Hello from indiana


Sep 25, 2017
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Indianapolis, Indiana
Good morning everyone, or depending on your time zone, afternoon,

There's an African proverb that says, "If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go with others." I realize that I have far to go and so am looking for others to travel with. Thank-you for letting me participate in these conversations.

Maybe the best way to introduce myself is to share the event that finally pushed me towards a plant-based life style (btw, I really like that phrase - much more comprehensive than some others I've heard). About a week ago I was riding my Harley across the state (I live in Indiana) and came up on a hog truck. Yes, it is ironic that I was riding a HOG while encountering a hog truck. Now if you don't know what a hog truck is. Think of a double-decker, semi-tractor trailer crammed with hogs on their way to slaughter, In my part of Indiana we raise a lot of corn and a lot of hogs. I knew even from a mile back that it was a hog truck because the aroma is unmistakable. At first I was put-off by the smell (who wouldn't be?). Then I was annoyed that it was ruining my ride (since there was no opportunity to pass it). That's when it happened. A I came right up along it, one of the hogs caught my eye. It was looking at me. Crammed in there with who knows how many other hogs, it was looking at me. And suddenly I felt like (and I beg your forgiveness if you find this next part deeply offensive) I was following a freight car heading to Auschwitz and one of the prisoners saw me. Maybe even wanted to change places with me.

Now, I've seen a few documentaries about the environment and the food industry and all that, not a lot, but some. Usually by the next day I've more or less forgotten much of what I saw. I've heard all the arguments about how adopting a plant-based lifestyle is good for the planet, and our health, and maybe even could promote a more sustainable world-wide economy. I've heard spiritual arguments and philosophical arguments. I even know a few organic farmers who raise their livestock in as humane way as is possible. My hat is off to them for trying - it is a lot of work. All of these things have undoubtedly started to shape how I see things, I guess. But what finally did it for me was that stupid hog looking straight at me with his brother and sister hogs crammed in there all around him. This was a sentient being. It had thoughts. And believe me that's a little weird for me to write since that's more of a Buddhist phrase "sentient being" and here I am a Lutheran pastor. But there're no other words for it.

So, first step - find some folks to help me put into practice what I think the hog was asking me without knowing it. Nest step - well, dunno quite yet. But I'll get myself educated.

Thank-you for taking the time to read this. I look forward to getting to know you all, learning from you, and helping you in whatever way I can.

Oh, and my avatar is my German Shepherd pup, her name is Kava.

Hello Kava and welcome,

Allow me to relate to you a little tale from some years ago which is a sort of follow up to your story:

I was driving to work with a non-vegan colleague. We went past a large van making a delivery to a butcher’s shop. The rear doors were open and inside were, suspended by hooks, row after row of pig carcasses. The comment of my passenger was, “Just look at that hell on wheels.” I would love to say that he was instantly converted but, unlike you, the experience for him was quite transitory.

I have noticed, by the way, that several newbie vegans make only their initial posting on the forum and are never heard again. I do hope you stick with us!

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Thank-you Roger for your welcome and encouragement. I do hope to stick with this decision and with you all. Doing the right thing (such as examining one's life and making some pretty monumental changes) is never easy I find, yet knowing that you aren't alone is a huge help.