I dunno, I kind of think Veganism is symptomatic of the problem.
Vegans live there lives according to what they wish reality was, not what is.
The same thing happens with fundamentalists and you end up with kids dying because medical needs of the, real world are ignored because an irrational belief system is given more credence than reality. You end up with Jonestown, Waco, comet cults and Scientology.
Any time you abandon reality you do so at great risk to yourself and those you are responsible for.
I still remember one of the great lines I have ever heard.
“Vegetarianism is the logical precedent to Breatharianism.” Breatharianism is where you 've trained your digestive system to such a fine degree where you go through life absorbing your nutrients from air around you, and you live in harmony with all of nature, hurting or injuring no living thing in the course of your life.
She was smart, witty, attractive, and she absolutely believed it, claimed she knew breatharians and she was well on her way and would probably attain that state within the next year.
Was she crazy?
I don’t think so. The conclusions on which she operated her life were so completely wrong that her sanity was a moot point.
This happened because she allowed irrational beleifs to overrule the evidence of reality.
Overruling reality and operating on wishful thinking is always risky business.
Now, we all have irrational beleifs and things we’d like to be true.
That’s fine. It’s only when we convince ourselves that they’re true that there’s a problem.
“I like animals.” so far so good.
“I wouldn’t eat my pet dog.” still ok.
“I would like to minimize the suffering that my life causes.” OK, this is a preference. I’m not sure suffering is intrinsically bad, but maybe it is. Still ok.
“So, I don’t eat meat.” Fine with me. You’re getting a little loopy and flirting with the irrational, but that’s ok. None of my business.
“It makes me better. It makes me healthier. It’s wrong to kill things so you shouldn’t eat meat either, or wear fur, or experiment on animals. You’re hurting the earth,…”
and all that bullshit. Congratulations! You’ve just crossed the line into irrationality.
You suffer from an explanatory gap in your logic. More than a gap, it’s demonstrably wrong.
The explanatory gap here is that for some reason suffering and death or causing suffering and death is bad. Most people accept this at face value because they have a very strong personal preference against these things, and understand that most other feeling creatures share this preference.
The truth is that suffering and death are neither good nor bad. They are necessary and useful tools of evolution and life itself.
But, once you start pretending that personal preferences carry the weight of truth you’re well down the path to irrationality. When you give up that grounding reality there’s really no surprise where it ends.
Starving the death a child you love becomes a real possibility.