[opinion from Daily O'Collegian]
So I'm listening to my shower radio the other day — yes, I was naked,
get over it — and an ad comes on for a local eatery. The ad proudly
boasted that the restaurant now had three more vegetarian options.
My first thought was to rush to the computer and slam out a column
about it. The column would have centered around my opinion that
businesses shouldn't be catering to vegetarians because it only
encourages their deviant lifestyle.
Two things stopped me from doing so. The first was that I still had
conditioner in my hair, and the second was that if I were to get the
column up to an adequate length, the joke would have to be carried out
so far that it wouldn't be funny anymore, just offensive.
And that's the thing — while offending vegetarians was practically my
hobby in the past, I did mean this as a joke. I've turned over a new
leaf, at least as far as vegetarians go.
There was a time when I didn't hold vegetarians as a group in very
high regard. This was mostly because the few vegetarians I knew way
back when seemed malnourished and had a generally ghost-like way about
them, floating from room to room with their too-pale skin and lacking
the energy to talk in anything higher than a whisper. And they were
The biggest confrontation I ever had with a vegan was when I found one
of their pamphlets discarded in a classroom right before lunch.
That's when I realized what a complete jerk I had been. My friends
accepted me for who I was and didn't try to change me, while I made
fun of them for their diet and offered them a bite of my roast beef
I apologize to all those whom I've antagonized just for eating
differently from me. It was wrong of me, and I realize that now.
I encourage everyone to take a hard look at the stances they take, and
how they go about rallying support for their cause. You could be your
social circle's resident jackass and not even know it. I know I was.
So if someone really wants to argue with me about the pros and cons of
eating meat, I'm sure we'll have quite a fun time of it. But if you'll
let me just be me, I promise to return the favor.
It's the least I can do.
Jason Roberts is the Editor in Chief of The Daily O'Collegian. He can
be reached via e-mail at PigeonRanger@...
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