Angry vegans just leave a nasty taste

Before I carry on with what I’m about to say, I just want to let you know that I haven’t eaten animal products for over THIRTY-TWO years.

I don’t go on about it. I just love animals. Most of them are more intelligent than some of us. And they scream in abattoirs, by the way.

I do not, though, call myself a vegetarian. I have never ever made a self-important, “I’m vegetarian” fuss in a restaurant, or anywhere else for that matter. Not even in my own house where I live with three meat-eaters, but never buy it or cook with it.

As a result, my 16-year-old oven is the cleanest, most fragrant cooker you’ll ever set eyes on.

I know you are what you eat and all that, but I don’t feel the need to declare my vegetarianism at every opportunity. Unlike 21st-century vegans.

Where the hell did this fiery, self-obsessed movement hail from? Vegans have always been around, but they were reasonable.

They walked about quietly in their rubber shoes, got on with their not consuming or wearing anything that might contain, or be derived from, animal products, without being aggressive about those who did.

Those vegans, if there are any left now, are still more than welcome.

It’s the sort that I spotted in a Dorset cafe on a January day, who clinked their dairy-free smoothies and chimed “Happy Veganuary” that are really getting on everyone’s wick. Go away!

It’s that sort of smug superiority that makes you want to wrap them up in a cheese sandwich.

I can understand then – but do not condone – William Sitwell , the now former editor of Waitrose Food magazine, responding to a journalist’s offer of an article on veganism by suggesting he should commission a series about “killing vegans” instead, to “expose their hypocrisy” and “force-feed them meat”.

I don’t think those words would have been the first that came to mind a decade ago, before the march of this new breed of militant vegans.

Of course, a vegan lifestyle is best for the planet and best for human health (and clean ovens!), but self-involved aggression is never going to convince diehard meatheads, or KFC bucket meal addicts that plant-derived is the way to go.

Be nice again, vegans. It’s far more effective than militancy.

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