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Vegan Scanners will keep non-vegans out of vegan restaurants

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Ever since Beyoncé dipped her baby toe into the shallow end of veganism, non-vegans have dared to buy our almond milk and wear our faux leather jackets. And it’s cool, we’ll share our Kat Von D eyeliner with the enemy. We will even stand idly by as animals are exploited for flimsy excuses, nodding in approval while people describe their baby steps to cut back on meat. But we simply cannot stand for non-vegans who don’t consider the real victims of their non-veganism – vegans.

I’m referring to every vegan’s worse nightmare—sitting adjacent to someone wearing a Canada Goose jacket while tucking into a plate of tempeh wings. How dare they flaunt a dead animal in our faces, sully the good polyester of our booths, and enjoy the best parts of veganism without the fear of our shame for their misguided choices.

Those who dare patronize vegan restaurants without being vegan; the curious, sometimes transitioning, and generally average moms, dads, friends, and colleagues who want to see what the buzz is all about. You wicked reminders of all the heartbreak in the world, heed this warning. Fur-free bans are simply not enough, since fur is no different than any other animal product. We started by harassing fur wearers as they dined, but it’s time to get serious. Each and every vegan establishment should hereby erect a vegan scanner that will keep non-vegans out. If you hurt animals it’s gonna be access denied, buddy.

It’ll scan socks. It’ll scan underpants. It’ll scan souls. It will borrow all the least comfortable aspects of airport security, basically. And it’ll be our first line of defence against having to – yuck – let others use animals near us at vegan places like they do at offices, on buses, at home, in theatres…everywhere basically.

Because we can see the coyote on the rim of your coat, but the down is hidden. We can see the leather patch on your jeans but we can’t get close enough to smell if it’s real. And we have considered that you’re likely wearing 4% alpaca on at least one of your unmentionables.

It’ll catch body lotions tested on bunnies, lip balms made with beeswax, and the leftovers from last night’s roast chicken dinner that you didn’t quite floss from your back teeth. Jigs up, juries out, say goodnight. How can we have a safe haven for us, the all important vegans, if we let those who aren’t vegan yet in? How can we enjoy being vegan if there’s non-vegans around to rain on our parade? 

We’ll protest in their restaurants and at their stores, but no chance we’ll show them ours until the vegan oath is taken, the ceremonial nutritional yeast is snorted, and you’re deemed one of us. This is being inclusive, this will definitely create new vegans, and this is how you advocate for animals the best.

But maybe, just maybe, we’ll remember that there is no safe haven for animals. That our discomfort comes in behind the exploitation of other living beings. Maybe we’ll let the occasional vegan sneak past the scanners to see what we’re all about. There’s a good chance that a great vegan restaurant experience removes the veil (or used napkin) of difficulty and self-righteousness veganism can’t escape being draped in.

And maybe those non-vegan patrons who get a pass will invite some others in, ensuring the restaurant can afford the heavy-bills of the vegan scanners and will keep them open to serve their tempeh wings another month longer. That ripple effect may just covert another few to leave their jackets at home or replace them with vegan ones altogether.

It’s a crazy idea, but maybe we put aside our anger, our speciesism, and our impulse to ruin veganism for others just long enough to consider that vegan businesses are enacting their own advocacy towards each and every tempeh wing enjoyer. That means serving the non-vegan who isn’t sure what vegan means and the vegan who isn’t sure what vegan means (cuz it sure as shoot isn’t a free pass to interrogate others).

Yes, this parody is meant to illustrate how incredibly absurd I think it is that some vegans actually believe it’s a good idea to shame, harass, or propose banning people in fur-trimmed coats from entering vegan establishments. Besides being completely speciesist in not minding all the other animal product that a person can consume, it’s incredibly detrimental to our efforts to make the world more vegan, it’s detrimental to the perception of vegans, and it’s detrimental to vegan businesses that cannot thrive with vegan patronage alone.

If all vegan restaurants promoted veganism, and not incremental change like removing the fur trim from a jacket, more non-vegans would understand veganism. Education is still king, and sometimes that education starts with a plate of tempeh wings.

Photo from Huffington Post

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  • Tyler P

    While I understand what you are trying to do with this parody, you are surmising that because someone doesn’t tolerate animal abuse and murder, than it must be about their superiority complex. Instead it is likely and entirely possible that they do it because of the victim, i.e. animals. You are focused on the human’s feelings, who has supported the exploitation and death of a animal. When the real issue is animal rights.

    • Cat Robinson

      Thank you, Tyler. I completely agree. I’m so sorry your feewings are hurt because you’re wearing fur, you sweet, curious non vegan, you. Yeah, I’m a bit more offended to know that your collar had a face, a heartbeat, and probably sat, contemplating chewing off its own foot, until some asshole showed up and shot it, or worse.

  • Darrin Tyler

    I was hoping this was real. I’m all aboard a scanner. They should exist.

  • Excellent post! I completely agree. I get frustrated when I see those “no fur” signs on vegan restaurants. I support the right of private businesses to make their own rules, but it seems so incredibly hypocritical to me. They are only upset about what they can see (fur) and willing to overlook everything else and attack one small group. Plus, it’s HORRIBLE for outreach. Especially when we live in cold climates, am I supposed to ask a non-vegan friend to strip so that I can take them to a vegan restaurant for dinner? Perform a burn test on my collar to prove it’s fake?
    It’s insane.

    • Eva Tomon

      No it is NOT insane! This is exactly what you as vegan are supposed to do, unless you are not vegan at all and plant /fruit/veg eater. Look up the definition of vegan….

  • asynchronous

    Several years ago, wife and I were visiting Philadelphia. We had made reservations at a prime steak house, but at the last minute decided to try a vegan restaurant called ‘Vedge’, I am glad we did.

    Even though we are still Omnivores, Vedge opened our eyes and culinary palettes. Since then we have been aggressively diminishing animal proteins in our diet. Last year I decided to engineer a new type of CEA (Controlled Environment Agriculture) High Yield Vertical Farm suitable for individuals or community use. The goal was to create the perfect environment that could grow any type of crop in small foot print (tiny ft2) inexpensive habitats. Focus was on 100% sustainable Vegan diet. Still working on system’s engineering, but So Far So Good.

    Despite your dislike (hatred) of non-vegans, this Omnivore is trying to do something that would benefit Vegans and Member of PETA.

    I am glad there wasn’t a scanner in place.

    • Camille Delisle-Carrigan

      Don’t worry about “benefiting vegans”. Worry about benefiting the animals, the planet and your own health. This can best be done by becoming vegan and spreading the word.

  • Camille Delisle-Carrigan

    No one is trying to eliminate non-vegans from vegan restaurants or establishments and for you to suggest that’s the case with your dripping sarcasm is just plain wrong. Wearing real fur, however, is an “in your face” reminder of the horrors that we inflict on animals for purely selfish reasons and personally, I find it disrespectful. Maybe some do it purposely to antagonize the vegans within the establishment while others might not even think about where that fur came from, so maybe seeing the sign might make them stop and think. I see no problem with asking people not to wear fur. And the signs politely ASK people not to wear fur, it’s not a demand. If I had a vegan establishment, I’d do the same. No problem.

  • Alec Bosse

    It is reasonable for a vegan patron to want to dine in an animal free environment.

    It is reasonable to expect an establishment that identifies as vegan to do more than offer a plant based menu.

    To use an abolitionist approach to take no action is to sidestep the issue. It is taking advantage of the image of veganism without taking the responsibility of activism.

    To any establishment promoting themselves to vegan clientele:

    Do you consider this a vegan establishment?

    Do you agree with the statement that veganism is more that a dietary choice?

    Is there a difference between a vegan establishment and one that is plant based?

    Have you considered making a clear statement that your vegan establishment promotes more that veganism as a dietary choice?

    Would you consider prominently posting a sign making a statement promoting veganism as an ethical stance?

    “We are a Vegan establishment.

    As such we encourage the avoidance of animal product wherever possible.

    Please be be aware that the wearing of animal derived clothing may be considered offensive. We respectfully ask that you take this into consideration as we wish for everyone to enjoy their experience at our establishment.

    All are welcome here, however we do hope you will consider veganism in your choices.”

    Note, This does not explicitly forbid someone from entering, but it does bring attention to the matter. Hopefully, it would get some individuals to consider their choice. if they choose to stick to their guns and still wear it, they have been warned that they may be offending others around them.

    • Vic Placido

      Very well said

  • Vic Placido

    What disgraceful article. I’m absolutely ashamed that a fellow “vegan” wrote this. To say that one gets a free pass to say something to a fur wearer is absurd? It’s called standing up for what’s right. As a vegan, Eva should know this. It’s clear standing up for animal rights is not her strong point. I guess in our world we have strong animal rights activists who have no fear educating others weather on the street or in a place where we should not have to see people who wear animal products, leather or fur etc. And then we have weak apologists who… stand up for people who walk into vegan restaurants wearing a dead animal. Get real. Stand up for what’s right. This article is a joke. So is any “vegan” who agrees with it.

  • Muriel Navarro

    You were approached and you didn’t even have the courtesy to reply. You easily could have said no instead you went out of your way to discredit a campaign against fur. Fur!!? No one was saying to turn away fur wearer if you are so worried about business. What a shameful article. You’ve made your money from our community and now you make fun of us?! Wow.

    • Kurt Mikolajewski

      It’s all you deserve. You reap what you sow.

  • Caroline Audet

    Ethical vegans, this article is a reminder to never let humans’ precious “feelings” come before the need to change social norms. Keep standing for, and speaking out for nonhumans.

  • Jhonny Oolo

    Nice gatekeeping, that you will be sure anyone interested in being vegan will never go in your restaurant

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