Why Vegan? – Philip Wollen’s inspiring defense of animals
I previously shared this on Twitter and Facebook, but I thought it was deserving of its own post. Philip Wollen is a former vice-president of Citibank who has now gone on to be an amazing philanthropist. After visiting a slaughterhouse, he has become an amazing animal activist. In the video below, he speaks as part of a debate regarding whether or not meat should be taken off of the menu and makes the most passionate and inspiring argument for veganism I’ve heard.
That was the first time I’ve seen him speak, and Sunnie and I were just blown away. Evidently, he prefers to largely remain in the background but felt the debate was too important to not participate in. The Thinking Vegan has a nice interview with Philip Wollen that gives more background on him and some of his current activities with the Kindness Trust. He also mentions in the debate Earthlings, a movie he supported and probably the most well known movie promoting an end to using animals for food. You can watch the movie using the above link.
Sunnie and I did view the full debate so that we could listen to both sides of the argument. One thing is that no one in the debate is defending the current factory farming system (probably because it is indefensible), so those defending the use of meat are instead arguing about semantics in the debate or arguing that it is possible to have sustainable and humanely farmed meat. The anti-meat panel included Peter Singer, philosopher and author of the famous book Animal Liberation, a cornerstone of the animal rights literature. It also included a food critic who only tried to make the point that it is possible to have vegetarian food that tastes good – not particularly revelatory or insightful. The pro-meat panel included a pork farmer, a chef who’s father was a lapsed vegetarian, and a guy arguing that sustainability requires animal agriculture. Honestly, I didn’t find any of the other speakers very effective, whether they were for or against meat, but there were some excellent comments from the audience, which are definitely worth watching. You can view the full debate below:
Cheers to Philip Wollen for his inspirational defense of animals! If you haven’t gone vegan yet, and are interested in starting down the path, don’t hesitate to post any questions you have below and consider checking out tryveg.com for tips on getting started!