Disaster!

GREGGS CUSTOMERS UNABLE TO BUY NEW VEGAN SAUSAGE ROLLS BECAUSE BAKERY HAD ‘WRONG TONGS’

By “wrong tongs”, they mean tongs that weren’t reserved exclusively for handling vegan products, so that there should be tongs that are never allowed to touch anything remotely meaty or tainted by meatiness.

This rather begs the question of whether True Vegans are allowed to eat any food prepared by non-Vegans. After all, the butcher or baker making vegan sausage rolls probably also makes porkie pies. How thoroughly do hands have to be washed between vegan and non-vegan batches? Is there a sanctification process?

This is taking veganism to the point of veganity or veganosity – inanity or bogosity. I realise the point of veganism is to prevent cruelty to animals, and there is no argument that most farm animals are treated horribly, much like we treat human prisoners, and worse. I can certainly understand the views of a vegetarian, and might even consider becoming one. Though change at my age comes hard.

But the “wrong tongs”? This is bogus religiosity. As for Greggs, I commend them for trying to supply what customers want. It’s good to be aware of what farming practices entail, and the cult of veganity contributes to that discussion. So I wish Greggs success in achieving what their vegan customers want. Maybe they could offer Catholics holy wine and communion wafers as well. A modest suggestion.

I wonder, though, how far vegans would actually go? Would they free their pets, for example? After all, pet ownership is a restriction on those animals’ freedom. And what should we do with farm animals once we stop eating them, or their products like eggs, butter and milk? The point here is that farm animals were bred precisely for their economic utility. They were bred to be docile and live in communities.

Would vegans release them into the wild, where they would rapidly go extinct? Or keep them in farm zoos as exhibits of a nasty past? Because once cows, chickens, sheep and pigs no longer have economic utility, what is to become of them? And what about camels and horses that are ridden, and pets? Surely more exploitation there.

What is being overlooked here is that over centuries, humans domesticated certain species, which have grown to depend on humans for their existence. Release into the wild would likely entail their extinction, especially as wild places are few and far between these days. There is a mutualism between humans and the species they have domesticated.

Now fine, humans ought to treat “their” domesticated animals responsibly. They shouldn’t abuse them. Arguably, they shouldn’t kill them for meat. There’s plenty of room for discussion here, and animal rights activists have a solid point. Veganity, however, shows signs of becoming a cult.

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