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MANEKA GANDHI: Veganism as political movement is the only way to combat Carnism

Veganism needs less consumerism and more compassion. It must become a political movement and a form of boycott, with individuals and communities refusing to put money into harmful industries.

MANEKA GANDHI: ‘Veganism must become a political movement. At the moment it is nowhere near that, anywhere in the world. And the fault lies with vegans themselves. What is the current state? [Consumer] capitalism has made it easy for every human to literally eat up the world. Every animal species, every forest, every ore in the ground, every fish in the sea, has been turned into trivial things to fuel insatiable greed. As soon as one species becomes extinct we find another one.

Our oceans are now full of jellyfish who have filled the emptiness caused by taking a billion fish out of the ocean every month. Hugely poisonous and of no edible value, seven nations have, nevertheless, got together to see what they can turn jellyfish into. As mammals and birds dwindle, the food companies are promoting insects as the “new” protein.

What can a vegan do? To begin with, stop buying. Everything you buy, vegetarian or non-vegetarian, has its consequences and impact… Vegan- or non-vegan- consumer capitalism is responsible for the destruction of the entire natural world. Veganism means addressing all these issues. Less consumption—not more—should be part of every real vegan’s mantra…

Secondly, vegans must realise that they should not confuse veganism with all the other labels. Unfortunately, it is competing: not with meat, milk and leather, but with “organic” “locally sourced”. Most retailers say that they have stopped advertising “organic” and replaced it with “vegan”. It is hopelessly confused with healthy, raw food and gluten-free. The advertising agencies are toying with your head, and making all the wrong mental associations, by providing completely unnecessary items with the vegan label…

Vegans must make political lobbies and compete with carnism. Carnism, the… philosophy of eating meat and using animals, has caused global warming, with 15 percent of greenhouse emissions coming from cattle farming alone. And then is the deforestation by clearing land for animal farming… Veganism must be a form of boycott, with individuals/communities refusing to put money into harmful industries…

The vegan community needs less consumerism and more compassion. It needs to put the animals first again. Don’t go shopping, support the building of forests, animal sanctuaries, liberate animals from exploitation — like not buying medicines that are needlessly tested on animals — don’t go to zoos, vote for green politicians, refuse to let trees be cut for trains. Put activism over entrepreneurship. And don’t make the excuse that at first, you will earn money through producing vegan products, and then you will spend it on saving the world’. SOURCE…

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