Dispelling arguments against veganism


Photo credit: Chase Falk

Nicole Henson

The stereotype of vegans is heavy and for good reason. No one enjoys PETA videos of baby calves being murdered on their social media pages or being scrutinized in restaurants because they asked for extra bacon.

Maybe this in-your-face approach is the result of a fad taken too far by modern day flower children, but we have a point nevertheless.

The greenhouse gas emissions arising every year from the production and consumption of meat is roughly the amount emitted by 6.5 million to 19.6 million SUVs. This means every time a person is consuming a cheeseburger they are contributing to the release of methane gas into the atmosphere.

The majority of my deciding factors to become vegan were composed of questioning why we eat animals in the first place. Arguments for eating meat are incomprehensible to me because I think consuming meat products is flat-out weird.

Here are a few of my favorite counter-arguments that meat eaters have thrown at me over the past 10 years.


First of all, it is proven that Americans often exceed the necessary amount of protein needed to meet a healthy diet. Not to mention animal protein as opposed to plant protein is proven to be correlated with heart disease and cancer.

A diet full of red meat puts you at much more of a health risk than a diet full of plant foods. The belief that being vegan will result in malnutrition is a fallacy. Being educated about the needed nutrients is the real issue. Living off of the value menu at McDonald’s as an omnivore or a vegan is just as unhealthy.

God put animals on Earth for humans to eat

I’m not religious and I am in no way mocking those who are. But anyone who has come at me with this argument has had no factual evidence to base it off. When I have done my research and have ample points of why I do not eat meat, I refuse to debate with someone who can’t back up their statements.

If you think about humans and animals in similar ways, mothers breastfeed their newborns just as cows produce milk for their offspring. With this in mind, why is it okay to drink another species milk even despite all the negative effects it has on our bodies?

Our teeth were made to tear into meat

This argument is only sound if someone never learned how to properly use a fork or was born thousands of years ago. If someone is making this claim, I expect to see them catch and kill their prey with their claws before consumption.

It’s expensive

Society has made meat products easily accessible compared to non-meat products. Vegan substitutes are often more expensive than the real thing. The price of the lifestyle is the most viable argument that a meat eater can have, especially if you are in college.

To me spending the extra money on veggie options is an inconvenience, but not a reason to eat a dead animal. We’re willing to frivolously spend our limited funds on booze every week, but throw a tantrum about having to spend the extra dollar for a veggie burger. A bag of potatoes can go a long way and it costs under $5.

It’s radical

I am tired of being labeled as an extremist because I don’t eat meat. I see the consumption of a rotting carcass that was killed solely for human’s sensory pleasure as extreme. Killing living beings for no reason other than because ‘they taste good’ is extreme.

I am not disgusted by the taste of meat, most vegans aren’t. I solely believe that eating meat and dairy products is an anthropocentric concept western culture has instilled in itself.

There are plenty of reasons that people will provide to discredit vegans, but at the end of the day, it’s a personal choice. No one other than your mother is going to make you eat vegetables, so the option to get that extra piece of bacon is ultimately your choice.

Nicole Henson can be reached at [email protected] or @theorion_news on Twitter.