“I don’t miss anything being vegan.
It’s not mine to miss.
I didn’t give up anything.
It wasn’t mine to give up.
I just stopped, and then, I gained.
Gained some self respect that I was no longer participating in, enabling and funding exploitation, use and murder of wonderful beings. Because you truly can’t say you are against cruelty and murder while funding it. You can’t say you are an animal lover. Of ALL animals. Not with a straight face and in truth you can’t. I was a thief. A thief who stole precious things from the most vulnerable. I was party to murder. I was a terrible person. I’m so very sorry from the bottom of my heart. I can’t undo all the pain and bad things I did. But I can try to atone by refusing to continue for one second longer. To live my life honestly. When you know better, you do better, otherwise things just stay the same. Please, take a minute today to truly look at yourself and ask why you would continue living like this when we can live without it. I will help you if you need it. Please. I beg you. Just stop. The ability to do so is in us all. It’s never too late.”
The Sixth Extinction: Elizabeth Kolbert on How Humans Are Causing Largest Die-Off Since Dinosaur Age
In the history of the planet, there have been five known mass extinction events. The last came 65 million years ago, when an asteroid about half the size of Manhattan collided with the Earth, wiping out the dinosaurs and bringing the Cretaceous period to an end. Scientists say we are now experiencing the sixth extinction, with up to 50 percent of all living species in danger of disappearing by the end of the century. But unlike previous extinctions, the direct cause this time is us — human-driven climate change. In “The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History,” journalist Elizabeth Kolbert visits four continents to document the massive “die-offs” that came millions of years ago and those now unfolding before our eyes. Kolbert explores how human activity — fossil fuel consumption, ocean acidification, pollution, deforestation, forced migration — threatens life forms of all kinds. “It is estimated that one-third of all reef-building corals, a third of all fresh-water mollusks, a third of sharks and rays, a quarter of all mammals, a fifth of all reptiles, and a sixth of all birds are headed toward oblivion,” Kolbert writes. “The losses are occurring all over: in the South Pacific and in the North Atlantic, in the Arctic and the Sahel, in lakes and on islands, on mountaintops and in valleys.”
On June 16, 1918, Debs made a speech urging resistance to the military draft of WWI. He was arrested and charged with ten counts of sedition and sentenced to ten years in prison. Debs presented what has been called his best-remembered statement at his sentencing hearing:
- Your Honor, years ago I recognized my kinship with all living beings, and I made up my mind that I was not one bit better than the meanest on earth. I said then, and I say now, that while there is a lower class, I am in it, and while there is a criminal element, I am of it, and while there is a soul in prison, I am not free.
Debs ran for president in the 1920 election while in prison. He received 919,799, write-in votes (3.4%). During his time in prison he wrote a series of columns deeply critical of the prison system. They appeared in sanitized form in the Bell Syndicate and were published in his only book, Walls and Bars, published posthumously.