Everyone is welcome to care about animals. ONE MORE TIME: IT IS NOT ALL OR NOTHING

The Animalist
3 min readAug 30, 2020

Stop seeing things in black and white, in or out.

For a long time, Jasmine didn’t reduce her consumption of animal products, because she didn’t want to miss out on her favourite pizza. Sarah was having dairy and eggs every day because it’s hard to find vegan options when going out. Robert thought he couldn’t be vegetarian because he killed mosquitoes and had to call pest control to get rid off a large colony of rats living in his house.

The message sent by too many animal advocates is that you must be vegan. You must do an endless list of things if you care about animals. Sometimes, this message doesn’t come from vegan organisations but from within ourselves, as in Jasmine, Sarah and Robert’s examples.

This rigid and dogmatic perspective is a significant and pointless block which stops so many of us from 1/ doing a little more and 2/ feeling good about what we are doing.

You don’t need to aim for goals which seem out of reach. You really don’t. Everyone is welcome to care about animals and to take a step.

Nobody expects you to have the highest standards of ethical perfection. Besides, there are many things we have to do which may involve killing or exploiting animals, because we don’t live in an imaginary ideal world. For instance taking medication and vaccinating ourselves and our children, because these are necessities, these are important and valuable aspects of personal and public health. Similarly, nobody’s expected to live with mosquitoes, rats, ants or dangerous spiders in their house — and there isn’t always an animal friendly solution. We know, and that’s ok, it’s the way it is. As society evolves and starts taking animals into account more, solutions may be developed and looked at. In the meantime, nobody needs to be a martyr.

We’re all different, with different situations and what’s easy for Sarah might be out of reach for Robert. Let’s not be judgmental and let’s not attack and undermine efforts to help animals. Let’s praise others and invite everyone to care about animals, about public health, about the environment.

One particularly potent step in order to significantly reduce killing and suffering is to stop eating chickens and to encourage others to stop eating chickens. This is because of the enormous amount of chickens produced and slaughtered every week. It is because they are relatively small animals and as such we need to kill so many more of them in order to eat them. It’s also because of the way they have been manipulated over time to grow as fast as possible, to the detriment of their well-being. — More on this over at One Step For Animals.

If you care about public health, the environment and about animals, it’s great! Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

Don’t listen to dogmatic vegans who love to pretend that it’s either rigid veganism or nothing.

Don’t listen to your inner voice telling you that if you can’t live without some sort of negative impact on animals, then there is no point in doing anything about it.

Thank you.

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The Animalist

A logical, friendly and pragmatic approach to animal advocacy.