I chose to talk to my next door neighbor who is a huge animal rights activist and a huge environmentalist as well. Unfortunately she decided that she didn’t want to be recorded last minute, and I didn’t have time to find another person. She let me briefly transcribe it.
Disclaimer: Not word for word, shortened to fit
Me: How does keeping an entirely plant based diet help the environment?
Katelyn: There’s a million reasons to why a plant based diet is beneficial to yourself and the Earth, but I’ll focus on the environment for now. First off, producing meat takes way more resources and water to raise a pound of beef than it is to produce like a pound of brown rice. When you raise cattle for beef or dairy, they release an immense amount of methane just from the breathing and passing gas of the cattle. On top of that, what you’re feeding animals, usually corn, at a factory farm to keep them alive could be fed to humans to keep them alive. Also, in a lot of African countries villages will invest all of their resources to raise livestock to be exported, while none of their people get fed.
Katelyn is one of my neighbors who I’ve been friends with since I was in elementary school. Shes been vegan for quite some time now and she even got me to be vegetarian for a few years… until I stopped. I learned that why you are on the not-as-popular side of a controversial topic, you are readily prepared with a million facts to throw at someones face when they try to refute your argument (she didn’t do that to me but I’ve seen her do it multiple times). Having a plant based diet really does come with no cons, its good for your body, gives you more energy, clears your skin, is good on your conscience.
I think what she is doing is good for the planet. She advocates for animal rights and educates people at school and in her work place. She deals with the backlash of people by ignoring them and proving them wrong when they try to argue with her. She keeps calm so she doesn’t look irrational or like a “radical” activist.