One of the most difficult parts of being vegan is handling the way non-vegans perceive you. I find that all too often people are almost offended by my veganism. There is an unspoken animosity wriggling under the skin of the meat-eaters I pass by from day to day. Many think vegans cast an air of superiority, as if we think we are above others, and that we enjoy our place there. However, this is not the case.
Vegans are not constantly talking about veganism simply to make others feel inferior. In fact, it is the opposite. Vegans sing the praises of their lifestyle choice so that others can realize that it is just that: a choice. A choice that can be made by anyone. You don’t have to be special. You just have to be willing. It isn’t that we want others to think highly of us or marvel at our self-control. We want others to see themselves in us and feel emboldened. We want them to think: Well, if they can do it, so can I! Because we are not better than you. We are the same.
I used to be too afraid to speak up about veganism. I know the negative outcomes that accompany that. I cringe internally when I see a comment on my posts, bracing myself for the gruesome battle that I know has begun. But I can’t allow myself to care what people will think of me. I have to keep talking, keep telling people these inconvenient truths about the beings they are slaughtering. It’s painful and I know many will hate me for it, but I will never stop. I have to keep fighting for the animals. We all do.