Meat Eating Mistakes


Dahlia Bray, Online Editor

Throughout my life, I have felt a close connection to all beings around me, whether they were people or animals. From the age of 12, I have gone back and forth between eating meat and being vegetarian, and every time, I choose to stop eating meat. I just cannot bring myself to eat something that was once living and happy. However, being this selective has not always been so simple. Finding my path to happy and clean eating has been one of my biggest struggles.

Growing up, I have been through diet upon diet trying to find something to work for me–to leave me feeling revitalized, not drained. It wasn’t until my seventh grade PE teacher Coach Charleston  had our class watch the documentary “Food Inc.” that I decided I needed a change, both morally and physically. I could no longer eat meat and feel guilty for the harm my selfish eating choices caused.

My journey with vegetarianism has been anything but easy. As the sole vegetarian in a meat-eating household, there are barriers on how I eat around my family. My mother believes that she shouldn’t have to make two dinners because of my choice to change the things I eat, so since middle school, I have tried to learn certain recipes and cooking techniques for when my family cannot cater to my preferences.

Though I have had challenges with vegetarianism, I have also had certain advantages. My dad has been vegetarian for the last six years, and my stepmom has been vegan for 10 years, so my dad’s side of the family is  helpful in keeping me on track with what I eat. They always remind me why I do this and who I do this for.

My diet is not just for me and my health–it’s for the environment and wildlife around me. When I was four-years-old, I took my first and last trip to SeaWorld. I cried the whole time, and I felt horrible when I saw the way the animals were kept. I felt even worse when I saw my favorite animal, the manatee, just floating in a small area. This memory has always been in the back of my mind. I cannot live with myself eating meat while being fully aware of other beings’ pain.

The bottom line is that my morality and health is more important than a craving for a cheeseburger or buffalo wings. My decisions have always and will continue to affect both myself and the world around me.