By: Grace Abate
Of all the reasons to not eat meat, animal rights is probably the first ones to come to mind. However it is not the only reason to go meat free. Health reasons, environmental reasons, and yes, the animals are all reasons why a non-meat diet is becoming more and more popular.
Emily O’Brien, a Bozeman High School student, hasn’t eaten meat in eight years, and has been vegan for almost a year now. Her main reason is health, not eating animal products helps her stay healthy. Last summer O’Brien went on a vegan cleanse for about three weeks, and says that when she tried to go back to her normal eating habits the foods made her physically ill.
“It does make a difference,” she said.
Many of the vegetarians out there right now are vegetarian because of how hard meat can be on the human body.
However, animal rights is an issue for many as well.
“Someone told me that if I was eating meat I must not like animals that much.” Jessie McCaw said, this was the sentence that tipped the scale towards being a vegetarian for her. Now she’s been vegetarian for five years. A sophomore here at Bozeman High, she does miss meat on occasion, when she can smell a barbeque grilling up some ribs for instance. She gets her protein from cashews, lots and lots of cashews, she doesn’t feel weak, as if she’s missing protein in her diet. McCaw feels healthier with this diet, and she’s more careful about what she eats. She doesn’t find it hard to eat out, “everywhere has something”.
McCaw sent so many complaints to Zoomontana – a business that shut down years ago – about their animal care that they eventually blocked her.
“They were underfunded, so they couldn’t take care of their animals, and they couldn’t take care of their animals because they were underfunded.” She’s always very careful about what makeup and toiletries she buys, checking for the cruelty free logos.
“I feel like it’s a despicable act.” O’Brien says about animal cruelty.
“If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be a vegetarian.” Paul McCartney says, ignorance is sometimes bliss.
As the meat industry tries to make its products less expensive and easier to produce they start to neglect their animals. Oct 2 is World Vegetarian Day, Oct. 2 is World day for Farm Animals. You don’t have to be a vegetarian everyday, but perhaps on these days you could opt for a salad rather than a steak.
By: Grace Abate