by MPD
Categories: People, Print
Tags: .
Photo: btsradio.org

John Joseph is not afraid to say what’s on his mind. That, dear readers, is for sure.

The Cro-Mag frontman can’t help but exude infectious energy as he talks about the importance of good health, exercise, and a vegan lifestyle. Currently training for an Ironman Triathlon, the famous singer credits his plant-based diet with providing the gusto needed to maintain a rigorous lifestyle.

Earlier this year, Joseph published his first book Meat is for Pussies — a title that has created much controversy — and recently sat down with me for a chat. Check it out below:

Ecorazzi: You’ve been vegan for almost 30 years. What inspired you to write this book now?

John Joseph: I got sick of seeing friends and family die of diseases caused by bad diets. I got sick of the animal abuse, and I am fed up with the corporations who have an agenda: drug companies, the beef, fish, dairy and egg industries, and GMO companies like Monsanto. They keep the masses ignorant, spreading lies like “meat makes you macho,” “dairy makes strong bones,” “GMO’s are safe,” etc. My good friend Moby said it best, “What’s so macho about killing baby sheep and cows that eat grass?”

E: As you just mentioned, many people still believe that a vegan diet isn’t particularly…manly. Why, after all this time, do you think that stereotype still exists?

JJ: Get in the ring with Mac Danzig. Work out with Robert Cheeke, Mike Mahler, Brendan Brazier, or get in the mosh pit at a Cro-Mags show.  Don’t ask me that same redundant question: “Where do you get your protein from, dude?” Where do they get their chlorophyll, their selenium, bromelain and many other nutrients one is missing with boiled chicken and white rice. And don’t even get me started on the variety of a vegan organic diet versus the meat and potato knuckle-dragger diet. Sorry, you lose!

E: Your book Meat is for Pussies has a pretty controversial name. What do you say to people who find the title offensive?

JJ: Get a sense of humor! Lighten up! The book is reaching everyone from Hells Angels to convicts in maximum security prisons to New York City cops — people they’d never reach. I really don’t give a shit about the people who are offended; they attacked Rory Freedman, too. But her Skinny Bitch books made millions of vegans and saved countless animals. I’ve been doing this for 30 years; the Cro-Mags have inspired tens of thousands of people to give up meat. I will never change who I am. As they say in India, “The dogs may bark, but the caravan must go on.”

E: I know you eat a vegan diet rich in organic and whole foods. Why do you believe that eating organic, as well as vegan, is so important?

JJ: GMO’s are poison to you and the environment; they also contain animal, fish, and insect DNA, so they aren’t vegan. And pesticides and processed foods…come on now! If we [vegans] are the examples for the planet, we better look good. Not for vanity reasons, but because we want people to say, “Damn, those peeps are healthy!” Many people look at most vegans and say, “Fuck that! I dont wanna look like that dude.” We need to get our shit together first. Example is better than precept.

E: You talk a lot about protein in your book and the myth that surrounds it. How much protein do you eat in a day, and how much do you think people really need?

JJ: The USDA says the RDA for protein is achieved by multiplying your body weight by .36. So I weigh 165; that means I should get 59 grams of protein. But being an athlete, I get upwards of 110 grams per day. Why? Because I burn it, and I need it for muscle recovery. On days I’m resting, I get less: 70, maybe.

E: How has the vegan movement grown and changed since you first became vegan?

JJ: Today, the vegan movement has much better food and cooler people. Sorry, but the earlier vegans were very judgmental. Be humble; the message goes further. Veganism isn’t the all in all; it’s a step in the process of higher consciousness for the human race. When we have compassion for all earthlings (humans too), we can make the world a better place. Then we can figure out how to evolve out of the cycle of birth and death: Samsara. That’s the real thing. We are all one. Instead of criticizing, show some love and help your fellow man.

E: If you could meet one notorious vegetarian, dead or alive, who would it be and why?

JJ: Ben Franklin. So I can say, “What’s up with them shoes, dude?” But seriously, Arjuna — the greatest Vedic warrior. Because he knew we must fight to spread the truth — even if it offends some. When I hear people are offended by the title of my book, I think about the millions of terrified, helpless animals in the feedlots, packed into trucks going to slaughter, or on the kill floor. And then I say, “Screw those people; they’ll get over it.” And if not, eff them; my job is to stop this insanity at any cost. Sorry for being blunt, but that’s the Cro-Mag way. I don’t pull punches.

A big thank you to John Joseph for taking time out of his busy schedule to sit down for a chat! To learn more about how John is helping veganize the world ,and to get your copy of Meat is for Pussies, stop by MeatIsForPussies.org!

  • http://www.herwinsvegancafe.com herwin

    thansk for posting this ! i wasnt aware that such a cool band was actually vegan and i listened to them on Youtube right away !
    Hey damn right, unlike many people think that meat is for mean and manly people with a killer instict, meat is acually for pussies who are too afraid of watching a slaughterhouse video or listening to veggie arguments. Eating meat is for scavengers who feed on dead animals killed by others, not themslef. Eating meat is an act of ignorance towards the facts, cowardice because you eat something that if you saw how its killed you would cry, and glutony because meateaters cant imagine a delicous meal without meat. Meateaters are mental pussies.

  • David

    I have never heard of him or his band, but is he bipolar or does he just not remember what he says from one minute to the next? In a seven question interview we get;

    “Be humble; the message goes further.”

    followed by;

    “Because he knew we must fight to spread the truth — even if it offends some.”

    Then there is;

    “When I hear people are offended by the title of my book,… And then I say, “Screw those people; they’ll get over it.” And if not, eff them; my job is to stop this insanity at any cost.”

    folloed by;

    “What do you say to people who find the title offensive?

    JJ: Get a sense of humor! Lighten up!”

    He also comes up with this gem;

    “And don’t even get me started on the variety of a vegan organic diet versus the meat and potato knuckle-dragger diet.”

    He does realize that everything in that vegan organic diet are available in a meat and potato knuckle-dragger diet?

    And a question for herwin, since you say; “Eating meat is for scavengers who feed on dead animals killed by others, not themslef. Eating meat is an act of ignorance towards the facts, cowardice because you eat something that if you saw how its killed you would cry…”, then it is OK for those people who hunt, kill and prepare their own meat?

    • don miguelo

      BWAHAHAHA!!! Funny stuff once again from our hero, David! If he WAS bipolar, man would you feel like an a**! I would go with the “Lighten Up!” advice if you find it hard to pick some out.

      I’m certain he would be willing to discuss your questions in person, next time you’re in NY, go to a show and ask him yourself.

    • David

      Remark removed due to a violation of our commenting policy.

    • David

      Nice to know I am your hero don.

      If he is bipolar then it would explain his inconsistent answers. It wouldn’t change my feelings at all, though.

      He makes major inconsistent statements and hopes to change people’s minds? That is what you should be laughing about don.

    • http://www.herwinsvegancafe.com herwin

      Hi David,

      first please take the advice of Don Miguelo and Lighten Up.
      To your question, people who sincerely hunt for food (and not for sport, that is, or to inflate some macho ego, or some weekend warrior who imagines that instead killing an animal he kills his boss..) and kill it , yes, thats okay with me. Most vegans that i know didnt become vegan because they are against killing, but because they are against the inhumanity and the cruelty of it in modern day society where it all comes down in making money without respect for fellow living beings.
      Chew on that, scavenger boy..

      • georgina

        I think JJ speaks that way because he is a passionate man. On the other hand, when reading the interview all i could think was “this guy is a riot!,” interesting to see how David saw a bipolar guy.

  • Bencat1000

    Good interview……Cro Mag rocks and their message is light years ahead of any band.

  • Whoever…

    “Veganism [...] it’s a step in the process of higher consciousness for the human race. When we have compassion for all earthlings (humans too), we can make the world a better place. Then we can figure out how to evolve out of the cycle of birth and death: Samsara.”

    He said it all! :)

  • http://www.savvyvegetarian.com/index.php Judith Kingsbury

    Thanks for a great interview. This vegan grandma loves this guy! Tattoos, swearing and all. He’s got something to say worth listening to, and he says it well.

    This struck me as especially apt:

    “Today, the vegan movement has much better food and cooler people. Sorry, but the earlier vegans were very judgmental. Be humble; the message goes further. Veganism isn’t the all in all; it’s a step in the process of higher consciousness for the human race. When we have compassion for all earthlings (humans too), we can make the world a better place. Then we can figure out how to evolve out of the cycle of birth and death: Samsara. That’s the real thing. We are all one. Instead of criticizing, show some love and help your fellow man.”

    It’s easy to be an all or nothing vegan and have contempt for everyone who doesn’t get it. J.J. sees the bigger picture.

  • Rory Freedman

    I love this man! What a passionate, compassionate soldier of love! If you read his first book, autobiography Evolution of a Cro-Mag, you’ll be blown away by what’s he overcome to become who he is.

  • http://thehealthyhorseman.blogspot.com/ Dachia

    I must confess that I have never heard of this band or man… but they may be my new favs. Excellent words. Loved this article and sharing it on facebook… now to find these guys on youtube and give a listen.

  • josie

    i think what this author published is admirable, yet i am one of those who he obviously doesn’t care about because i think his title is hideous. however, i loved skinny bitch, including the title. but this is not skinny bitch, nor is john rory friedman. i almost feel like he specifically named it “meat is for pussies” to try to jump onto her success. i love that people write books about veganism and animal rights, but this title is really taking it too far.