The Perfect Gentleman Issue 6 - Page 7

On a more positive point, if you search the web for vegan athlete, body builder, UFC, MMA, weight lifter, iron man, sprinter, or any other sport you can think of you will find people at the pinnacle of those sports who are vegan. I myself am very fit and can lift weights with all but the most ardent lifter at the gym. I’m a very keen mountain biker and runner, although an injury stops me running far now. Choosing food is now easy. All major chain restaurants and supermarket offer vegan food at all levels from junk to haute. Smaller businesses are somewhat slower, but are getting better. Clothing is the final frontier. Clothing made from the products of animal agriculture is unnecessary and damaging to the planet and its inhabitants. I will start with the negative effects before moving on to what we can do about it. Wool has caused an environmental catastrophe on the British Isles and many other parts of the globe. Seeing as wool is revered by distinguished gentlemen everywhere, I will use Scottish wool as an example. Scotland did not always look like it does today. In order to graze cattle and sheep, forests were cleared, and today farmers are given subsidies in order to stop the native invasive plants. Consequently, what is seen as a wild landscape is actually an industrial one and one which struggles to support a fraction of the number of species which lived there a couple of hundred years ago. A 2013 article by George Monbiot into the problems caused by subsidies to clear farm land makes it clear that the desire to create industry in remote regions has caused massive harm to the natural landscape. Many Scottish islands have been effectively destroyed for any purpose other than sheep farming, meaning that the sheep and human populations only exist to serve a market for an outdated material, and are vulnerable to the societal changes that I am suggesting are already in progress. A charity looking at reforestation has begun looking at ways of undoing the environmental damage while causing as little harm to local economies as possible. Leather has all of the above problems and adds to it the fact that it is a product of slaughter. The truth is so awful that people tend to withdraw from the discussion. The arguments tend to cluster around the animals living a blessed life followed by ‘one bad day’, ignoring the fact that only female animals get that far.I have no idea how many times people have justified silk to me by saying that silk worms don’t have enough of a brain to mind being killed. How do you know? FEATURED GENTLEMAN 7