/' http-equiv='refresh'/> Vegan Outreach Lincoln and East Midlands: World Vegan Day - Film Screening Report


World Vegan Day - Film Screening Report

Thanks to everyone who came to watch the film,we had 25 people attend and lots of great feedback afterwards. It seemed to make a great impression on all who saw it.
Before the film I (Ruth) gave a five minute talk to explain the other (beyond just health) reasons for veganism, the talk is below. We also had some fantastic information leaflets from the wonderful people at Vegan UK and some choice vegan society leaflets. After the film we had a great short speech from Emily who was has used the information in the Forks over Knives and Crazy Sexy Cancer books (both promote a wholefood plant based diet) to battle her stage 4 cancer with spectacular results.
                              Opening talk:

Hello and welcome to a film screening marking World Vegan Day. We hope Forks Over Knives will prove entertaining and offer up some interesting food for thought. It has hit the news recently with both Russell Brand and Ozzy Osbourne being inspired by it's message and adopting a plant based diet as a result. It should encourage the viewer to think above and beyond the bare minimum "five a day" requirement for fruit and vegetable portions, making an argument for their becoming the centre of a meal instead of an occasional side dish.

As I'm sure many of you already know, a vegan is a person who to the greatest extent possible seeks to avoid materials derived from other animals. We have placed vegan leafleture around the room and urge you to help yourself to those. Whilst the film today presents a message relevant to personal health there are many more reasons for veganism. The most compelling of which tend to be those of animal rights and environmental ethics.

Animal rights when taken to it's logical conclusion can oblige us to oppose the exploitation of other animals. The thinking goes that should a sentient being be seen as mere property then that property will inevitably be subject to any abuses their human owners choose to bestow upon them.

Be it the fate of the male calves left obsolete from the perpetual pregnancies of the dairy cows or the male hatchlings useless to the egg industry who are tossed into a shredding machine at birth. Why do we make beloved family members of dogs and eat the categorically more intelligent pig? Did you know it takes burning 150 silk worms to death, separating them from their silken cocoon, in order to make just one silk tie?

Most people oppose inflicting unnecessary suffering on an animal but with alternatives widely available to virtually every animal sourced food, nutrient or article of clothing can any of our use and abuse of animals truly be said to be necessary?

From the environmental perspective there is an ever deepening crisis in producing the food to supply an ever growing human population and the pressing need to avoid passing the crucial tipping point of runaway climate change which would again increasingly impact on the food problem. The United Nations published a report in 2006 called "Livestock's Long Shadow" in which they spelt out the numerous sustainability issues implicit to the farming of other animals.

80% of the amazon rain forest with all it's carbon storage capabilites is cleared for cattle farming and 80% of the soya grown on cleared land is transported and fed to farm animals around the world.  These cattle share the vast inefficiency of other livestock; needing to be fed a higher ratio of grain to produce diminishing returns as a food source themselves.

Climate change is also contributing to a crisis in providing clean sources of water, meanwhile animal agriculture requires and consumes vast quantities and pollutes more still with the run off and waste pollution implicit to the industry. Meanwhile cows produce vast quantities of methane, a global warming gas up to thirty times more potent than carbon dioxide.

The rearing of cows alone produces more global warming gases than all the world's use of transport combined; yep that includes all the planes, trains and automobiles. The University of Chicago concluded in a 2006 study that changing one's diet from the standard to a plant based one would be responsible for a greater reduction in a person's carbon footprint than switching from a standard family saloon to an efficient hybrid car.

There is also something to be said regarding the working conditions within slaughter houses and the links to mental illness and violence for those who are required to be render sentient beings as mere objects and operate as killers in the name of their society.

The film today first and foremost operates with a message that diet is not only an important part of a cure but is also key as a preventative measure in reducing the chances of falling ill in the first place. We are very glad to welcome Emily here today who at the end of the film would like to offer her personal testimony regarding the huge impact the Forks Over Knives message had on her in her battle against cancer and the impressive improvements she attributes to a plant based diet. So do hang around for that.

I'll also be available to take any questions, or just come over and say hello. We (VOLE) will gladly have discussions, attend events or distribute leaflets, so do get in touch. Again, please do help yourself to those leaflets for a read later on. Enjoy the film...

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