Carmela Mendoza Carmela’s “Modest Proposal”
Literature 12, Block G
Humans in developed countries are aware of the horrendous habitat destruction and damage that the planet Earth is undergoing, the ongoing poverty in developing countries, and the cruelty treatment that animals receive in order to supply humans with food. These situations may seem irreparable, though there is a quick and easy solution: becoming vegan.
Being vegan means not using/consuming any products that came from an animal, regardless of whether the animal was killed or not to obtain that product. The developed world has access to technology and the knowledge to prove that it is unnecessary to have to kill animals to remain healthy/survive. Dr. Jane Goodall’s research has shown that “animals have distinct personalities, minds and emotions,” 1 so it is heartless of humans to kill or use animals for their own benefit. Animals and nature have already been so affected by humans that they should just be left alone to live and grow in peace.
As vegan author Joseph Pace said in
an interview for
There are many vegan products on the
market today.3 Vegans can completely remove animal-derived products
from store shelves if the vegan products sell at a greater rate than the
animal-derived products because this would force the companies who make
animal-derived products to come up with vegan products that will be in higher
demand. Additionally, some companies who
sell meat products already market vegan-friendly products already, for example
An example of the land that could be saved by people converting to veganism is the Amazon rainforest, currently used for farmland by many Brazilian cattle ranchers.5 In this situation, more and more virgin rainforest of the Amazon is being burnt down to make room for cattle ranches and nutrients from the rainforest’s soil are being used up by the farmer’s crops to sustain the cattle.6 If more people were vegan, then burning of the rainforest for cattle ranches would be unnecessary and acres of rainforest could be saved.
Right now, the amount of grain used to feed cattle in the beef industry is enough to feed entire countries that are affected with poverty. If there were no beef industry, the grain that would have been used to feed cows could be used to feed the hungriest of humans instead. People in poor countries could keep from starving and sustainably feed themselves if vegan products were imported or donated to their countries and they were educated on how to sustainably grow their own food, receive nutrition, and keep from harming the environment.
The vegan diet contains all the necessary vitamins and nutrients a person needs daily. With the proper education, individuals can easily discover that switching to veganism is not very difficult at all. There are many commonly eaten dishes that are enjoyed by vegans and non-vegans alike. As long as an individual is correctly informed of how to maintain a balanced diet while living the vegan lifestyle, he/she should have no health problems associated with being vegan.
Veganism has many benefits – it makes less of an impact on the environment, it is more sustainable (helps preserve the earth for future generations), and it is an easy and healthy way alternative to animal products. Veganism is also a very sensible and environmentally conscious lifestyle revolutionizing the twenty-first century. All should be aware of veganism and perhaps give it a try today.
1. The Jane Goodall Institute, “Jane Goodall: An Extraordinary
Life,” Jane Goodall, http://www.janegoodall.com/jane/default.asp.
2. Eileen Nicolle, “Meat, schmeat,” The Silhouette,
3. TheVegetarianSite, “Vegan Shopping,” TheVegetarianSite,
4. PETAKiDS.com, “Accidentally Vegan,” SHOP! SHOP! SHOP!,
5. Rhett A. Butler, “Deforestation in the Amazon 2004,” mongabay.com,
6. Phil Camill, “The Deforestation of the Amazon:
A Case Study in Understanding Ecosystems and Their Value,”
, Carleton College