I was listening to talk radio the other day and they were discussing Peta’s recently rejected ad campaign.

‘Grace’: PETA’s Thanksgiving ad

All that stuff in the ad? It’s true. The way animals bred for food are treated is disgusting. I say this because there was a caller that said if that stuff was actually true she couldn’t enjoy her Thanksgiving turkey. Sorry lady, it’s all true. The meat we eat comes from animals that are so mistreated it’s almost unbelievable. I literally could not finish watching certain videos. It was that sickening. And Quentin Tarantino is one of my favorite filmmakers. Just saying.

Not to mention the fact that our food is pumped so full of hormones and chemicals it’s causing all kinds of health problems. Plus, these animals live in so much filth that they actually consume their own feces. *gag* If you really think about it, eating meat is disgusting and actually pretty bad for you.

Well Abigail, you must be a vegan or at least a vegetarian if you truly feel this way, right? Actually no, I’m not. It’s not because I love steak so much (although I do). Or my cravings for cheese pizza are so overwhelming (sometimes they are). I could get over that. Actually, Joel and I both went vegan for 30 days. During this month period I realized why I can’t be a vegan and why Peta has it all wrong.

The problem with Peta is they’re focusing so much on the mistreatment of animals. They hope that, just by presenting people with the facts, it will change their minds. Then people will see the light and magically love all animals and move into a forest and skip around singing happy tunes while birds perch on nearby branches. Right.

Some people won’t care at all. Others will. Those that feel guilty will try to cut out some of their meat dishes. Maybe eat more salad for awhile. But I think we all know, one can only live on salad for so long. Eventually they’ll crave protein and head to their local Whole Foods (if they’re lucky enough to have one). When they get there they’re going to take one look at the price of tofu and decide maybe hamburger isn’t so bad for them and their 7 kids.

Because in the end money talks. For the average person budgeting their time and money, a vegetarian (or dare I say vegan) lifestyle isn’t that realistic. This is why more people, including myself are not vegan. It’s hard. Especially if you do any kind of traveling. I did it as a flight attendant and, unless I planned ahead and cooked my meals in advance, I found myself at the airport eating a side salad, potato chips and juice. Again. I’m sorry but I am not good at planning ahead, especially when it comes to food. I do cook from time to time but, the closer it comes to ready made, the better in my opinion.

Joel and I eat out a lot. Definitely too much. It’s a fault and it’s something I’m working on. However, no matter how much better I get at planning meals and actually following through and cooking them, I’m positive there are going to be times when I’d just rather order in. Or we’ll be on a road trip. Or whatever. Fact is, it’s tricky to find good, filling vegetarian options that are quick and easy. God forbid you’re trying to find something that’s vegan! Now, Whole Foods has a bunch of vegan options that are actually really delicious. But every time we shop there I do a double take at our bank account as to whether I just went grocery shopping or made a car payment. We are not rich. And if we shop at Whole Foods too often we might actually have to choose between food and a car.

What I’m trying to say in the longest way possible is, if Peta is truly serious about animal welfare, they need to stop trying to treat the symptoms and focus on the disease. Stop trying to shut down the slaughter houses. It will never happen as long as the quickest, easiest food options come from there! They need to focus on making vegan food accessible to everyone. They need to find a way to make it cheap. I’m talking McDonald’s cheap. Because seriously, do people eat at McDonald’s because it tastes good? No, they eat there because it’s fast, easy and dirt cheap. Only then will veganism become mainstream. Until Peta figures this out, veganism will continue to be only for the rich, self-sacrificing or ultra organized.

Unfortunately, I don’t fall into any of those categories.