Lifestyles: Hunting Versus Vegetarian / Vegan

Husband and I kicked off the New Year in 2012 with a hunter safety class.

(Well,technically we kicked off the New Year by coming home early from a party and toasting in bed with the dogs wearing silly hats and not much else, but you get the idea.)

As an ex-vegan/vegetarian ( I became one for several years after reading Diet for a New America), it’s interesting to me to see the divided camps. Having been alternately on either side of both fences my whole life (and enjoying both), I can see why they often feel judged by one another, as groups of people. I find myself in the interesting position of being able to equally understand both sides.

Vegans and vegetarians disagree with hunting, killing, and eating animals. Ethical hunters follow the Hunters Code , leaving the land better than it was found, respecting their game by only taking legal, sporting, and humane shots, and aiding protected species by turning in poachers. Both feel justified that what they do is both socially, environmentally, and sometimes even morally correct. And in both cases, they are right.

Vegans and Vegetarians argue that livestock and meat eating contribute to greenhouse effects, and that if grazing land were used for farming instead, it could feed the hungry. Likewise, with the abundance of farming land and prepared food in the world, people shouldn’t feel the need to continue killing anything at all.

Hunters, with their club dues, funds, and fees with licenses, tags, courses and the like, make up the top number of nature conservationists in the world. With state-by-state DFG regulations, hunting is used as a form of population control which helps maintain functional environments for animals. Hunters responsibly and humanely kill, dress, eat. and honor their game, using every part of the animal, and even donating their game to the hungry.

So it’s an interesting fact that since BOTH groups of people (and I’m making a generalization here, of course, since there are vegans who are so solely for health reasons and hunters who also poach) seem to care about animals, the environment, and doing “the right thing” by our planet and its inhabitants; yet both often judge the other.

ANY-WAYYY, husband and I are now sufficiently armed with certification, knowledge, and paperwork, so that we can go out on our first hunt this year with one of our gun club mentors. Who knows if I will actually be able to bag anything, physically or emotionally, but we’ll see. I’ve been reading up on some tasty-sounding game recipes, and plan to start experimenting with my own in the coming months.



(I weclome your comments, but as always, keep your debate clean, respectful, and drama-free or I’ll have to delete. Thank you!)


2 responses

  1. Thanks for providing both perspectives at once – I grew up in a non-hunting (and sometimes anti-hunting) family and have only recently joined the sport. I shot my first turkey last week and as we were butchering it, my “mentor” commented, “Now, this is some good locavore meat!” Indeed it was – I roasted it with organic mushroom soup and served it with a side of wild rice that was harvested down the road a year and a half ago. If you have the patience to wait a few days until I get a chance to write about it, you can stop by and read all about it! Happy hunting to you and good cookin’!

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