How to Effectively Argue Your Case Against Vegetarianism
Fruit is Nice
Nothing against Vegetarians
Really, most of us have nothing against vegetarians or vegetarians. Most of those vegetarians or vegans that we are accquainted with are usually understand and accepting of the meat we choose to eat, just as we are accepting of the lack of meat and animal products they choose to not have in their diet.
However, just as there are in other areas of life, there are people who are militantly vegetarian and will approach you whilst you are preparing to tuck into your big, juicy steak that you've been salivating over all day, to expouse the reasons why you shouldn't ever be tucking into that steak or any other meat for that matter. How can you prevent this? Or, if worst comes to worst - how can you argue effectively against vegetarianism?
Firstly - know your topic. Having knowledge of the reasons why people become vegetarian in the first place are always useful - knowing why can help you form the rest of your argument. Secondly, rather than attack their way of being - question it. No one responds well to a "Vegetarians are just dumb" comment, but if they are made to think about what you are saying - it may not convince them to change - which is not your intention, but it may make them reconsider who they approach about being an omnivore, if at all.
Some Tips That Will Help
Planning your argument helps, but most of the time you won't get a lot of prior warning. Unless of course your friends are hassling you!
Don't challenge their own behaviour straight away - you want them to listen first, then you can challenge them.
The typical start to a conversation around why vegetarianism is best starts with the "Think about the animals!" type sentence. There are two ways to deal with this - one is the obvious "By me being only one person not eating meat, animals are still going to die for meat - now if I didn't eat it, it will just go to waste." The other is more obvious, particuarly when they exclaim abhorrence to the pain inflicted upon the animal when they are killed, but only if you have seen or read about the research. This research is on the experience of pain for plants - yes, vegetables, fruit, herbs. It has been proven that plants also feel pain, and can let off energy in 'panic' when they are about to be injured (Yay, for National Geographic/Discovery channels!).
Without attacking their own behaviours - eg "But you eat vegetables, they feel pain too!!" - perhaps try something along the lines of "Yes, I understand what you mean, but did you know that plants feel pain when they are cut or picked also? How do you feel about that?"
Acknowledge the benefits of vegetarianism - everyone likes a compliment, they also like to know that they are being heard. However, this also helps with the 'circle of life' argument - it is possible to have a complete healthy diet getting all the range of vitamins and minerals needed, as a vegeterian - it's just a lot harder than as an onmivore. How is this a circle of life issue? If you look at it - most animals are designed to eat other animals. We are designed with stomachs that will cope with animal meat, yet the cow's four stomachs are not designed for such - which is why they eat grass, and grain. Sure, our teeth may not be up to the same standard as say a lion's, but we do do an awful lot with them!
Perhaps they will bring up the cost of feeding a cow to feed a small family. When they compare the amount of feed it consumes for the amount of people it benefits - sure, there is a lot of grain that goes into making a decent sized cow for slaughter, and sure it could feed a small army of starving people - but would it ever get to them? There is more than enough food in the world to feed all those who are starving in the world - it's just that most of it is in America, UK and other developed countries - being wasted because we have easy access to it. Those who would use it - can't get to it. There in lies the problem with their argument
If you need to - question their use of animal products - gelatin, glue, leather, some cosmetics, shampoos etc. There is usually a least one animal product in the products we all use.
So, in 'fighting' with patience and knowledge, combined with a little respect for other people - you may not win, but at least you made a point - without resorting to childish name-calling. Something that cannot always been said when a worked up anti-meat person decides to have an argument.
NB: Please note - I used to be vegetarian. I have no issue whatsoever with vegans, or vegetarians - so long as they don't have an issue with me. This is merely an informatiive (hopefully) hub on a topic I thought of!