Vegans of Color

Because we don’t have the luxury of being single-issue

Veganism’s Feeling a Little Small August 3, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Royce @ 1:15 pm
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**This post is about me wanting a new more encompassing name for my diet**

All my posts, and the wonderful comments that follow, get me thinking harder about my veganism than I ever truly had before. But now I’m wondering about leaving my veganism behind, and I don’t mean going back to being an omnivore.

I really like words, and names, and labels, and identities. Not that I enjoy creating a heirarchy of terms, I just like having a name for what I do. I remember being overjoyed when I found out what I was doing back in 8th grade was called veganism. And though I haven’t constantly been doing veganism for the 7 years since then (I have slipped into omnivorism, freeganism, meaganism, and lacto-ovo vegetarianism at various times) vegan has been a huge part of my identity.

But now veganism feels a little too small; like an old sweater that shrank in the wash. See my problem is that veganism is too small for me. My veganism needs to be anti-racist, decolonial, feminist(womanist), anti-capitalist,horizontal, queer, and green, along with anti-speciesist. And it seems some might think that I’m stretching veganism too much, making it too big, too hard. But my mind and my stomach recognize the the interconnetedness.

And thats why I really wish I could think of a new label (see I prefer womanism to feminism, and horizontalism to anarchism). I’ll keep using vegan for now, at least till someone comes up with a better name for a more encompassing diet. a diet I imagine being more dynamic, constantly changing, and always asking questions.

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If you click yr heels 3 times, you too can stop being brown July 30, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Noemi M @ 5:37 pm
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A post on veg*ns of color and a shout out to the vegans of color blog on feministing has turned into the old vegetarian debate-fish, can it be on the vegetarian buffet table or not?

Another common argument I hear all to often in different circles is the “I don’t like labels” cover. You’ve heard it before. Someone who says “I’m part of the human race” or someone who says “I don’t see colors, I see people.” I have to admit, I always vomit a little in my mouth when I hear something shoveling this. Other variations might include something like I’m not a feminist because I like men or I don’t believe in feminism because I beleive in equal rights for men AND women.

Take this one for example:

In the meantime people should be less concerned about labels. Even though it can be frustrating when the lables get clouded, people will always have their opinions and ideas.

Sure, it’s safe to use this line when you can’t remove the label that others use for you. See, I’ll always be a “Hispanic” (sic) person to any one that looks at me. I can’t hide behind the “don’t label me” excuse because I am brown, and you know I’m brown by looking at me. Some even say they can sense my brownness over the phone (I worked billing at a call center-was called wet back and spic countless times without them even knowing my first name). You can think I’m Mexican, “exotic”, Carribean, Indian-but rest assured that I am automatically labeled as being non-white.

Another thing that irks me the wrong way appears in the comments section. Comparing isms to other isms. In this case, being bisexual and being a faux-vegetarian. It just doesn’t fly.

Yet, another thing that comes up in the comments in the opinion that I’ve heard many times: if I lived in poverty, I would be forced to eat meat because poor folks can’t tell the difference between meat and a potato. Furthermore, poor folks throw all moral convictions to the wind (if they do not eat meat for moral reasons, lets say) because, well, they are poor and therefore have no moral compass. ( Yes that was sarcasm folks). I suppose this idea comes from the belief that poor folk have to be appreciative of any food that comes their way and no poor person would turn away meat. I guess only self-respecting non-poor folks can decide what they do not want to eat.

*note on post title: I in no way want to be nonbrown. But I wonder if that’s what folks want to happen to us so we can avoid using icky labels such as “Mexican.”