Last night I had another one of those fucked up Q&A sessions with my meat eating sister and her other half which resulted in me leaving scratching my head once again wondering how on earth I am related to these people. From conversations with other AR activists and vegans/vegetarians I know I am not the only one that is thinking of getting onto one of those madcap chat shows and demanding a DNA test.
The conversation started quite innocently with an aunts concern for her niece, she asked me how my daughters job hunting was coming along. My daughter is at college and is looking for some evening or weekend work for extra income but due to the economic situation in the UK hasn't had much luck so far. I explain she is struggling to get any work but is trying her best, this is when the by now boring attack on the AR lifestyle and vegan diet is slipped in. Through conversations with me and my daughter she has learned that my daughter who is an AR activist and vegan would never work for certain companies or industries such as Mcdonalds, KFC, Burger King ect...... because this would go against her moral beliefs.
So now my sis says if my daughter wasnt so stubborn she could get a job at McDonalds who are always looking to employ young students, STUBBORN?????
I bite my tongue and once again try to explain (all the time knowing I will never again get this wasted 5 minutes of my life back) why it is so morally wrong for my daughter to work in such a place blah blah fucking blah........
I can see from the way I am talking to the back of her head and she is concentrating more on facebook farmville than what I am saying that its not really getting through. "Would she work in a supermarket"? she asked, I explained of course she would as long as it wasnt the meat or fish department. "they sell meat in supermarkets" was her reply! By now my head is starting to hurt a little and my eyes are meeting in the middle, keep in mind I have been through about 100 similar conversations with my sis and all end in the same way, she doesnt get it! I then try to explain the facts about McDonalds having horrendous animal welfare ethics (in the sense they actually have none) and as a business they contribute massively to the meat industry therefore are considered an enemy in the eyes of any true animal rights activist.
I then get the lecture from both my sis and her other half about doing anything to keep a roof over our heads and paying the bills with the comment "even cavemen had to find a cave and supply food", they insisted morals should not come into the equation. I sighed and asked them if they were starving or homeless would they sell a 6 year old child into slavery so they can eat or pay the rent? Of course the answer was no and tensions were raised, they then proceeded to tell me that was not the point while I tried to point out the reason they wouldnt sell the child into slavery to fund their own financial comfort is because it would be morally wrong!
Thinking I had made a good point and slightly hoping I got through a little (forgetting my past failures for a second) I cross my fingers. Nope, instead I got a strong defensive wall and them trying to make me realise I hadnt understood the conversation and there was no point in having this conversation if I wasnt going to listen to them.
So there it was, a pointless waste of energy and time yet again. Why do I keep wasting my time trying to explain the rights and wrongs of mankind to people who just cannot or will not understand it? I suppose its a little obsession about my love for the animals and the AR movement as well as a huge chunk of hope that one day I may actually break through that hard shell of ignorance and plant a seed in the soft centre of their heart. At the end of the day what is the point of the animal rights movement if we dont have hope, a lot of what we wish for cannot be achieved without hope!