If the pilgrims had been vegetarians, we would be calling
Thanksgiving "Happy Cranberry Day!" For many, the holidays
are a time of family, friends, conversation, and the
standard American pastime of eating a creature that
once had feelings. As a member of the compassionate
few, I will enjoy the festivities by not having a Thanksgiving
turkey or Christmas ham, for both the animals' and my
This year, at a well-known chain grocery store, I proudly
informed the public about the cruelty inflicted on turkeys
everywhere, from factory-style farms to "free-range"
farms. I alerted them to the great suffering and death
that turkeys endure to end up on their holiday tables.
I leafleted a few days before Thanksgiving, and I believe
my actions were significant. Most people willingly accepted
my flyers, and I felt good that they were left with
the knowledge that they don't need to consume another
Unfortunately, after handing out only about half of
my flyers, I was asked to leave the store. Not deterred,
I handed out the remainder of the flyers at the local
food co-op. Many of the customers who read my flyers
were already vegetarian, but I hoped that those who
weren't vegetarian had been presented with a new perspective:
animals aren't ours to eat.
By my and other advocates' actions during the holidays,
more people will be informed to make ethical decisions
about their food. My future plans include protesting
against fur, leather, wool, and the Christmas ham and
e x t e s s a y -
Copyright © 1998-2013 by Jo Stepaniak
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