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Ethics Beyond the Plate presentation by Leigh-Chantelle at Bali Vegan Festival


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Leigh-Chantelle from Viva la Vegan! gives her Ethics Beyond the Plate presentation at the 2nd Bali Vegan Festival.

Sunday 9 October
Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

The blurb:
With the mainstream media watering down the meaning of veganism with it's dietary, fitness and weight-loss focus, is the vegan movement losing its core ethics? There are many reasons and benefits to go - and stay - vegan. Including the environment, labour rights, human rights, animal rights, ethics, feminism, and other intersectionality issues. How can we learn from other social justice movements to move forward in a more inclusive and intersectional way? If more people stay vegan long-term due to ethical reasons, how can we promote consciousness-raising, non-oppression, non-objectification, and anti-consumerism for and beyond the vegan lifestyle?

Find out more about how we can work together as vegans and activists to promote inclusivity, learn from other movements, and lead by example to promote compassion to ALL we encounter. Learn how to become a more effective activist and make these much-needed changes with Leigh-Chantelle's Ethics Beyond the Plate talk.

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Ethics Beyond the Plate presentation by Leigh-Chantelle at Bali Vegan Festival

  1. 1. Ethics Beyond the Plate Leigh-Chantelle Bali Vegan Festival: 9 October, 2016 Source:
  2. 2. My Background Content Creation & Social Media since 2009 NOW Appraisals, Consulting & Training for Events, Businesses & Corporate Give lectures, workshops, consultations and coaching on the following topics: Online Marketing & Social Media Online Etiquette & Effective Communication Tech Tips & Online Security Writing and Releasing your own Book or eBook Vegan Health & Lifestyle Staging Effective Events & Engaging Volunteers Published Author, International Speaker & Consultant
  3. 3. My Vegan Journey Went Vegetarian in 1994 Dairy and Egg industries… Vegan for 20 years in January
  4. 4. Viva la Vegan! website started in 2005 to promote recipe calendars 10 years or Blogs, Articles, Podcasts, Videos, Interviews, Recipes, How-to Videos, FAQs, Talks etc Been giving talks on the vegan lifestyle for over 10yrs
  5. 5. Books & eBooks NEW Vegan Athletes Book Many other eBooks
  6. 6. Core Ethics Most of the top internet searches online focus on health and diet Mainstream media focuses predominately on health, diet, weight loss, and food terms e.g. raw vegan Mainstream media focus on middle-class, mostly white and thin (females) Stock image
  7. 7. The Past 20 years Many changes Not many vegan options Had to “give up” things Scarcity mentality Knew what a “vegan” was
  8. 8. Vegan, Vegan, Everywhere SO MANY: Products Businesses Shops Restaurants SO EASY to go - and stay - vegan Source:
  9. 9. Mainstream Media Past 4-5 years Using the term “vegan” more Mostly on eating - or not eating - certain foods Weight loss & Control Allergens e.g. gluten- free, egg-free, dairy-free Food Terms e. g. raw till 4, HCLF, paleo Source:
  10. 10. Some Ideas Beyond Food Ethics Intersectionality Oppression Privilege Compassion Effective Communication Source:
  11. 11. Plant-Based Food-related aspects are only ONE part of being vegan The term “plant-based” should be used Words and Meanings change over time More in common with meat eaters who are interested in Social Justice, than with vegans who simply want to lose weight
  12. 12. What IS a Vegan? Vegans choose to not consume any: Animal Flesh - including sea creatures Animal Secretions - dairy, bile, hormones Animal Products - eggs, honey, fat, blood, casein Animal By-Products - gelatine, isinglass, rennet But, it’s NOT just a diet
  13. 13. What IS a Vegan? The word "vegan" was coined in 1944 by Donald Watson of the Vegan Society of the UK. This definition states: Veganism is a way of living that seeks to exclude, as far as possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing and any other purpose.
  14. 14. What IS a Vegan? Non-Dietary areas Vegans choose NOT to use: Animals for Clothing - wool, silk, leather Animal products for Cosmetics or Household Goods - lanolin, beeswax, glycerine, tallow Animals for Testing - experiments, research, defence Animals for Entertainment - zoos, circuses, aquariums, rodeos
  15. 15. What IS a Vegan? Set of ethical guidelines Commitment to ethics Source:
  16. 16. Why Vegan? MANY reasons to go - and stay - vegan Including: Animal Rights & Ethics Health, Fitness & Diet Environment & Land Rights Human & Labour Rights Feminism Social Justice issues
  17. 17. Why I’m Vegan Veganism encompassed everything I believe in: Consciousness-Raising Non-Oppression Non-Objectification Anti-Consumerism
  18. 18. Why I’m Vegan I went vegan primarily for animal rights Have also been involved in feminist, and environmental movements Now I’m interested in how ALL Social Justice issues relate/intersect with Veganism MY way of leading by example to promote peace, love and compassion I enjoy bringing this message to others
  19. 19. Veganism is a great way of… Putting compassion into action Living in line with your beliefs Leading by example Showing others how you want our world to be
  20. 20. SO Many Reasons Always be open to learning other reasons May change your reasons Hopefully you can add many more great reasons why veganism is important
  21. 21. Vegans do NOT partake in… The Use The Abuse The Exploitation of non-human animals for ANY reason More focus needs to be on things beyond what we do - or don’t - eat
  22. 22. Just One Step To me, veganism is just one step An awesome and important one But still just one step Source: Suranjan Mukherjee, National Geographic
  23. 23. Get Involved & Share Info Great work by many vegan, and animal rights groups, organisations, and NFPs Use their content and information to share e.g. undercover investigations, fact sheets, studies, recipes, interviews, videos, rescue stories etc
  24. 24. Some New Ideas Some ideas I’d like you to think about Do your OWN research Think about how we can: Learn More Do Better Become better examples of compassion in action
  25. 25. What IS Intersectionality? Linking ALL Social Justice movements to each other Working together to make changes Examples intersectionality addresses include: racism, sexism, speciesism, homophobia, ableism, classism, ageism Source:
  26. 26. Health The vegan diet CAN be healthy Focus on the 4 staples: Whole grains Fruits & Vegetables Nuts & Seeds Beans, Legumes & Pulses A lot of not-so-healthy vegan foods A lot of restrictive/controlling eating under the guise of healthy eating SO many vegan diets e.g. high-carb low-fat, oil-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, paleo vegan, low-carb, raw, beegan, whole foods, low-fat raw (80/10/10), raw till 4
  27. 27. Health - Some Questions Should veganism still be promoted as a healthy diet? Should veganism be promoted as a cure-all? What can we do to encourage others to be flexible and open to all types of healthful vegan foods? What more can we do to encourage long-term commitment to the vegan lifestyle? How can we show the different types of vegans that exist?
  28. 28. Environmental Impacts of Animal Products Inefficient as a food source Massive scale of the industry - 10s of billions of animals killed each year Land clearing & Degradation Green House Gases (GHG) - including carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide GHG emissions range 20%-50% Many official measures of GHG emissions from livestock are under-reported READ: Paul Mahony’s articles on these issues online A Vegan DIET doesn’t contribute to any of the above
  29. 29. The Environment - Some Questions Where does your Food come from? What are the growing, producing & packaging processes? How far have your favourite packaged vegan foods travelled? What are the Food Miles? What about Food Scarcity & Food Security? Do you support in-season, non-GMO, organic and locally- grown produce?
  30. 30. People Humans are animals TOO Unskilled and undocumented workers work in abattoirs in horrific conditions with bad pay Vegans are NOT supporting this
  31. 31. People - Some Questions Think about your vegan clothing, vegan shoes, favourite brands. What are the ethics & conditions involved in the manufacturing processes? Do you know how your favourite products are produced? Do the people who make these items get paid a fair wage?
  32. 32. What About? Feminism? Human Rights? Reproductive Rights?
  33. 33. People & Feminism Feminists are against the objectification & commodification of their bodies Feminists are against their bodies being seen as a product Do you think defending ONE type of female body while using & abusing another is okay? Do you think different types of bodies and people should be used to promote veganism?
  34. 34. People & Violence Domestic Violence is a BIG issue Harming of non-human animals when younger is seen as something that can lead to harming of people when unchecked Should we dismiss certain types of behaviour just because of someone’s age, sex, position in society, or class?
  35. 35. Privilege Most of us have privileges we can never really understand or appreciate - unless they are taken away It’s important to be mindful of others It’s important to exercise compassion It’s easy to be judgemental - it’s important NOT to be We may think we have all the answers and solutions for others, but we DON’T We all have choices, Some people have much better choices than others.
  36. 36. Is Everyone Able to… Access spaces, events? Access transportation to events? Afford to attend meetups, restaurants, events? Be Comfortable in a space, and around one another? Get through their day? (Some need treatments & drugs) Understand what is being communicated?
  37. 37. Privilege - Keep in Mind… Some people can’t choose to NOT eat particular foods Some people can’t afford do buy new vegan clothes or vegan shoes Some people can’t access transportation to support vegan restaurants Some people can’t afford to attend vegan events Some people aren’t mentally or physically able to attend protests or demos Some people don’t feel comfortable amongst another sex Some people feel they don’t belong - as there’s no one who looks like them in the movement Some people don’t feel their opinion is valid enough to share it
  38. 38. Black Vegans Not props in discussions/debates or marketing No need to use and commodify a group of people to further the vegan/Animal Rights agenda Illustration by Steffany Brown
  39. 39. The Dreaded Comparison “The Dreaded Comparison: Human and Animal Slavery” by Marjorie Spiegel “Eternal Treblinka: Our Treatment of Animals and the Holocaust” by Charles Patterson Good examples of the connection of slavery, and human supremacy AND uses language respectfully
  40. 40. Be a Good Ally Against Racism & Speciesism TIPS: by Justin Van Kleeck,
  41. 41. Why is it Racist? “Material designed to provoke a white audience is also liable to alienate a Black audience. By using slavery as a tool to promote vegan values, vegan activists make clear that vegan spaces are frequently racist spaces. As is often the case in predominantly white spaces where racism goes unchecked, there is little room for people of colour. This marginalisation results in the perception that veganism is a movement by and for white people, which certainly isn’t the case.” - Claire L. Heuchan (@ClaireShrugged) Article: “Veganism has a serious race problem”,
  42. 42. Why is it Racist? “Imagery of chattel slavery is popular amongst white vegan communities. The relegation of black people as less than human was at the core of the ideologies that justified that system of enslavement. Because of this, many black people are understandably triggered and offended by white people’s casual use of this imagery and arguments that continue to compare our ancestors with nonhuman creatures. White vegans often argue that our desire to separate ourselves from nonhuman animals is a “speciesist” argument. What these people fail to recognize is that black people are still fighting to be recognized as fully our own species. As equally human. What does it mean when these white vegans argue against our demand to be viewed and represented as fully human, rather than as props in their version of nonhuman liberation? The problem with this imagery is not only that it compares our ancestors to nonhuman animals, but that it erases our contemporary experiences where the effects of such comparisons continue to justify our oppression in this country… We are still being dehumanized by the systems that oppressed our ancestors, yet white vegans find no problem stealing imagery that is deeply personal and traumatizing to us in order to, yet again, compare us with nonhuman animals for their art and causes.” - Steffany Brown, Op-Ed on
  43. 43. Websites to Check Out: Food Empowerment Project: Sistah Vegan Project:
  44. 44. Always Be Learning Our way is NOT the only way Learn from other movements LGBTQI movement is a great example of including and welcoming allies Source:
  45. 45. Social Justice - Questions How can we participate in other Social Justice movements and support their causes? How can we encourage others to support our movement - whether or not they are vegan? How can we promote veganism in the most inclusive way
  46. 46. Planting Seeds At best vegans are 1-2% of the population - this figure hasn’t changed for 20 years Find out other people’s passions & motivations See how you can plant the seeds of change
  47. 47. Why people Stay Vegan Animal Welfare is the most effective way to get people to eat less meat Health reasons are the second best READ: Nick Cooney’s books “How to be Great at Doing Good,” “Veganomics” & “Change of Heart” SUBSCRIBE: - informing on advocacy strategies through actionable research on their effectiveness
  48. 48. Make Some Changes Vegans don’t ONLY care about non-human animals Let’s ACT like it Learn more about each other and the world around us ALL systems of oppression need to be changed
  49. 49. There’s only 24 hours in a day There’s SO much information There’s SO much to learn Only limited time Start with what resonates the most for you What are you most passionate about? What are you best at communicating? Start here Always aim to Listen & Learn More Focus on More Good, Less Harm Source:
  50. 50. Online Be Nice, Be Kind You can still disagree with someone without using negative words, names, judgement Remember - wrongly or rightly - that you maybe the ONLY vegan someone comes into contact with What you do and how you do it reflects the whole movement - so ACT like it!
  51. 51. Top 10 Tips for Online Etiquette
  52. 52. Be Mindful What language do you use when promoting veganism? Positive/Negative? Encouraging/Discouraging? Empathetic/Judgemental? Preaching/Teaching? Do you use racist language when you talk about other countries and cultures? E.g. Japan and dolphins/whales, China and dog meat? The Middle East and live export Do you use trigger words that might truly upset someone? Words such as slave, rape, concentration camps Do you give unsolicited health advice/tell terminally ill or disabled people that they will be “cured” if they go vegan?
  53. 53. Some Advice Do your own research Investigate and Read more Focus on finding out what connects us to each other - not on the things we disagree on Lead by example, and be consistent Be the best version of yourself
  54. 54. Small Steps Once you learn something, it can’t be unlearned - maybe ignored, and maybe for some time Small steps still get to the same destination What works for you might not for others We are all made up of the same things, but we are not all the same
  55. 55. And Another Thing… Focus on Encouragement - instead of Judgement Focus on Education & Planting Seeds - instead of Preaching & trying to Convert Always remember Kindness Always remember Compassion Be the Best Vegan you can be. Start from NOW
  56. 56. Connect with Me