Earlier this year, I spent a weekend with family members who my husband and I don’t see often but with whom we remain close. We had organized the weekend, helping with travel arrangements and costs, and — as more or less the family elders–we were looking forward to hosting everyone for dinner on our arrival evening. But when I suggested a vegan restaurant –an especially lovely one—I was told that we needed to find a place that was more “inclusive.” Apparently one family member was eating only meat.
For those of us who hold the suffering of animals, and especially farmed animals, in our hearts, breaking bread with meat-eaters is always painful. It is hard, and especially so because we’re expected to be quietly polite and accepting of the non-vegans with whom we dine. And for the most part, I meet those expectations. I do it because I get that most people are simply stuck in their habits and traditions and are not really thinking about the impact of their food choices.