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He's NEVER eaten Meat


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Most of you have seen my friend Ben featured on the front page of the main website.

 

For those who haven't, here is a photo of Big Ben. He is 36 and has never eaten meat in his life. He is one of the biggest guys at a bodybuilder's gym where I train.

 

http://www.veganbodybuilding.com/images/bigben/Ben3.jpg

 

Check out Ben's articles on www.veganbodybuilding.com main page or go directly to them here:

 

http://www.veganbodybuilding.com/article/515

 

and

 

http://www.veganbodybuilding.com/article/658

 

Ben is an awesome guy, extremely nice and has been bodybuilding for 16 years so he knows a thing or two about building muscle.

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This guy is HUGE . THat is really cool that he has never put meat in his mouth, he is not responsible for killing any animals. Thanks for the links to the article Rob.

 

Even though it's great to see someone like him representing vegetarian athletes, it's not THAT impressive for people who know much about nutrition.

 

The difference that matters is not whether you eat meat or not, but whether you eat animal-proteins or not. I think you get what I mean...

 

Referring to the quote above: once again, I greatly appreciate it he's a vegetarian, but that doesn't mean he's not responsible for killing any animals. Just think of leather-products and stuff like this.

 

Also, people in general should be more aware of what lies behind "just" eating eggs or drinking milk: mostly it's an animal's "life" full of suffer and torture.

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I know what you mean...........I put him on here to show people that it is possible to get really big without eating meat. Ben can wear size extra large shirts and the sleeves are still tight.

 

Ben, himself will say that it is not that impressive, because vegans and vegetarians are just as capable as anyone else to put on muscle. It's just that you don't see it is often so I wanted to bring some attention to it.

 

As far as the difference between vegans and vegetarians, I know what you mean. I know all about it and I agree with you. Avoiding meat for 36 years is still a positive step and has made an impact so I commend him for that. Most kids growing up vegetarian would probably stray away for a while, but he stuck with it and then started training and became a veggie monster.

 

But I hear what you're saying and being vegan makes a huge impact, so the bigger we can all get, the better (for vegan bodybuilding promotion purposes).

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True that!

 

Me even being vegetarian, like every second guy I talked about this topic asked something like "hey, but your body is missing out on sth, right? That's not healthy..."

 

So in that sense, someone like Ben is perfect to smash all those prejudices that vegs are confronted with!!!

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  • 4 weeks later...

Lelle your so funny!!!!

 

I think the fact that he has NEVER eaten meat is VERY impressive, alomost impossible to believe. Really?? Never as in never ever????

 

Just because he is vegetarian, that does not mean that he wears animal products though. Only Big ben or maybe Rob can asnwer that question for sure. I know that when I irst became vegetarian, I also immediately gave up wearing animal skins. To me, it is all part and parcel of the same beleif - animals are not ours to eat or wear or use in entertainment. Wearing a cow is no less acceptable or ethical than eating one, right???? At least that is how I saw it right from the very start.

 

Anyway, Big ben is still an awesome guy for being animal flesh free for his entire life. That is AMAZING Big Ben. Thanks for caring about the animals and the planet.

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  • 1 month later...

I wish I was raised like Big Ben, becouse my parents always made me believe I would get sick if I didn't eat meat. In The Netherlands everyone makes fun of you when you don't eat meat. For example: If I eat a veggy burger, they call it a faggy burger(I have to give them credit, becouse it is a bit funny). And my parents always say I am annoying becouse I don't want to eat what they eat, even though I have not been sick since being vegetarian, they still bug me.

And about the vegetarian part, it's not as good as vegan, but still beter than eating meat. And I don't wear leather and don't know much about it, but I think it is a by product from meat production. And eggs are not bad, becouse if a male chicken hasn't been near the egg it isn't going to hatch. It is just the same as a woman having her period, that is when the unused eggs are thrown away with some blood(or so I am told). The only thing bad about eggs is the way chickens are abused and put in little cages. But if you have chickens at home I guess it wouldn't be a problem(except for the high amount of cholesterol).

And for milk goes the same. Certain cows produce more milk than their babys need(or so I am told). This doesn't happen in commercial cow farming, so I prefer soy milk.

And although I do not eat meat, I still can't deny it is a natural food source for humans(check the cutting teeth designed for cutting raw meat). But even though it is in the humans instinct to eat meat, I still think it is wrong just like other things humans would do if there wheren't any rules(such as rape and cannibalism). The way I see it, people have evolved a lot since the beginning of time. They went from crawling to standing, so they can go from a meat diet to a vegetable diet.

And how do al you vegans feel about predators? They eat meat, but they are animals(which vegans can't eat).

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i am afraid that you are misinformed.

 

leather is not a by product. it is actually just about the most profitable part of the animal, so has an equal role in the death of the creature as the flesh.

egg farming is directly comprable to the holocaust. as well as the male chicks being crushed/gassed/suffocated at two days old to make feed for their sisters, the female chickens live in tiny cages for their entire life (360 square centimetres is what the US poultry standard is) unless they are 'lucky' enough to be free range where most of them never see the outdoors as the exit is tiny, and if they do its just a barren overcrowded yard.

milk production is insanely cruel. the male calfs are useless for dairy so they are either sold for veal, or castrated (86% of cases without aneasthetic) and sold for beef.

the female cow then has to be impregnated every year to ensure that she produces a regular supply of milk.

the calf is then taken away from the mother at 2days old (immensely distressing for both mother and child) and fed a poor milk substitute, so the mothers milk can be taken.

cows now produce 3times as much milk as in the 1950's, and all cows suffer from mastitis (inflamation of the teat) at some point and most suffer from lameness.

meat is not a natural food source for humans at all. our teeth do not resemble those of a cat, and our guts are far too long for us to eat meat. for instance, a cats gut is only twice as long as its body whereas our small intestines are 20ft long by themselves.

the reason why there is so much more bowel cnacer these days is down to increased meat consumption. it just sits in your belly and rots.

 

as humans have 'evolved' beyond the need to rely on animal products we cannot be excused when we eat them. your average lion or shark does not have the choice as to eat meat or not. besides it is their natural food.

 

i apolagise if i have caused offense but i suffer great ambivilence towards vegetarians. on the one hand they chose not to eat animals, which is commendable, but on the other hand many just replace meat with dairy, which causes no less suffering than if they ate meat.

also in my view, you either accept that animals are there to supply us with food or you dont, you are either a meat eater or vegan. there is no morally/logically defendable halfway point.

 

jonathan

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Well, I was just talking about some exceptions in wich it would be alright to consume dairy and eggs. I do know about the suffering with the production of them, since it is the standard PETA story.

Vegetarians do not contribute to the direct killing of animals. And when consuming other animal products it might be that you are contributing indirectly to the suffering and death of animals. But with everything you buy you support the suffering of animals. Not everyone in the veggieburger factory is a vegan, and not everyone at the post office(wich PETA uses to send their flyers and stuff) is a vegan. Although being vegan is probably the best way of preventing animal cruelty, it doesn't have to be.

I did not know about the leather, so I have learned something today. And I was not offended. And there will always be discussions about whether or not meat is a natural food source for humans.

 

greetings,

 

Gym Hater

 

PS. What does ambivilence mean? I looked it up in the dictionary(I am dutch), but couldn't find it.

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it means feeling two separate conflicting emotions about the same thing.

 

unfortunately vegatarianism does directly cause animal death. for every two egg layers born, one is male, so killed. for every two dairy cows born, one is male so is shipped off to the meat industry, so killed. also when the chicken or cow becomes unproductive, they are killed in exactly the same brutal fashion, at a very young age. it is like humans being prematurely killed aged 25 (based on the fact that dairy cows are killed at 5 when they live for 20years and chickens being killed at 2 when they live for 10years).

peta is a bit ridiculous anyway. they are obsessed with celebrity culture and quite frequently make media mistakes where they create a lot of bad press. i honestly think, that whilst they are good intentioned, the animal rights cause would be better off without them.

 

jonathan

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That is true, but what I mean by direct and indirect is: If you eat meat you eat a dead animal, thus directly contributing to the death of atleast one animal becouse there is no other way of getting meat.

By consuming dairy and eggs, it might also be that you are contributing to the suffering and death of an animal, but it does not have to. You can also have some pet chickens(which of course you give a happy life in you backyard), and take some of their eggs(which would't hatch becouse you do not have a male chicken).

The in-directly contributing to animal death is the killing of the male cows and such(like you described), but this can be prevented by not buying the dairy and eggs in the store. You can seek individuals whom have pet chickens, goats, cows etc. and buy dairy and eggs from them.

 

So vegetarians do NOT contribute directly to the killing of animals, unless they wear leather(which I learned today). However, they do indirectly contribute to the killing of animals, but so do vegans, since there is no way of escaping that becouse 99% of the money you spend will be supporting the killing of animals in some way.

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i disagree. whilst i am realistic that some of the businesses i support will use that money to buy animal products, nearly all of our shopping is done at veggie wholefood shops and we generally only eat at veggie places. being vegan is simply doing your utmost to limit any animal suffering. there is no way to limit it any further.

 

regarding pet animals - having pet chickens is not justifiable unless you rescue spent hens from slaughter. buying chicks is as bad as buying caged hen eggs. the same goes for cows, goats and sheep. but who honestly has the space to house chickens, let alone a cow.

 

i still disagree with the claim that dairy is indirect killing:

 

a) you eat beef, you kill a cow - direct killing

b) you eat cheese, male cow dies as it is useless, female cow killed when it no longer produces enough milk - direct killing.

 

it is also irrelevent whether or not is direct or not, being veggie still causes unnecessary death and suffering. instead of the animal simply suffering until it is fat enough to eat, if has to live much longer, under equally terrible conditions before it reaches the same cruel death.

 

there is no ethical argument for vegetariaism - it is a state which many people reach so as they can satisfy their feelings of guilt about exploiting animals. it barely reduces animal suffering and is dangerous as it stops many potential vegans from taking the logical, final step.

 

jonathan

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@jonathan: Maybe the moral difference could be that you accept the death of an animal, but don't want to eat the corpse of it.

 

My final step of becoming a vegan by the way, is to quit cheese. i have no problem with milk or eggs, but sometimes I can't stand a good Pizza.

 

 

But back to your discussion! you listed pretty much all the important arguments for becoming a vegan, so I better copy, paste and safe it on my computer. so whenever somebody asks me sth like "what's so bad about drinking milk?", I'm gonna simply give him your text.

 

 

being vegan is simply doing your utmost to limit any animal suffering.

 

The only question is: how perfect to you want to bè? Where does it stop?

 

 

When you go out with your friends or family to a normal restaurant (or maybe even McD). Will you eat some at that place? You could argue that the money you give them benefits the restaurant and in return they can better keep going selling meat.

or do you see it the way that you order a vegan food and in return maybe the restaurant starts putting more vegan foods to their card to attract vegans more?

 

Do you drive a car? It destroys our planet, man! If you want to limit animal suffering as much as possible you can't do that...

 

I mean, those are are more or less stupid questions, I know. I just wanted to show how difficult it is "to do your utmost".

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this was my last trip to mcdonalds - im the tall topless guy.

 

%5Bimg%5Dhttp%3A//img.photobucket.com/albums/v231/bob280784/37722.jpg[/img]

 

i dont drive a car as they are unnecessary and not morally justifiable in the city where i live as public transport is excellent.

 

i rarely ever go to non veggie restuarants and do most of my grocery shopping with veggie shops and a vegan buying group.

 

i know that it is impossible to be perfect but it is quite easy to do alot.

 

i am glad that you can use some of things that i have posted

 

jonathan

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my god my written german sucks. i am half german and my spoken german has always been good. just my spelling that lets me down.

 

Es ist jest 4 jahre als Ich zum letzen mal in Duetschland gewissen bin. Ich muss viel Duesch lessen, das Ich es verbessern kann.

 

i apologise in advance for the spelling!

 

jonathan

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There is a way the vegetarianism does directly contrbiute to the death of animals... Rennet and gelatin. There are many vegetarians that still eat yogurt which has gelatin in it, and it is an animal product only produced from dead animals, the same with Rennet. Rennet is used in cheese. I am not sure for what purpose. There are cheeses without rennet, but mozarella usually has it. I am sure there are other examples but i just wanted to put some weight on johnathan's argument.

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Of course, me being me, I canot help but join in this debate.

 

Jonathan, after many hours of quiet self-reflection and brutal self-honesty, I see that what you say - about how vegetarians are vegetarian primarily to reduce the suffering of their own consciences first and foremost - is true. I have been interrogating my soul for hours and trying to find the truth about why it took me so long to go from being meat free, to also being egg, cheese and milk free. My vegetarianism came with an immediate awareness of the immorality of wearing animals too. The moment I stopped eating animal flesh I also stopped wearing it (i have always felt that if an animal is unethical in your mouth, then it is just as unethical on your back or on your feet). But, I continued eating cheese, milk and eggs. After being brutally honest with myself and interrogating my soul, I know why. It is because I told myself the following thoughts and convinced myself of the following:

 

"Well, I may not be vegan, but at least I am vegetarian, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of the rest of the human population. SO I am clearly doing more than most people to at least make some effort at reducing animal suffering and thus I should be given a pat on the back! At least I have made this huge sacrifice of giving up flesh."

 

So your right, Jonathan. My vegetarianism was a way for me to feel less guilty about my contribution to animal exploitation, especially because I loved animals so much - i needed to do SOMETHING to make myself feel less hypcritical, and more morally "enlightened". And vegetarianism did that for me. At least for a few years. Fortunately, my love for animals proved, in the end, to be stronger than my self-delusion and my selfishness. Although I am NO WHERE NEAR a perfect vegan, I now accept that eggs, milk and cheese are no less benign than actual dead animal flesh. having said that, I still in moments of weakness allow the devil to get the better of me and I give in to a scoop of ice cream or a whey protein shakeor whatever, but thankfully, this is the exception rather than the norm, and after each "slip", I am hard on myself. I no longer try to console myself with delusional thoughts like the ones I noted above.

 

So I agree with Jonathan in that vegetarianism can be dangerous to the extant that it makes people's consciences feel lighter, but this is falsely lighter - they havent in actual fact undertaken a lifestyle that makes a meaningful or significant impact in reducing animal suffering. The only suffering that vegetarianism really reduces is the suffering of that person's concsience.

 

Having said that though, it is interesting to note that many people who are now vegan were FIRST vegetarian (I dont have actual stats, but I am just speaking from my experiecnes with vegans). In fact, I think most people on this board were veg first before they went vegan. My point is that I think it is unlikely that a die heard carnivore is going to take what would to her seem like a radical, alomost impossible step and go from carnivore to vegan in one step. That is just too huge of a change, and as a person who has many meat eating friends who wont even consider VEGETARIANISM, I really do think that this is unlikely to be the course of one's evolution in consciousness. SO, I think you might get people to go vegan first by getting them to go veg. AT least vegetarians already have some demonstrated awareness of the ethical issues involved (however limited that awareness currently is), and, more importantly, a willingness to listen and to be receptive to ethical arguments and animal rights concerns.

 

Again, after honest and brutal self-relfection, I asked myself: Would natalie have gone vegan right off the bat if she was first presented to animal rights through a vegan path instead of a welfarist or vegetarian path? yes, I would have gone from meat eater to straight vegan. BUT that is only because I have compassion and love for all animals. Not everybody though is like us. I know people who love animals (have pets of all kinds), and would even help a chichen or a pig in need. yet, after presenting them with all the literature, etc. they STILL refuse to go even at least vegetarian, which, in my opinion, is the LEAST that the whole world can do right here, right now. There is simply NO EXCUSE not to be at the very least, vegetarian! yet the fact of the matter is that most people are too selfish and self-indulgent to be even that!!

 

So I am ambivalent towards vegetarianism for the above reasons. On the one hand, I totally see what Jonathan means about it doing nothing more than easing people's guilty consciences. yet, on the other hand, many (though certainly not all) of us on these boards were vegetarian first, before we were vegan, and some people might have ran the other way if they were asked to go from meat eating straight to veganism. So hard core veganism right off the bat might alienate potential vegans in this way too, thereby also having the same undesired effect of vegetarianism described by Jonathan.

 

All I know is that while I am by no means perfect, I try to always be honest with myself about the implications of my choices, and, even though I am probably too undisciplined, morally weak and lazy to be a perfect or even "hard core" vegan, I hope that continued honesty and self-reflection will at least keep me on the right path, heading in the right direction. And I believe that hard core veganism is the path that every human being should set for themselves and strive for, as it is the only moral thing to do.

 

Because, in the end, there is at least one truth out there that is indeed "Truth" with a capital "T", and that is that animals have the right to live their lives, free from human molestation, interference, or exploitation, and that they are NOT means to human ends. period. THis is not a political consideration, or an opinion that is subject to debate, in my opinion and indeed I am sure in all of our opinons. IT is plain, cold hard truth - as plain as the sun and the sky and the moon. i try to stay focused on that and measure my actions against that maxim which my heart and my mind believes in 100%. Sometimes I may fall short, (and I make myself morally sick when I do) but thankfully, most of the time, I dont. And I continue to draw inspiration and strength from people like you, Kollision, Robert, Ash, and all the others who are hard core, unrelenting and uncompromising vegans - people who set the standard and remind us daily that there is NO EXCUSE for anything less.

 

 

And as much as I would like to think of myself as an enviro rights person too, I do drive a car. But the good news on that front is that I saw a news piece the other day about this piece that you connec to your cars exhaust system or something and it causes your car to emit less emissions and polutants than a lighter!!!!!!!!!!!!! The item is expensive - it costs like $1500 or sonmething, but I dont care. The second that I save enouygh money I am buying it. It is one thing to be selfish and want to drive a car, but it is another to refuse a newly invented environment protecting device because it is too expensive. Frankly, I think it should be mandatory for all cars.

 

And there is my two cents for the night.

 

EDITTED TO ADD: Before I get any more hate mail from all you ova-lacto vegetarians, let me mke something perfectly clear. I am speaking about my OWN reasons for having taken so long to give up eggs and dairy. It is because what Jonathan says about vegetarians was true IN MY CASE. And it took a great deal of self-honesty for me to come to that conclusion. Of course, as a vegetarian, I did not want to admit this to myself and was annoyed by vegans who told me that I wasnt being "ethical enough." But now I see that they were right. It is just as hard to justify supporting the egg or dairy industries as it is to justify supporting the meat industry is the realization and the revelation that converted me from ova - lacto to strict vegetarian (or what some of you would call vegan).

Edited by compassionategirl
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thankyou for that long and beautifully honest post compassionate girl.

 

i do not mean to reduce the value of vegetarianism as a short term transition state whilst people are going from meat eater to vegan - i was veggie for 10months (though it was nearly only 8months - but once i had decided to go vegan i went immediatly to nepal for 2months. i had no idea what i was doing so was veggie until i got back to the uk) before going vegan.

as you say, vegetarianism is simply not a morally justifiable permanent state. its almost like saying 'i boycott nestle coffee (called nescafe here) but am happy to buy other nestle products'. vegetarianism makes no sense and it is as illogical as the example above.

 

i wish you the best of luck with being vegan

 

jonathan

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thankyou for that long and beautifully honest post compassionate girl.

 

i do not mean to reduce the value of vegetarianism as a short term transition state whilst people are going from meat eater to vegan ... vegetarianism is simply not a morally justifiable permanent state.

 

 

I agree J (emphasis above my own).

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