- Published: Tuesday, 28 August 2018 13:45
I'm a vegetarian -- and when I say "I," I'm talking about Bogdan D., the owner of Etiquette Systems. I don't eat meat for personal reasons, but it doesn't bother me that others choose to. In fact, we happen to make someone the best self-adhesive meat labels in the industry.
What does bother me is to see vegans, who eschew all forms of violent against animals—especially their slaughter for food—perpetrate violence against humans instead. We've all seen stories of them splashing furs with red paint, but while it's clear vandalism, that's not true violence. But lately, some French vegans has taken it upon themselves to attack butcher shops.
I'm not talking about slaughterhouses, but boutique butchers where small numbers of animals are killed as humanely as possible and their meat sold to a select group of customers who take pride in traditional cuts of meat produced in traditional ways. These are Mom-and-Pop shops we're talking here, not chain stores. The owners often know everything about the origins of the meat they sale, often including how it was raised, what it was fed, and even when some of the animals were born and died.
As vegans splash the neat little shops with paint, scrawl graffiti threats, and even break windows—a huge expense for a small business owner—the butchers are running scared. They know that all it takes is one person going overboard to step over the line from militant activism to terrorism. To most of them, it's already reached the dangerous harassment phase.
These are exactly the kind of people we make meat labels for, or provide the raw materials to do so. We have to denounce the actions of these vegans as going too far, and ask them to stop. Yes, most people do know it's possible to survive on a vegetarian diet without health risks. But many people, especially those of the older generations, have not yet made the switch and are not be willing to. Meat is part of their diets. Humans are omnivores; Mother Nature made us able to eat almost anything, and meat is a handy protein source. It will not be easy for the entire population, or even a significant portion of it, to shift to vegetarianism—no matter how good it is for the planet. And it won't happen through violence.
Let's focus on the same types of debate, and rapport vegetarians, vegans, and non-vegetarians have had for years. If it happens that my company has to phase out meat labels because other forms of food became predominant, I would do so happily. But while no one has been hurt yet, violence and threats of violence will have an effect opposite of what vegans want—and it will take a great deal of work to regain what you've lost over the years. Please, stop the violence before it gets out of hand.