Would you just let me enjoy my meal?

There is something that really upsets me among Lebanese people.

Whenever they know that I’m an animal lover hence a vegetarian, jokes start pouring out and they start competing on saying disturbing harmful animal stories no matter how much they know how sensitive I am towards this topic.

I need to have my peaceful vegetarian lunch and I really don’t feel like arguing and explaining myself every day during every meal to the same bunch of people over and over again with the same type of mocking comments and reaction… I’ve had enough with it seriously.

We Lebanese are “Maneyik”, we need to joke around everything and not respect anything, we need to show how smart and above everyone we are by being all sarcastic and “funny”!
Maybe they are not that exposed to Vegetarian people, but in case they are not, instead, they could act interested and maturely discuss what made me a vegetarian…but no, we are not civilized people, we don’t accept differences, we don’t like people who think differently, we all need to be 1 big herd otherwise, I get this comment: “ haha yiiiii shu 3am ta3mleh bi lebnein, lezim trou7eh t3icheh bi Europa!”
This is literally saying: Lebanon is not a country for individuals with a different mindset, we are not people who care and accept, and it’s either you’re like us or you leave.

To let you understand what I go through, let’s reverse the fact, and talk about something that majority of Lebanese are sensitive about: Religion!

I’m an atheist, would you like me to laugh really hard at your face when you tell me you believe in God? No! I don’t do it because I understand the need in human nature to believe in something bigger then life and justice after life. So do the same when I say I’m a vegetarian even if you’re a carnivore, some people’s nature is extremely sensitive and compassionate.

Do you see me telling you sex jokes and stories while you’re praying or inside the church? No! So stop telling me animal abuse jokes when I’m having my meal or talking about how much I love them, it’s as much disrespectful and inconsiderate.

Do I keep arguing with you if God exists each time you say “wahyet allah” or “inshallah”? No, because it gets annoying at the end…so please do the same during my veggie lunch or dinner, I don’t want to argue about it or hear about it every single time.

Do I tell you to remove your veil each time we go out? No, so don’t tell me to try meat meals each time we want to eat out and check the menu.

Anyway the point is:  the animal cause means as much to me as religion to you, so start respecting other people’s values and beliefs instead of taking yours for granted as being the universal truth.

Thank you for taking the above into consideration. I promise the next post will be lighter 🙂

Below are some beautiful vegetarian quotes that might help you understand better:

“How can you eat anything with eyes?” Will Kellogg

“If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be a vegetarian.” Paul McCartney

“Vegetarian food leaves a deep impression on our nature. If the whole world adopts vegetarianism, it can change the destiny of humankind.” Albert Einstein

“If man wants freedom why keep birds and animals in cages? Truly man is the king of beasts, for his brutality exceeds them. We live by the death of others. We are burial places! I have since an early age rejected the use of meat.” Leonardo da Vinci

“To become vegetarian is to step into the stream which leads to nirvana.” Buddha

“You put a baby in a crib with an apple and a rabbit. If it eats the rabbit and plays with the apple, I’ll buy you a new car.” Harvey Diamond

 “Animals are my friends… and I don’t eat my friends. “ George Bernard Shaw


6 thoughts on “Would you just let me enjoy my meal?

  1. veryyyy well said! congrats. I always say that Arabs and Lebanese specifically do not accept “the different other”, whether vegetarian, “black” or “yellow”, special needs people…anyone which is different than the herd we do not accept him/her easily.
    We want him/her to become like the others in the herd. We don’t just respect his/her difference and leave him/her alone.
    Don’t try further… it is pointless 🙂 but very well said though. keep it up

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