Opinion: A reminder for plant-based eaters

Kate Rehwinkel

Lately some fast food restaurants have added a plant-based burger (for example, Burger King’s Impossible burger) that is supposed to be a healthier option than a hamburger but tastes just like real meat. In my opinion, I think that sounds like a bunch of bologna. I cannot imagine how a plant-based burger can taste like real beef. I’m sure to a vegetarian or vegan it might taste good. But I don’t even want to try it. I’m fine with choosing whatever food group you want, whether it is animal products or not, but my main issue with vegetarians and vegans is because some of them can be judgmental. 

I have a few friends who are vegetarian, and every time I eat with them they have to point out that I’m eating meat and how it is bad for me and what the animal went through during its life. I understand that the animal gave up its life in order for me to eat; however, it is wrong to shame someone because they chose to eat meat. I think neither option is better than the other. I’ve heard about a lot of the benefits of not eating animal products, such as it is good for the environment and better for a person’s health, and those are great benefits. However, did you know that plant-based burgers are not vegetarian or vegan if the restaurant cooks them on the same grill they cook meat products on? Next time my friends judge my meat choice I think I will pass that on to them, without judging of course. 

I know it sounds mean to make jokes about a vegan’s lifestyle, but life is too short to not laugh and I make some pretty funny jokes. My friends and I joke about how in my future wedding invitations the vegetarian option will be BYOS, which is bring your own salad or stick, whichever they prefer. I think that is hilarious and it should be taken as a lighthearted joke. 

All in all, I just think everyone should keep in mind that whatever lifestyle you prefer to have is not any better or worse because one chooses to eat meat. Personally, I could never be vegetarian, let alone vegan, because I am a picky eater, I have a lot of vitamin deficiencies and a lot of my favorite foods have meat in them. So, to my vegetarian and vegan friends, do not shame me for eating the food I want to eat and I won’t shame you either, but I will crack a few lighthearted jokes, because laughter is good for your health.

 

Kate Rehwinkel is a senior management major. She can be reached at [email protected]