Tag Archives: thanksgiving


(What not to say on Thanksgiving.)

It’s mid April and while everyone else is thinking about taxes, you, the weirdo vegan is STILL obsessing about Thanksgiving and what’s going to happen in November.

OK, Thanksgiving is tough. What other holiday centers around a dead animal? When people are trying to be endearing or cute, they’ll even call Thanksgiving, “Turkey Day.”

In kindergarten, I remember making turkeys out of apples, toothpicks, marsh mallows, raisins and construction paper for Thanksgiving. Somehow we all got the idea that the turkey was happy. How could a creature with a marsh mallow head be miserable?

No one is ever invited to think deeply about animals raised for food ever, but especially not on Thanksgiving Day. You, the vegan, however, are thinking deeply and it’s painful.

You have to just sit there and watch somebody dismember a turkey right in front of your face. You have to smell it. You have to watch others, people you care about, eat it. You have to see the bones, the skin, the little dots on the skin where the feathers used to be. You have to hear stories about some overweight guy who got thin by eating Subway turkey sandwiches every day. You have to do all this while remembering the sweet turkey Rosie, you met at the Farm Sanctuary two weeks ago — the one who let you pet her head.

Vegan etiquette dictates that on Thanksgiving you sit there in calm silence and politely say, “No thanks,” when they ask if you’d like some flesh or some bloody gravy.

Of course, you don’t have to do anything. You don’t have to be polite. You could jump up and down and call everyone murderers and cannibals or you could not go to Thanksgiving dinner, explaining to your family and friends that you can’t stand to witness their barbarous animal food consumption and that it makes you sick.

But again, talking about cannibalism and your sense of revulsion tends to be quite alienating to people. It burns a lot more bridges than it builds.

Just about anything you say about veganism and animals, veganism and the environment and veganism and health gives people the idea that you want them to do something.

How do you usually feel when someone wants you to do something? Especially when that something they want you to do is something you think is impossible, no fun, odd, maybe dangerous and might even make you fat.


Here’s another approach to Thanksgiving. Go and have a good time. Don’t stare at the turkey or the gravy or anything else.

When someone calls you a traitor to the family and the country, you can say, “You know, Grandpa, I’ve been thinking a lot about what you said about Obama the last time we were together and now I think you’re right; deep down he is a socialist and he does want to take everyone’s gun away.

Or if somebody mentions cooking turkey at four in the morning, it might not be a bad idea to express gratitude for all they do to bring the family together. You do that, people might start to think of you as wise, instead of a weirdo lunatic. And if people start thinking of you as wise, that’s a point for the animals, a point for the environment and a point for public health. And if they start thinking of you as sensible, who knows what might happen?

— A Vicious Vegan blog post —


For vegans and pre-vegans it’s never too early to start worrying about Thanksgiving. We’ve had about three and half months to recover from the last Thanksgiving, so now it’s time to start anticipating the next one and maybe even preparing for it.

It’s only natural to try and think of great zingers in response to stuff like this:

“Anyone who won’t eat turkey on Thanksgiving is a traitor to this country and this family.”

Then you want to say: If you eat animals and their secretions, you’re a traitor to the planet and a traitor to all future generations

“Your grandmother and I have been cooking since four this morning, the LEAST you could do, is eat turkey.”

Then you want to say: Four in the morning? I know; it takes a long time to cook a turkey corpse to make sure it’s not infected with e coli, campylobacter or salmonella. You don’t want to make anyone sick. Did you know salmonella can actually kill small children?

“I only put a little bit of milk and butter in the mashed potatoes – does that count?”

Then you want to say: Milk and butter OK? That depends on how much pus is in it – you see, most dairy cows have mastitis which is an infection of the udders. Pus oozes out along with the milk. I don’t think it’s a health threat, just unpleasant to think about.

“Did you consult with the doctor before you started doing this?”

Then you want to say: No, I didn’t consult a doctor. Why would I ask a drug dealer about health and nutrition?

“Depriving your unborn child of protein is criminal.”

Then you want to say: Giving animal flesh or secretions to anyone’s unborn or born child is criminal.

“What’s wrong with eggs?”

Then you want to say: How much time do you have?

“You always were a very picky eater.”

Then you want to say: How do you know that?

Where do you get your Omega 3’s?

Then you want to say: Where do you get your fiber?

“Is THIS what they’re teaching you in college?”

Then you want to say: I don’t go to college. I work for PETA.

As you’ve probably guessed, none of these so-called zingers work worth a damn. Well, they do work if you’re aiming to piss people off, embarrass them or cause them to thoroughly dislike both you and every other vegan they might meet. They also don’t work if you’re trying to end the factory farm system and help animals. They don’t work if you’re trying to help save the environment or if you’re trying to convince your loved ones to eat more healthily.

(more on Thanksgiving next week!)

Peas and love,


— A Vicious Vegan blog post —