Vegans: don’t use language that doesn’t belong to you
This is an exclusive excerpt from my book Fat Gay Vegan: Eat, Drink and Live Like You Give a Sh!t. Published by Nourish.
An important exercise in flexing your compassion has to do with respecting language that doesn’t belong to you or to veganism.
One sure fire way to NOT be the kindest and most compassionate vegan you can is to appropriate the language and imagery of oppressive struggles as a way to draw attention to the animal rights movement.
Many activists find themselves comparing industrialised farming to slavery or the Holocaust. It is alluring to reach for something so undeniable in its horror, renown and infamy to conjure emotion and grab attention but what you are also doing is minimising the reality of what people went through and are still living through today.
Industrialised farming has enough of its own atrocities that can be explained in clear language attributable to that distinct situation. There is no need to use language that does not belong to the vegan movement.
Historical and current references related to slavery, genocide and sexual violence against humans are not ours to use as we please. It is harmful and disrespectful to do so.
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