You cannot have a useful discussion intended to change the behavior of another if you approach that other person as someone who is evil. That’s just common sense.
So always make sure that the person with whom you are talking understands that you are focusing on the immorality of animal exploitation as an institutionalized practice and that you are not judging that person as an individual. Approach that person as someone who has not yet really grappled with the issues involved in animal ethics and you are there to educate—and not to judge.
On the other hand, you should always be clear that veganism is a moral imperative. That is, if animals have moral value—if they are not just things—then our moral obligation is to stop eating, wearing, and using them. Anything less than that represents continued and direct participation in animal exploitation.
If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself.
If animals matter morally, veganism is not an option—it is a necessity. Anything that claims to be an animal rights movement must make clear that veganism is a moral imperative.
Learn more about veganism at www.HowDoIGoVegan.com.
Gary L. Francione
Board of Governors Distinguished Professor, Rutgers University Law School
©2016 Gary L. Francione