by Duriba Khan
This post was originally published on our partner website India.com:
As with all of the life’s decisions, they come with consequences. For example, when you decide your major will be journalism, aunties at parties will frown upon you for not going into the likes of engineering or law or medicine. When you decide to move out, your mom will call you forty times a day to make sure you’re okay. When you decide to listen to rap music, your ears will bleed. Similarly, when you decide to pursue vegetarian lifestyle, people bombard you stupid questions and statements. Yes, they are almost always annoying.
1. “You’re a vegetarian?”
Yes, indeed. We’ve been over this a hundred times already, so why do you find it necessary to ask me every time we go out to eat?
2. “You’re still a vegetarian?”
Yup. Since the last time we met (yesterday) I still practice vegetarianism.
3. “How do you get protein?”
Oh, I just drink goat blood.
Actually, believe it or not, several vegetables that contain protein—such as lentils, chickpeas, grains, legumes, black beans and even bananas, nuts, and tofu. In other words, the possibilities are endless.
4. “So you’re a big animal lover, huh?”
Sure, animals are lovely, but they aren’t the only reason people choose to be vegetarian. Those who don’t consume meat are much healthier and stronger, while also being less likely to die from heart disease, have Psoriasis, develop kidney stones, get diagnosed with cancers, and develop diabetes—the list of health benefits goes on and on.
5. “I tried being vegetarian for a day…it didn’t work out!”
Ha, as if that isn’t the oldest joke in the book. And I get it you’re trying to be relatable, but let’s talk about how we both hate waking up instead of our appetites.
The only way this joke can get worse is when it’s followed by an age-old anecdote, which follows the sequence of fruits and veggies, but short thereafter rudely interrupted by CHICKEN.
6. “Animals are going to be killed anyway, so what’s the use?”
Perhaps it has to do with the idea that my hunger contributed to the death of a baby goat or this really interesting concept called “guilt.”
7. “Well, plants get hurt too!”
Actually, they don’t. Plants don’t have a CNS (central nervous system) and cannot feel harm, nor do they have willpower or feelings. It’s basically like eating a coffee table.
8. “Is it because of your religion?”
Many times, people are vegetarians in order to meet religious requirements, but other times, people are vegetarians because they choose to be. And all religions preach kindness and compassion, which many find inconsistent with chomping on someone’s leg or liver.
9. “Imagine if everyone tried to be vegetarian—the ecosystem and food chain would be destroyed. Don’t you feel guilty?!”
Actually, the GMO-injected chicken legs and pork grinds at Walmart aren’t a part of the ecosystem. These are grown on food farms, fed with poisons and chemicals until they grow, grow, grow…and end up on your dinner table.
All of these artificial and processed meats are manufactured to cater to the people; as demand increases, so does supply. And if you still insist on talking about resources and the food chain, read up on the amount of water and gas relinquished to run factory farms.
10. “Does it suck to be vegetarian?”
Not as much as being asked these questions every other day does.
Duriba Khan, or “D-Dawg,” is a sixteen-year-old blogging, vlogging, photographing, filmmaking, sketching geek who enjoys long, romantic walks to the refrigerator. She is half-Pakistani and half-Indian and currently resides in Austin, Texas. Duriba also feels uncomfortable writing about herself in the third person. For more of Duriba’s work, check out her blog.