As a “vegan for the animals,” I sometimes find myself incredibly frustrated with vegans whose primary motivation is something else. How in the world can humans’ terrible mistreatment of animals be put anywhere other than atop the list of reasons one ought to live a vegan lifestyle? I often wonder if those “other” vegans are truly animal allies.
But the multipurpose case for veganism (when one justification is not cited as more important than the others) is strong, especially when put forth in a powerful image like the one above. I’ve definitely found myself wanting to be a more well-rounded vegan. I’m always trying to become more fluent in the health and environmental benefits of veganism, and occasionally employ them as arguments to those unwilling to receive the animal message. When looked at as a multi-tool, veganism seems even more like the only sane way to live.
So are environmental or dietary vegans animal allies? I don’t know. Certainly if we’re looking at it as a sliding scale, they’re far more allied with animals than any non-vegan (I think). I guess I’d have to judge it on a case by case basis but I do know this: If those “other” vegans are as eager and open to learning about the inherent worth of animal lives as I’ve been about personal health and environment, I think they’re well on their way to becoming animal allies.