People often think about vegetarianism or veganism as an ethical framework or intentional life choice, but in her new book, Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows: An Introduction to Carnism, Dr. Melanie Joy posits that eating meat comes from the same type of belief system. Dr. Joy, a professor and psychologist who works to promote empowering relationships between humans, animals, and the earth, spoke with me at length last week, and our talk is split into two parts here this week.
Claire Danes is starring in a new HBO movie premiering tonight based on the life’s work of animal scientist, livestock consultant, inventor, and writer Dr. Temple Grandin. In the past, I’ve said that Grandin’s work might bring people closer to understanding animals as sentient beings, deserving of our compassion and protection. But maybe I was wrong.
I’m vegan. I think cruelty to animals is unnecessary and unjust. I don’t eat animals. I don’t wear them. And I don’t kill them for sport. However, Ella Es el Matador isn’t a film about animal rights, and treating it as such does it an enormous injustice. I don’t believe in prioritizing a conversation about cruelty enacted on bulls over one about cruelty enacted on women while discussing a beautiful and melancholy film exploring the world of bullfighting through the eyes of female matadors—so I won't.