Colleen Patrick-Goudreau says, "Wake up, bacon breath!"

February 11th, 2010 11:05 am by mad mags

(I’m paraphrasing, of course!)

It’s been a few months since last I wrote about Colleen Patrick-Goudreau’s series of short videos addressing the issues of veganism and intersectionality. (Dear Mozilla: It’s 2010, and yet you still do not recognize the word “veganism.” For reals!? Get with it, mkay?!) In the interim, she’s released three additional segments.

Thus far, she has covered a number of topics, including:
gender-based exploitation;
the universality of the maternal instinct;
violence in the animal agriculture industry;
raising compassionate children;
the agricultural revolution and animal ownership;
forming connections with nonhumans; and
the impact of slaughterhouse work on the human spirit. (Wheh!)

(As an aside, does the cute green top she sports throughout the series make you terribly nostalgic for summer or what?)

In “Growing Food for People,” Patrick-Goudreau touches upon the intersection of “meat” consumption, hunger and poverty, noting that we have the resources (land, water, technology) to feed the world’s population – if only we stop using so much of our existing food supply to fatten up the “farmed” animals birthed, raised and destined for slaughter. “Meat,” dairy and egg production are terribly inefficient – and increasingly inadequate, given our burgeoning population.

In “Becoming Empowered and Making a Difference,” she notes that each of our actions represents a choice made, whether consciously or not. Continuing on one’s present path of “meat” consumption is as much of a decision as is the adoption of a vegetarian or vegan diet. Because our society is centered around animal exploitation, however, only the latter is recognized as a belief system, while the former remains unnamed and invisible – a given. (For more on this, see Carnism: Meat, Deconstructed.)

Likewise, when we decide to take control of our lives, to base our patterns of consumption on reliable information, and to widen our circle of compassion, we become empowered. No, scratch that; we empower ourselves. We seize control – of our bodies and our lives – from those who seek to manipulate and exploit us in order to turn a profit.

“Becoming Awake” is an extension of this theme. Here, Patrick-Goudreau recounts her own vegan awakening.

Recognizing the effect we have on the world around us – our individual and collective capacity to inflict suffering on or inspire joy in others – is a gift. Far from a burden, veganism is liberating. In choosing compassion and justice over oppression and exploitation, we liberate ourselves as well as the animals who would be our food (and the humans charged with harming them).

Rather than asking “why veganism?,” we must wonder “why not veganism?”


Videos in this post

Growing Food for People: Colleen Patrick-Goudreau of Compassionate Cooks ( explains why people are going hungry when we have everything we need to feed them. (1:06)

Becoming Empowered and Making a Difference: Colleen Patrick-Goudreau of Compassionate Cooks ( talks about the empowerment of making informed food choices and about the fact that it’s not that we CAN make a difference; it’s that we DO make a difference with every choice we make. We only get to decide whether we want to make a negative diffedrence or a positive difference. (2:03)

Becoming Awake: Colleen Patrick-Goudreau of Compassionate Cooks ( recounts her own personal experience of having grown up eating meat, dairy, and eggs and becoming desensitized to the suffering of animals – only to become reawakened as an adult. (3:38)



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One Response to “Colleen Patrick-Goudreau says, "Wake up, bacon breath!"”

  1. The Return of “Frugal Vegans…” & delicious-ness, Hoarded » V for Vegan: Says:

    […] cookbook authors and chefs (especially those who are also vocal advocates for oppressed animals, both human and non!). And you can and should support them by purchasing (and promoting) their cookbooks (and blogs, […]

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