Veganism

Why Veganism?

Animal Alliance Environment Voters Party of Canada is committed to the promotion and adherence to veganism. All of our team is vegan as are a great number of supporters. However, you don’t have to be vegan to support us. We are an inclusive political party that is just as dedicated to being compassionate and welcoming to those who are not vegan as we are to the animals whose interests we have in mind when expressing vegan values.

Veganism is, for many people, an ethical choice to act in accordance with their values of love for non-human animals by not eating, wearing, or supporting businesses and industry that use or exploit these animals. Veganism is not about being perfect, but doing the best we can to oppose the systemic violence in our world against non-human animals and the tremendous environmental impact these industrial processes have.

Veganism is an extension of our belief in the unalienable human rights recognized and laid out in the United Nation’s Declaration of Human Rights. Some of the basic principles that underlie our values are the following:

– Non-human animals have the same intrinsic value as human animals in that they are different in their ability, perception, interests, self-expression, and cultures, but share a common animality with us that is equal.

– Non-human animals are sentient beings; commonly understood as having their own subjective capacity to feel, perceive, and experience the world.

– Humans are not entitled to withhold these basic capacities from non-human animals any more than other humans.

– The degrading or devaluing of non-human animals is tied to the devaluing of other humans. “De-humanizing” other people is generally viewed as treating someone like an “animal.” If we degrade animals as being of lesser value, then we enable this derogatory standard and injure ourselves in the process.

As a political party that is dedicated to the protection and enhancement of the environment, we also recognize that veganism is an essential component of inhibiting the environmentally destructive processes of industrialized animal production. Meat and dairy consumption are incompatible with a sustainable environmental policy.

– Approximately 18% of green house gas emissions are from the animal agriculture sector. This exceeds the entire exhaust emission from all transportation. http://www.fao.org/docrep/010/a0701e/a0701e00.HTM

– Animal Agriculture water consumption is over 50 trillion gallons annually. https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/documents/HFStudyPlanDraft_SAB_020711.pdf

– Animal Agriculture and livestock feed production occupy approximately one third of the earth’s arable land. http://www.fao.org/newsroom/en/News/2006/1000448/index.html

What degrades our environment also degrades our health. Animal products have been shown to be detrimental to development and health of humans as well. It is an injustice that our political representatives have not done more to protect us from these toxic and injurious foods.

– Red meat and processed meats have been classified as “probably cancer causing” and “cancer causing” by the World Health Organization. http://www.who.int/features/qa/cancer-red-meat/en/

– Dairy consumption has been linked to an increase potential of prostate and breast cancer as well as early onset diabetes and other health issues. http://www.pcrm.org/health/diets/vegdiets/health-concerns-about-dairy-products

– Because of the increasing level of mercury and other toxins in the oceans which fish absorb, eating fish may be toxic to humans. https://www.epa.gov/fish-tech/epa-fda-advisory-mercury-fish-and-shellfish.

Much of the concern and research done around animal use industries impacts on human health and the environment come from an initial increased awareness of the ethical concerns related to these industries.

  • Humans kill over 60 billion farmed animals per year, not including fish and marine life killed which is only measured in tonnes, this easily amounts to over 100 billion animals per year world wide.
  • Violence, neglect, and cruelty are commonly found on factory farms and in slaughter houses as has been documented in numerous undercover videos. 
  • Workers in these facilities are also treated inhumanely and are exploited for their cheap labour, and are coerced to not speak about this poor treatment publicly.
  • Non-human animals may never see the light of day or feel the earth beneath their feet in these settings. 
  • These same practices carry beyond the agriculture industry and are just as present in the fur-farming, pet breeding, and research breeding industries.
  • Our ocean systems and marine life are in collapse due to indiscriminate over fishing.

What you can do:

While it may seem daunting at first, there are many cities that have vegan communities that can help with this transition. Sometimes the most powerful political choice does not come from government, but by what citizens choose in their own lives.  One of the most powerful political choices you can make today is to go vegan for your own health, for non-human animals, and for the environment. 

  • Seek out local vegan communities for support in your transition. If you can’t find a local group, try starting one.  Odds are there are others in your community that are also vegan curious.
  • Educate yourself about how to be vegan responsibly. 
  • Volunteer with local vegan and animal advocacy organizations to connect your new practice with purpose. 
  • Have fun! If it feels like a chore or a bore mix things up.  Find recipes and restaurants that satisfy you.  
  • Give it a chance.  Going vegan requires a commitment and so make sure you give yourself time to adapt.  Remember practice makes permanent, not perfect.

Veganism is a central tenant of our work and a foundation of our integrity as a party.