Why I Will Always Be a Vegan
Richard H. Schwartz, Ph.D.
I will always be a vegan because the vegan diet is the diet most consistent with Jewish teachings on preserving human health, treating animals with compassion, protecting the environment, conserving natural resources, helping hungry people, and pursuing peace.
I will always be a vegan because animal-based diets contribute significantly to heart disease, several forms of cancer, strokes, and other killer diseases.
I will always be a vegan because animal-based agriculture is a major contributor to climate change, deforestation, soil erosion, deforestation, water pollution, rapid species losses, and other environmental threats to humanity.
I will always be a vegan because animal-based diets require far more land, water, energy, and other resources per person than vegan diets.
I will always be a vegan because of the widespread, horrific mistreatment of billions of animals on factory farms before they are slaughtered.
I will always be a vegan because, at a time when an estimated 20 million people worldwide die annually of hunger and its effects and almost a billion of the world’s people are chronically hunger, 70 percent of the grain produced in the U.S. is fed to animals destined for slaughter.
I will always be a vegan because in an increasingly thirsty world, with glaciers melting, aquifers shrinking, and lakes drying, it takes up to 14 times as much water for a person on an animal-based diet than for a person on a plant-based diet.
I will always be a vegan because it is my way to protest against the “madness and sheer insanity” that animal-based diets represent.
I will always be a vegan because it is arguably the most important thing I can do for my health, animals, the environment, the efficient use of natural resources, hungry people, and efforts toward a more peaceful, just world.
I will always be a vegan because only if many people become vegans will we have a chance to help shift our imperiled planet onto a sustainable path.
I will always be a vegan because there are so many delicious, nutritious vegan foods that can keep me in good health, without having to harm animals or damage the environment.
Richard H. Schwartz, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus, College of Staten Island
Author of Judaism and Vegetarianism, Judaism and Global Survival, Mathematics and Global Survival, and Who Stole My Religion? Revitalizing Judaism and Applying Jewish Values to Help Heal Our Imperiled Planet, and 200 articles at JewishVeg.com/schwartz
President Emeritus, Jewish Vegetarians of North America (www.JewishVeg.com); President, Society Of Ethical and Religious Vegetarians (SERV):
Associate producer of A SACRED DUTY (www.aSacredDuty.com);
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