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Why Go Veggie?

Think About It

We were in Zurich at the time, early days on Paul and Linda's 1989-90 World Tour, and Linda was backstage debating vegetarianism with one of the roadcrew.

"It was OK to eat meat, Man had always eaten meat; it was traditional", ran the argument against her.
"Why", the crewman continued, "it's not as if they're anything but cows. You're not eating somebody's pet."

"Well, why not?", said Linda, "Why not take your puppy, stun it, slit its throat while its little heart still beats and roast it? Why not serve it up with potatoes and peas, enriching the gravy with the puppy's own blood?"

"But that's horrible", said the crew man. "But that's exactaly what you do with roast lamb", said Linda, "that's how a lamb gets to your dining table..."


Months later, in Tokyo, Paul was reflecting on how certain riggers on the tour had almost rebelled at the idea of being fed the vegetarian diet that we all ate before the shows.

"We need out meat", they'd told him, "we're big guys, we need our protein , we need to be kept pumped up".

"Listen guys", said Paul, "do you know what the butchest creature in the animal world is? A gorilla. He's big, he's huge, he's pumped up, he's muscular... and he eats leaves."


And that is all we are trying to do with this special edition of Club Sandwich... MAKE YOU THINK.

If there's a difference between meat-eaters and vegetarians, it's that. Veggies are more thoughtful. The sheer process of giving up eating flesh for the principle of not hurting animals is not one that can be arrived at by any other way. You have to think about it.

It doesn't mean vegetarians are innately more caring than flesh-eaters. We all have the potential to care, to be kind. But vegetarians have just thought it out, thought out how a calf or a pig is killed for the plate, thought about how likfe must be for the caged mink shortly before its death by anal electrocution. I firmly believe that anyone who thinks today about the food production of meat is tomorrow's vegetarian.

Think about it enough and you'll come around.

And think, realise that YOU can make a difference. That's the nub of the article penned especially for Club Sandwich by the award-winning dramatist Carla Lane. As Carla poignantly spells out, the individual holds the key to the life - or death - of the animals. no demand, no supply. No death.

Carla's words shame us all. "You my friend, are the cause of it all", she writes, "I say you, meaning those who eat animals, wear fur or leather, buy animal tested products..."

Eleven years a vegetarian and I still own a leather jacket, still wear suede shoes.


But read on, read about Tim mansell; the boy from the Black Country who's doing wonders with Mocotan, making jackets and shoes from material that truly looks like leather and hide and not - ais in more "fake" cases - an unstylish and embarrassing joke.

And read about Linda's own brand of meatless meat-dishes, made from a new wonder stuff (TVP) that fools the carnivores with its taste and eases the conscience of the cook.

As Linda says "we're in a food revolution". With a team of nutritionists, she's now produced a range of ready-made fast food that look like meat, smell like meat, taste like meat and are entirely cruelty free. They pack all the protein and all the taste. So what need meat now?


And Blair Cunningham, Paul's new drummer, should touch a mental nerve or two when - in explaining why he went veggie - he contends that if you love life, and moreover love your life then respecting the lives of animals is just a step away.

If you want to look after yourself, says Blair, "they that's pretty damn hard with a load of animal carcasses running around inside of you."


Geoff Baker

From Club Sandwich Spring 1991 Issue #57, "Why Go Veggie?"
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