Of Vegetarianism and the Blind Prejudism against it:

This seems to keep coming up all the time in my life (and probably that of others who are vegetarians. For some reason or another, the rest of the world (i.e. the non-vegetarians) get freaked out when I explain that I am a vegetarian. I mean its not as if I'm trying to convert them from their religion that a good portion of them so blindly cling to, and its not as if I worship Satan or something stupid like that... its not even like it makes me that different than other people. Sure it makes me more conscious about what I eat and about where the products I use come from. But so What? Isn't being informed, espescially in Today's World a GOOD thing??

I mean honestly, most non-vegetarians have no idea how annoying it is when the second you explain to other people that you are a vegetarian you are immediately assaulted with comments such as "you are disrupting Nature's natural cycle of life" or "You are depriving youself of something good" or "Whats wrong with you?! You've eaten meat all your life, why change now?!" or yet another "How do you get enough protein if you don't eat meat?" To be honest, its extremely sickening because all of those comments are the result of either plain ignorance or fallacy. As a result I'm going to kind of pick them apart and explain what is wrong with each.

First on the list is "You are disrupting Nature's natural cycle of life". I can see why many people would by into this. We are taught from practically day one that it is natural to eat meat and use other animals for our own purposes. Despite the brainwashing that people go through in their early years, there is absolutely no real proof that eating other animals is natural. In fact, the majority of research out there suggests that the opposite is indeed true. that eating meat is very unatural. I could bring up countless examples, however instead, I shall let you, the reader research this for yourself and perhaps educate yourself (there's a first time for everything I guess)

Next on the list is "You are depriving yourself of something good." I don't think I can really fault somebody entirely for saying this simply because most people do eat meat and most meat eaters enjoy meat, some more than others. Where my complaint with this statement would be is that it's so obvious. Thats what vegetarianism is, intentionally not eating meat as a form of a boycott against animal cruelty or the breeding of animals for the purpose of killing them. In addition, most people who become vegetarians spend a while thinking about it first and weighing things such as these out in their minds prior to making the decision to become a vegetarian, so saying this to one is just like asking them if they bother to think about any of the decisions they make, and most people who know me probably know that I tend to think way too much prior to making any decision of any sort.

Our next target is "What's wrong with you?!" My response to this is going to have to be obviously nothing is wrong with me, but something is terribly wrong with you if you can't accept the fact that somebody may be different from you and has their own views that they are willing to stand up for and honor and respect. Additionally, chances are I try to be respectful of your life views and philosophies, even though I might strongly disagree with them, thus the very least you could do is show me the fucking respect I'm showing you

And now for our last one, the one which contains the most fallacy of them all "How do you get enough protein if you don't eat meat?" On a physical level, my answer is simply that there are many other sources of protein and nutrients than meat and you can entirely replace meat and animal products from you diet and have no trouble getting any nutrient, with the possible exception of Vitamin B12. On a logical level if the person is asking me how do "I get enough protein if I don't eat meat?" That clearly shows that even they are acknowledging that there are other sources of protein than meat, thus the obvious answer is just eat more of the other items that contain protein (Think for yourselves!!)

Of File Sharing, it's legality and whether it is beneficial or detrimental to artists

File sharing in today's world appears to be a rather large issue. Initially it was only the groups of hardcore ethical hackers who were demanding that all information be distributed for free, however since the birth and death of Napster millions more people have joined them in this demand and for better or worse file sharing appears to be here to stay.

Unfortunately the last couple of years, more specifically since George W. Bush jr. was 'elected' into office the economy has been going down a rather download slope. As a result many huge businesses and companies are losing money, which is only logical. Unfortunately many of these companies seeking a scapegoat for their loss of money and a way to get it back dare not challenge the establishment and try to encourage positive influence of the economy. Instead what these companies have done is attack a new technology known as peer to peer file sharing.

One such organization is the Recording Industry Artists of America also know as the RIAA. The RIAA is the organization infamous for shutting down the peer to peer (P2P) File sharing program known as napster. For those of you who are new to this file sharing concept, Napster was the one of the first (if not the first) file sharing programs written and was the first one to become widely used. The first strike against this program was by the major artist Metallica. Metallica sued napster for distributing their music without permission, and it should be noted that Metallica ironically enough, stongly encouraged bootlegging to its fans prior to this time. It should also be noted that Metallica's record sales during the period of time in which they pursued their case against napster had been increasing dramatically.

The main arguement against file sharing of copywritten materials is that it is essentially theft. This is something I do not necessarily agree with. File sharing in my opinion is taking a copy of something and copying it, similiar to copying pages out of a book. As long as the individual is not claiming its their's or making money off of it for self-profit I do not see a problem with it. In fact, I am joined by many others in this sentiment as over 60,000,000 people in the United States alone use P2P programs (this is more than voted at our last presidential election), from this statistic alone it is evident that the majority of people do not see a moral basis to fight against file sharing even of copywritten material. Also the only reason it is considered theft is due to laws that have been made specifically against it, thus in a similiar fashion to the lack of logic in saying stupid people do stupid things this is not true. The phrase stupid people do stupid things only works logically because those people have been labelled stupid and thus there actions are stupid as a result of this, yet if there actions are examined independantly, they are not necessarily stupid. In the same way, 'stealing' of copywritten material is only stealing because certain minorities are claiming it is.

In addition to this, I am pro-file sharing for many reasons:

  • 1. File Sharing helps in many cases to promote artists in areas where they would be otherwise unpromoted, which in turn generates revenue for the artist
  • 2. Many products that are no longer sold or out of print can be accessed such as books.
  • 3. Record Companies such as the RIAA do nothing to remedy the complaints of the average consumer who feels that $20+ is too much per cd
  • 4. File sharing in and of itself does not necessarily have to be illegal and has many legal applications
  • See the links below for more info

  • Anyway, thats all for now... more to come as more stuff bothers me...