest of this entry »
Check out Anjali Sareen’s This Is What Vegans Eat article and slideshow on Huffington Post. She does a great job of showing a wide variety of foods that vegans enjoy and that are also really accessible to non-vegans. Get ready for some more photos of chocolate chip cookies, lasagne, tacos, and ice cream that will get your tummy rumbling.
Watch what happens when a subway “preacher” tries to spread his heterosexism and homophobia and hate: A gay subway passenger stands up for himself and gets the whole car cheering for him by saying, “Jesus loves me!… Jesus is love! We can hear your falsehoods! There’s love in this train!… Love wins!”
I love this video for two reasons:
I also want to thank my freshman year roommate, Mer, and another one of our dorm-mates, Jesse, for having the courage to stand up one night at dinner, proclaiming, “I love Jesus!” It shocked me at the time because I hadn’t seen anyone progressive, any non-bigot, say something like that before, so exuberantly and honestly and earnestly, and from such a beautiful place of open-hearted love. If it wasn’t for those two people, and the influence of Hugh and his stories of radical Catholics (thank you Hugh!), I wouldn’t have come around to where I am now. My family has been wounded in the past by unjust and oppressive interpretations of religious scripture, and it’s taken me some time to get over my prejudice against religions and to find God in my own way. (Thanks to Josh A. for help in that department!)
Well, not entirely! Read my bio for contradictions aplenty. But veganism does allow you to avoid a lot of, shall we say, moral discomfort. I remember worrying a lot more about the impacts of my actions before I went vegan – it was a source of stress for me to think I might be causing suffering (as indeed I was). Once I took the plunge and went vegan, I felt very free. That’s why I think of veganism as a liberatory process.
For instance, I used to say “I love pigs.” And yet if Facebook had existed when I was a carnist, I may have posted photos of a cute piglet on a farm without thinking very much about how he was about to be separated from his mother and would one day face a trip to the slaughterhouse, or about how this farm I’m seeing in this image isn’t at all like the horrific, factory-like farms on which the vast majority of piglets are raised. I may have posted recipes that included “free-range” pork sausage. Back then, I would not have seen the contradiction, but I know I often felt oddly “not right” about my decisions. And I felt really bad when I heard people mention the slaughterhouse, because no matter how much the small farmers we were supporting said what they were doing was humane, I had a hard time imagining what that might look like.
Today, I have a different perspective. I say, “I love pigs,” but I think it’s more important that now I know I should say, even more importantly, “I respect pigs,” because they are not objects for me to desire or want or eat or use or confine or buy or sell. They are individual persons, just like me, who desire autonomy and freedom.
I know that’s good for me personally. But even better, I think it’s really good for the animals I used to exploit, before I realized there was a way to opt out of the violence I was causing.