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  • Glauce Fleury

Going vegan by accident: the power of a documentary

I no longer have pleasure eating meat. My awakening happened after watching one of many documentaries available about the food industry: What Cody Saw Will Change Your Life by Mercy for Animals. Cody shows his journey as an undercover farm worker who decided to check in person if the stories he had heard were true.

Those stories referred to animal cruelty. With a hidden camera, Cody recorded images of what he saw but the rest of the world — including me — has pretended not to see. Animals have not only been killed to feed the growing world population. They’ve been tortured.

It may sound silly to defend the right of animals to live when we grew up eating them. It sounded to me because I'd never considered the possibility of being healthy without eating meat. Although I'd heard stories of animal cruelty in farms, I never wanted to believe them.

I had in my mind those idyllic images of cows moving around enormous pastures in absolute freedom. Once a day, early morning, someone would come and milk them to prepare the breakfast. So naive.

In his documentary, Cody showed pigs locked down in such small cages that they couldn’t even turn around. Some got sick and were left to die with no vet’s care. When dead, they were thrown away. Like garbage.

Male chickens, who would never lay an egg, were thrown into grinding machines. Like turkeys, chickens were being genetically manipulated to grow fast and fat, which caused them heart attacks.

There’s more. Cody saw fish raised in such crowded spaces that they could barely move. They were skinned alive and cut into pieces while still breathing. Cows, like all the other animals, were kept in tiny cages. The images show them being beaten, stabbed and kicked. I was horrified. Couldn’t hold my tears.

Why should we be angry with someone who’s beating a dog, but feel okay when this violence happens to other animals? Why is a dog better than a pig? Why does a cat deserve more care than a cow? I’m glad I watched this documentary. I don’t want to be part of it. I don’t want to support this industry that is filling their pockets by torturing animals.

A recent study showed that animal cruelty messaging is really effective to make us change our diets. I’m the proof. I’m now vegan. Before ending this post, I’ll leave a question to you: “Even if we didn’t care about what’s going on, would it be healthy to eat the flesh of animals who suffered to death?”

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