True: I’m a vegan.
False: I’m ashamed of that fact.
True: I’m a vegan for ethical reasons first. Health reasons second.
False: I should keep my mouth shut about my eating choices.
False: I should forgive VegNews because they’re a struggling magazine geared towards a special (read: small) audience.
WARNING: Long-winded rant ahead. Proceed at your own risk.
Here’s the truth: I wasn’t going to write about this particular issue, because I was actually going to write about Natalie Portman and her off-again relationship with veganism. If you’re just catching up, she’s preggo and decided to give up veganism (for now) because it’s what her body wanted. Plus, she really likes baked goods. OK, I’m paraphrasing, and I’m certainly not knocking her decision. I roll with the “it’s her body, it’s her right” crowd for most things, and I’m not changing my tune with this just because she’s now a vegetarian instead of a vegan. BUT, and I write this with trepidation, I wish she had been a little bit more considerate in her explanation of wanting to eat baked goods. We all know that vegan baked goods exist in almost every city, and I can attest to the plethora of awesome vegan eats in LaLa Land. So I’m not exactly sure how the baked goods thing is an explanation. I’ve never been pregnant, but I think it’s possible to have a healthy vegan pregnancy, and I wish Nat had been a bit less lackadaisical in her description of the decision. But she has another life to care for, so she can make her own choices without judgement. And that is all I have to say about that.
Now for more fun and scandalous topics:
I know you don’t want to hear this, but being a vegan is not something I always enjoy. Sometimes it sucks. Sometimes I just want to eat out with my friends. Sometimes I want to have brunch on a Saturday post-yoga with Soon-to-be-J.D., and I want to go somewhere other than LPQ. But I’ve chosen this life because I wholeheartedly belive that we don’t need to eat animals to thrive. In fact, I think we thrive when we don’t eat animals.
Which brings me to today’s vegan scandal: VegNews, the premier vegan magazine, has been using stock photos of non-vegan foods to spruce up their vegan recipes and vegan stories for years. Plenty of bloggers have already written about the debacle today, and VegNews came out with a statement to address our concerns. As one might expect from a bunch of passionate, ethical vegans, the reaction has been loud and angry, but also forgiving and understanding.
Here’s what they say: it’s tough to be a magazine nowadays, and there isn’t always money to hire a photographer to take photos of actual vegan food. Hence the use of non-vegan photos to showcase vegan recipes.
OK, let me get this straight: It’s hard to be a magazine. And it’s hard to find vegan stock photos, so you exaust “all options” and “[resort] to using stock photography that may or may not be vegan.”
True: I don’t accept his.
False: I’m worried I’ll offend someone.