|Enewsletter • June 4, 2008|
Notes from Vegan Outreach
Link of the Week: Is Being Vegetarian Important?
The text of a talk as prepared by Matt Ball (at right; photo by Jon Camp), discussing the different responses to the truth about modern agribusiness. Also includes a discussion of free-range / "happy" meat.
Products of the Week -- Whole Foods Edition
Jackie: Sunshine Burgers are probably the best veggie burger I have ever had! Very few ingredients and nothing you can't pronounce. I buy them at Whole Foods.
Jamie: Uncle Eddie's Vegan Cookies. They are by far the best vegan cookies I've had! You can get them at Whole Foods.
Notes from All Over
As pointed out by Jack Norris and Matt Ball in "A New World, Piece by Piece," there are many steps required to move from a carnivorous society, where farmed animals have virtually no protection, to a vegan society where they have near-total protection.
Another step was taken this past week, with KFC Canada agreeing to do everything PETA has called for. The hope, of course, is that KFC in the U.S. and around the world will have to follow suit, since they can no longer claim that these steps are unreasonable or too expensive -- two of their key claims. Furthermore, a vegan faux chicken will be introduced in nearly two thirds of Canadian KFCs, which will make trying a meat-free diet even more convenient for more people!
Notes from Our Members
Several months ago,
I received your booklet.
I had been raised in a traditional
New England, middle-class family
as a meat eater. Reading your pamphlet
on my way home from class, I had
an epiphany. How could I have been
so uninformed and oblivious to the
brutal, cruel treatment of factory
farmed animals?! Subsequently, I
swore off meat completely and am
striving to shed dairy products
and eggs from my diet.
vegan in 1995, I
have distributed tens of thousands
of Vegan Outreach leaflets in a
dozen states (and counting). Although
I started using VO literature early
on in my activism, I still felt
that leafleting by itself wasn't
as effective as protesting every
weekend. I couldn't have been more
wrong, especially when I looked
at the amount of time I spent organizing
protests, calling activists to attend
the protests, making signs, etc.
Maybe I felt that since I had invested
so much time and effort, protesting
had to be more effective than simply
handing out leaflets for an hour
or two. Thank goodness that Vegan
Outreach continues to steer activists
in the right direction!
In downtown Niagara
Falls, ON, I saw a
lady an hour after I'd given her
a leaflet, who said, "I was
a vegetarian for six months, and
I just started eating meat again
a month ago. After seeing these
pictures, I'm becoming a vegetarian
Omnia Ibrahim and I leafleted "Pets
Are Worth Saving," the largest
dog and cat adoption event in Chicago.
The reception level was awesome.
Many people reported being vegetarian
or vegan (especially among the event
volunteers) and of those, several
thanked me for being there. Many
of the volunteers were working with
non-veg*n friends and urged them
to accept a leaflet. One volunteer
eagerly offered to keep a stack
of 20 or so on her table, and Omnia
reported another volunteer asking
for 5-10 to hand out as she collected
donations. The most notable moment
was near the end of the afternoon,
when I overheard a family with a
dog talking about how they were
thinking of going vegetarian. They
were still holding the leaflets
I had given them about an hour earlier.
I gave them a couple GCFEs
and some encouragement.
Nikki Benoit leaflets the Taste of Pinellas, St. Pete, FL.
While leafleting an
Iron Maiden concert,
perhaps as many as 10% of recipients
cried out violently after getting
the leaflet, throwing them down
and shouting four letter words.
Yet 90% who took them were reading
them as they walked, some discussing
the booklets with others in their
group. From my perspective, the
negative responses were irrelevant.
They were honest cries of protest
from being shown something they
did not want to see. But we know
from the start that not everyone
will respond in a positive way.
All that matters is the number of
people who took the leaflet and
read it. Those people leave far
more enlightened than when they
came in. We can't dwell on the negative,
but must instead focus on the many
who, because of our efforts, will
change their behavior and drastically
reduce the amount of suffering they
Just wanted to say
thank you! For whatever
reason the VO weekly newsletter
went to my spam folder this week,
and after rescuing it, it was a
pleasure and an inspiration, as
always. Almost losing it to the
spam filter made me realize how
much I would miss the little burst
of vegan sunshine in my week.