Becoming a Vegetarian

Like Simon, I apologize for not posting anything in a while, I have been very busy. This is my rhetoric assignment, written as if I was going to be on NPR doing a “with a perspective” thing.

At 12:00 Monday through Friday, I, like 300 other students at Crystal Springs Uplands School, am awaiting the last 5 minutes of class so I can beat the lunch line and get food early. The difference for me comes when I actually get the food. Instead of getting rice and the beef stew the cooks have prepared for us, I get rice and tofu. Why? Because I am a vegetarian.

It all started when I was watching a video in 8th grade history class about the American buffalo who were massacred across the great planes not for their meat, but just their hide and horns. This video struck me, because I have a large black dog that looks a lot like those buffalo. Killing those buffalo, to me, was the same as killing my dog. Eating meat is killing animals, and that is something I do not support. At that moment I decided to try and make a difference, because even one person can help.

It has been almost 3 years since I became a vegetarian, and since then I have done everything I can do to raise awareness for this just cause. Another vegetarian friend and I started a vegetarian club to raise awareness around school, and we recently started a blog to try and spread awareness. I even have converted two or three people to be vegetarians. Unfortunately, when I talk to most people about being a vegetarian, they just ignore me, or give me some excuse for why they specifically are incapable of being a vegetarian. I tell them there are animals being killed at that very second, just so they can enjoy a hamburger.

What goes into a hamburger is a very sad story. Cows are packed together from birth, walking around in thousands of pounds of their own manure. Mistreated and tortured by humans their whole life, I imagine sometimes a cow welcomes the death it gets at age 3, a fifth of its normal lifespan of 15 years. The death of a cow is anything but easy however; because the cow has its neck slit without any form of anesthesia, and is hung upside down until death.

Becoming a vegetarian was the easiest thing I have ever done, so why shouldn’t it be for those people? I mean if someone is worried about the environment, the best thing they can do is stop eating meat, even if only for a day out of the week. However, even though people try to separate themselves from the truth, I remain hopeful that people will just consider being a vegetarian and do their part in saving the world, and its inhabitants.

-Henry

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