Weekend Bonus: Vegan Logic

      46 Comments on Weekend Bonus: Vegan Logic

I stumbled across this video while looking for something else.   I’m not going to pick apart this woman’s arguments because 1) she’s not actually making any, and 2) I believe in the old saying that if your opponent in a debate is making a fool of himself, don’t interrupt.

I love that last line:  “Start acting like we act, and then you’ll be able to think like we think.”

Yes, I’m afraid that could happen.  I’d better go cook up a steak now to protect myself.

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46 thoughts on “Weekend Bonus: Vegan Logic

  1. Lynnsey

    I love your blog, Tom and really enjoyed your movie. I even got my husband to watch it (kicking and screaming at first) and he really gets it now!

    It would have been nice if you had given us a warning about the talking about insect eating would have been nice! Blech!! 😉

    But, most importantly, WHAT was she talking about? What was her point? I bet she would have made a lot more sense had she just consumed a Bubba Burger, just sayin’!

    I watched it twice, then concluded she had no point.

    Reply
  2. Lynnsey

    Haha, how embarrassing…I meant to type:

    “It would have been nice if you had given us a warning about the talking of insect eating! Blech!!”

    I was typing my above comment while still listening to her DRONE on, and I guess it was irritating me. Imagine that, a vegan irritating me, LOL!

    The irritation is understandable.

    Reply
  3. Ellen

    Hmm, she makes the statement that “eating meat is bad for the environment, and bad for your health”.. Two statements which are completely false.. and she thinks omnivores don’t get it? Let’s send her a copy of the Vegetarian Myth.

    The Vegetarian Myth is full of logic. Probaby wouldn’t sink in.

    Reply
  4. Diana Hsieh

    Heh. She doesn’t know it, but she’s actually appealing to the Catholic “doctrine of double effect.”

    http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/double-effect/

    “The doctrine (or principle) of double effect is often invoked to explain the permissibility of an action that causes a serious harm, such as the death of a human being, as a side effect of promoting some good end. It is claimed that sometimes it is permissible to cause such a harm as a side effect (or “double effect”) of bringing about a good result even though it would not be permissible to cause such a harm as a means to bringing about the same good end. This reasoning is summarized with the claim that sometimes it is permissible to bring about as a merely foreseen side effect a harmful event that it would be impermissible to bring about intentionally. ”

    How does that apply here? According to ditzy-vegan-girl, it’s morally okay to do something wrong (like killing animals) as an unintended side effect of pursuing a good end (like eating veggies) but not okay to do that wrong thing (killing animals) as a direct means to your ends (like eating meat).

    Of course, that doesn’t help her case. The doctrine of double effect is a handy tool of rationalization for people with ethics so disconnected from reality that they simply must violate them to live. It’s not a real ethical principle.

    (Also posted to Free the Animal.)

    Exactly. She’s basically saying, Okay, we both kill animals, but our side is morally superior because we don’t really intend for that to happen, even though we know it will.

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  5. Mike

    The problem I’ve had is that when I meat (oops) a vegetarian, their argument always comes down to emotion, not logic. Sure, they have a few statistics to throw at me, but ultimately just try to get me to stop eating any food with a face.

    I’m certainly not hearing any logic from the woman in this video.

    Reply
  6. CindyD

    I used to be a vegetarian (a vegan for a few months), but now I am paleo and in so much better health. I just reconnected with a friend on Facebook who is a vegan. It was rough telling her how much my diet had changed from when she knew me.

    I told her to read The Vegetarian Myth. I’m sure that she won’t, because her reasons for veganism are very emotional. Logic would not persuade her.

    Yup, it’s kind of a religion for some people.

    Reply
  7. TonyNZ

    This reminds me of a scene I saw the other night. I was channel flicking and landed on a show (not sure what) where they were at a restaurant ready to order.

    Guy: “I think I’ll order the lamb.”

    Girl: “I’m not strong enough to ignore that voice in the back of my head that says ‘meat is murder’, so I’ll have the chickpea salad.”

    Guy: “You’re not strong enough because you need PROTEIN. Lamb please.”

    That’s a great line.

    Reply
  8. Jeanie Campbell

    CindyD – I know what you mean! I also was a vegetarian for nearly 25 years – ugh! The odd/funny thing about the “religion” aspect is that few would ever call what they do a religion, but it is truly a “belief” system, in no way based in logic.
    Thanks, Tom, for the video – it was fun.

    My pleasure. Stumbled across it, a happy accident.

    Reply
  9. Josh Goguen

    Wouldn’t the gaining of sustenance from an animal be a better way to respect and honor it’s life, as opposed to accidentally killing one trying to harvest a potato?

    Exactly. I don’t eat meat because I hate animals. There’s no evil intent there.

    Reply
  10. Arlo

    In regards to the previous comment:

    It’s the same reason I lump “diet” in with religion and politics. It doesn’t make for polite dinner conversation (especially dinner conversation)!

    If you want to start a fight, talk about religion. If that doesn’t work, talk about politics. If that doesn’t work, talk about the proper diet.

    Reply
  11. Kathy

    Ah, yes, another vegan who has seen too many Disney productions. Yes, let’s turn cows into family pets to show them how much we value them! Of course, they’ll be eternally grateful. But how will we get Mr. Fox to not want Mr. and Mrs. Rabbit for dinner? I can hardly wait for the increase in rabbits to eat up the vegans’ gardens! Then they’ll be calling Mr. McGregor.

    It is disturbing that vegans are so insistent upon putting the so-called well-being of animals above the health of people.

    I don’t want to paint all vegans with the same brush, but I’ve noticed the PETA types in particular don’t seem to like humans much.

    Reply
  12. Todd

    I have no problem with trying to stop the cruel and ecologically disastrous practices in factory farming, and paying a little more for meat that has been grass-fed and pasture raised. The movie ‘Food Inc.’ was very effective in highlighting the problems with the system today. I do not, however, think vegetarianism is a viable solution to the problems we face.

    I’m with you. We just picked up our monthly subscription of grass-fed meat from a local farm. Costs a bit more, but worth it.

    Reply
  13. Rachel Allen

    I just blew my nose. I’m trying so hard not to think of all those precious microbes that just got flushed down the toilet with the kleenex I used. Vicious murder.

    Probably won’t sleep a wink tonight. (wink)

    But wait … if you didn’t actually intend to kill them, it doesn’t count.

    Reply
  14. Alex

    #1 – yes let’s reduce factory farming by reducing soybean/corn production and converting that over to pasture land for organic beef/pork/chicken/turkey; not going to happen because the corn/soybean lobby is WAY too powerful!

    #2 – vegans are anti-humans

    out.

    Reply
  15. mezzo

    Yeeah, eeh, the point I am trying to make is, that -giggle, giggle- yeah – I mean…

    Best proof that the vegan lifestyle turns your brain into a vegetable: something that can produce “fuzzy logic” at best. And look at that pasty face!

    I stumbled across this video and watched it twice, trying to figure out if she actually had a point.

    Reply
  16. Felix

    There’s this nice concept that the mind is made of two parts, the thinker and the prover. And the basic law ruling them is that “Whatever the thinker thinks, the prover proves.” So if you think that killing animals is wrong and preventable by a vegan diet, this is what you will see in the world. You will ignore: Animals killing other animals. Animals killing humans. Animals being killed for making organic brown rice. And of course the fact that plants react to being killed, too, even though they may not have a nervous system, thus simply drawing the line at another point.
    They think they can escape being responsible for the death of another being. Add to this the entire alleged spirituality of vegans and you’ll see where they are coming from. They try to avoid suffering and death, which is at its roots a noble cause, but it is impossible. It goes beyond “Don’t kill the chicken.”, but they don’t see it. And not killing chickens is not a good start to stop the killing, because each chicken kills a lot of bugs.
    I think the main irony is that the organic plants they eat have to feed on dead animal matter to grow in the first place. I was a vegan when I was young and stupid. Gladly I was one for health reason and dropped it once I learned to detect the idiocy of their health-claims. The ethical reasons never made sense to me even back in my vegan days.
    Humans have really lost sense of their place in this world.
    I like Anthony Bourdain’s recommendation for dealing with vegans: “Put bacon around them. It’s the gateway protein.” Maybe this can bring them back to their senses. 🙂

    That’s what I find ironic about their claims to love nature. They clearly don’t understand nature, nor do they think humans are part of nature, which we are.

    Reply
  17. SnowDog

    Actually, I think she makes a good moral argument, but based on incorrect premises.

    If the goal is to stop killing animals, then you should logically start by not deliberately killing animals. This is consistent and represents a logical connection between the means to one’s ends, and achieving one’s ends. What she doesn’t realize is that her method is inconsistent with proper nutrition, and so, her ethical premise is not designed to protect her own life, but rather, the lives of animals. She has separated her ethical beliefs with the purpose of an ethical system — which is to protect one’s life and values.

    Many people, especially those on the Left, discard the means they use to achieve their ends. They will, for instance, argue for grand social-engineering legislation, like health care, public housing, welfare, etc, while supporting the inherent violence which comes along with such schemes, like forced taxation and other violations of individual rights. To get to this point, you have to throw out the idea of ethics, altogether, else the inconsistencies become obvious.

    But most ethical vegans use logic to pursue their ethical beliefs when it comes to animals, but throw out ethics altogether when it comes to people. I don’t think they see the connection between well-intended social legislation, and the harmful side-effects which may be invisible. For instance, if I take money from you to stimulate the economy, the benefits are seen in the new jobs created, but how YOU would have spent your money, is not seen. The benefit is obvious; the harm is not.

    So I have to applaud her method, but not her conclusions.

    Reply
  18. Matt Stone

    I went vegan for 2 weeks and I’m still trying to recover. My consumption of 7 double-doubles at In n’ Out burger in 3 days helped out a bunch though.

    And I’ve got a good reasons to eat pork – it’s 98 cents a pound (call it .1 pennies per calorie), and tastes real good. Spinach is 400 times that price.

    I have fond memories of In N Out. I don’t think they’re around these parts.

    Reply
  19. Brian Mallard

    From what I have read, most vegans do not get enough fat in their diet particularly saturated fat. I have also read that sat fat is essential for the brain to function at its optimal potential. This video is an example of what happens to logic and speech function when sat fats are restricted.

    There’s an interesting question: did she become a vegan because she’s not logical, or vice versa?

    Reply
  20. JudithNZ

    Good lord, that was strange. The poor girl is barely coherent, and so languid and slow, she is probably anaemic. And what was that weird background noise? Sounded like someone practising the bassoon. Or maybe the byproducts of vegan digestive systems. I am a small-scale farmer who is strongly opposed to factory farming. I raise free range organic lambs and pigs for meat, and I like to think I treat my animals ethicly, whatever PETA may think about it!

    She’s not exactly an effective spokesperson.

    Reply
  21. rachel

    So you don’t kill mr. cow and he lives a happy life. What do the vegans think will happen when mr. cow dies? Oh, wait – you mean mr cow will die eventually? Yes. everything that is alive eventually dies. Shocking. So – after you give mr. cow his funeral and bury him in the family plot his corpse turns into fairy dust and goes to cow heaven right? Vegans seem to act like this is the case. Bugs, worms, and even the soil itself consume it for nourishment. So the cold reality of life is that regardless if YOU eat it or not, it WILL be eaten. Most vegans want to avoid thinking about the long run.

    Another thing that bothers me is that it is only a moral crime for humans to eat what they are biologically intended to eat – not lions or other predatory animals. Lets see them train a polar bear to live off tofu and soaked almonds. All that seal meat must be clogging their arteries.

    And reality is that if Mr. Cow isn’t being raised by humans for the purpose of providing meat, he probaby won’t be born in the first place.

    Reply
  22. Laurie

    In “The Vegetarian Myth”, by Lierre Keith, there is a funny, sad and illustrative anecdote. (sorry I may mangle this because I lent out my copy and don’t have it on hand to check….trying to get everyone I care about to read it) Ms. Keith was a vegan for 20 years and destroyed her health. AV (after veganism) she got a call from a still vegan friend who invited her over for supper. When Lierre arrived, the friend didn’t remember she’d invited her. Friend offered her soy milk in her tea (Lierre declined) and then said, oh yes, I remember now why I asked you over, did you say soy harms the memory? Lierre commented that she couldn’t have made this up if she’d tried.
    My new paradigm and rules to live by. Sucrose, wheat, Lipitor, soy and corn oil and low-fat diets degrade the brain and immune systems. Those 2 systems are the most complex and ANIMAL FAT dependent in the human body. The mechanism of this degradation is mostly via insulin. Insulin (released when carbs are consumed) is the hunger hormone, the aging hormone, the fat storage hormone, and the artery-hardening hormone. The proteins and lectins in wheat also add to this tornado of negative affects of insulin, as if over-secretion and the affects of too much insulin weren’t bad enough. And Lipitor just dissolves the brain and robs the immune system of its A #1 component—CHOLESTEROL.

    Wow, that is sad … and kind of funny.

    Reply
  23. Chad Wallace

    Where have I heard this before?
    Hmmm, does she have a theory about the brontosaurus? like, its small on one end, then it gets very large in the middle, and its small at the other end.

    good grief, my brain hurt after a couple minutes of this, had to turn it off!

    That’s her theory, which is hers, which is the theory she created.

    Reply
  24. Dave, RN

    I have a friend here at work that used to be a vegetarian. She finally give it up after like 10 years. She said she was just too weak all the time. Unfortunately, I have a vegetarian niece. What’s great is that she has a twin. The other twin is not a vegetarian. And yes, you can tell the difference. They are in their early 20’s now. She started the whole vegetarian thing as a young teenager. She’s now several inches shorter than her twin, and looks pale. I worry about her sometimes, but one thing I’ve found out is that you can’t argue with a vegetarian. It’s a battle of wits with an unarmed person. You simply cannot talk logic to them.

    It’s more like a religion than a logical choice.

    Reply
  25. TonyNZ

    “And reality is that if Mr. Cow isn’t being raised by humans for the purpose of providing meat, he probaby won’t be born in the first place.”

    It goes further than that. Domesticated, farmed animals are bred to be productive. They will not survive in the wild. Cows produce too much milk, can get mastitis and infection leading to slow painful death if their milking is not managed. Sheep need dagging or else their rears become flyblown. Cut short, domesticated farmed animals, if they were ever all released into the wild (aside from the whole starving due to lack of appropriate feed management for that number of animals) would probably all suffer anyway.

    It really is more of a symbiosis than predation arrangement. We have a number of endangered species of bird in New Zealand, including some kiwi. When people talk about this, I always pipe up with “We should start eating kiwi”, a phrase that is met with all soprts of reactions generally not positive. Once it has sunk in I simply say “no farmed animal has ever become extinct”.

    But seriously, it can’t taste that much different than ostrich (num nums).

    Good point. Chickens, pigs and cows aren’t going extinct. The buffalo were in danger, but that’s because idiots shot them for sport and left the carcasses to rot.

    Reply
  26. David

    “…living in this world results in some animal death.” Some? Only death by human hands is “terrible, terrible, terrible” for animals, but not if other animals are doing the deed? Perhaps some serious viewing of Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom is in order.

    Some nut-cases have actually proposed separating the predatory animals from the rest. Kid you not.

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  27. TonyNZ

    Buffalo were never farmed were they?

    Not back in the day. There may be some now. You can be if they are, the farmers don’t shoot them for sport.

    Reply
  28. Jacs

    Rachel, TonyNZ, Tom, please: that would be MRS Cow.

    Too true. I’d best be careful with the genders, or I’ll be accused of spreading bull.

    Reply
  29. Laurie

    New motto, I won’t eat anything WITHOUT a face. I will only eat things (or stuff that came from things) with a face.

    I’m even more restrictive than you. I only eat foods with a face that reminds me of Ernest Borgnine.

    Reply
  30. Auntie M

    Someone give that girl a burger–stat! I teach 12-year-olds who can create a better argument. And they generally suck at critical thinking.

    Trust me, my daughters produce more coherent arguments all the time.

    Reply
  31. Auntie M

    Right, Tom, but YOUR daughters seem to be exceptionally smart. I teach mostly sugar and starch laden couch potatoes, but their brains still aren’t quite as mushy as vegan chick’s brain.

    I do consider myself lucky. My daughter said most of the kids in her class drink chocolate milk or punch every day with lunch. I shudder.

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  32. Dave, RN

    I just learned that my sons college, The University of Texas at Arlington will start “Meatless Mondays” in their student cafeterias. It irks me because first of all I’m paying good money for the food program there, and second, why should the vegetarians be able to inflict their beliefs on my son, who by the way LOVES MEAT. Their take is to fight global warming, but we all know it’s about making more people vegetarian. My son told me that he want’s to go buy some meat and sit on the steps of the cafeteria and eat it in a conspicuous way…

    I applaud his plan.

    Reply
  33. TonyNZ

    I was incredulous yesterday when I saw a flyer from a health store. It was titled “You Are What You Eat” and was extolling the virtues of eating vegetables, cutting down on meat and taking multivitamins.

    Where I grew up, calling someone a vegetable or a pill was not particularly nice, so why would I want the be that by eating it? Also, given that I (and many other humans, I presume) would want to retain the ‘meat’ aspect of my physiology, why would I stop eating it?

    It boggles the mind that the thing could get printed as anything but a parody but… it happened.

    My wife picked up some brochures like that from a “health fair” in California. We enjoyed laughing at them.

    I think we need to create a paleo restaurant where you get to stalk and kill your own game, then have the chefs cook it up over a pit. We can toss some vegans into the mix and call them a side of vegetables.

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  34. Rishara

    Dave, RN, you know that if the school decided to have an “ALL MEAT TUESDAY” that everyone would be up in arms about it. But it’s okay to force meat eaters to suffer without meat?? That’s pretty ridiculous.

    Reply
  35. Trish

    I have never known a non-annoying vegan. They are invariably clueless white upper-middle-class people who have never experienced anything remotely resembling hardship who nonetheless feel they know everything about life and the world and must instruct you on how you are being cruel to animals by eating meat and drinking milk and wearing leather. Then they pause to cough and sniffle and take another sip of their chocolate soy milk and rummage for their hemp hoodie because they’re cold (on an eighty degree day). “I just can’t shake this cold and I took ten thousand milligrams of vitamin C every day this week!” they whine. But watch them flip out if you even slightly suggest that their holy diet might have something to do with the colds …

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  36. Wanda

    Dennis Leary had a wonderful take on vegetarianism in his “No Cure for Cancer” special. Check it out if you haven’t already… just make sure the kiddies aren’t listening. 🙂

    I’ll look for it. I’m a huge fan of his show “Rescue Me.”

    Reply
  37. ~*~ Jennifer ~*~

    I sincerely I hope that my reply does not offend anyone, but I cannot help but to respond to this post (and to all the ensuing comments). First of all, I don’t know who that ditz is in the video, but I could barely comprehend whatever point she was trying (and failing miserably) to make. In my opinion, she is an embarrassment and a disgrace to vegetarianism and veganism.

    I have been eating a low-carb diet for several years in an effort to lose weight and improve my health and energy. I had no problem consuming dairy or meat as a large part of my diet. I also included large portions of high fiber foods: nuts, seeds and low-carb vegetables. I found that chia and flax seeds made an awesome breakfast cereal and had not only high amounts of healthy fats and protein, but also were high in fiber and very low in net carbs. I was happy to discover some very good non-animal-based foods that made me feel better about living “la vida low carb.” So, I made foods like these a more prominent part of my everyday diet.

    I took up running a couple of years ago. I was concerned that because I did not “carbo load” I might not be able to keep up with other runners or succeed in this sport. Eating copious amounts of pasta, pretzels, high-carb energy bars and sugar-laden Gatorade was not on my agenda, even though this was the typical recommended diet of most runners. I considered it a challenge. “I will defy the standard logic and become a low-carb runner. ” I knew that I could still eat high fat, high protein, high fiber and low-carb and still get what I needed through that wonderful process of gluconeogenesis. It worked. I proved to myself (and others) that being a carb addict is not a necessary component to being a good runner. I have won (or at least placed in the top 3 in my age group) for most of the races I have participated in. I have proven that eating carbs are not necessary to run, nor are they necessary to run well. I started a website called “Running Against the Grain.”

    As I continued my quest for the ultimate health and nutrition, I began to incorporate more and more plant-based foods into my diet and eating less meat and dairy. After much research and personal reflection, I adapted my low-carb diet to a raw vegan diet which I have been following for about a year now. I am healthier than ever, have great energy levels and am running faster than ever. I guess (according to a previous poster) this makes me an “annoying, upper-middle-class, never-having-experienced-hardship know-it-all.”

    I find the blanket statements which stereotype and criticize all vegans to be extremely offensive. I do not criticize meat eaters/omnivores. I still prepare meat-based meals for my family. I don’t always like it, but I know it’s what they want and like. I don’t push my choices on others since this is a personal choice for me. I do like to educate people about poor nutritional choices if I think it can help them to make better informed decisions in an effort to improve their health. It’s not a meat vs. vegetables question. The single biggest detriment to our health is the proliferation of processed foods. Even in the “raw vegan” community, it is well-declared that refined sugars and processed starches are the worst, unhealthiest products you can possibly consume. For me, that is the common ground for both low-carb advocates and (well-educated) vegans. Pursing this new way of life, for me, is just taking my low-carb diet “to the next level.”

    http://runningagainstthegrain.blogspot.com/2009/04/next-level.html

    There are very inhumane practices occurring in slaughterhouses all over the world. It is simply appalling how the (majority of the) meat industry practices business. “Food, Inc.” is a very enlightening film in this regard. I heard someone say once that you cannot get healthy by eating sick animals. Plus beside the inhumane treatment, these animals are fed terribly unhealthy diets and pumped full of antibiotics and God knows what else. There are much healthier options for obtaining animals products like organic, free-range, grass-fed, etc. I propose we opt for the healthier and more humane options whenever possible. The same can be said for vegetables and fruits. Many are grown on nutrient-depeleted soil with massive amounts of chemical fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides using genetically modified seeds. I wouldn’t want to put those things in my body any more than diseased meat. Again, it’s not about animals vs. plants, it’s about obtaining optimal nutrition while still taking into regard humane treatment and environmental awareness.

    So, I urge you to please not lump ALL people who consume a non-animal-product-based diet into the same category as the baffoon in this video. We are not all uneducated airheads.

    Thank you.

    I’m curious … how much protein do you consume? Do you feel it’s enough?

    Reply
  38. ~*~ Jennifer ~*~

    I eat a lot of seeds (pumpkin, sunflower, hemp, flax, chia) and nuts (almonds, brazil nuts, macadamias, cashews, hazelnuts, pistachios, pine nuts) along with spirulina, chlorella and Klamath blue-green algae supplements, bee pollen, goji berries and *some* non-GMO organic soy products (soy milk, tofu) plus lots of leafy green vegetables. I also incorporate a lot of coconut products into my diet. I had a complete blood analysis done a few weeks ago and my hemoglobin, hematocrit and protein levels were perfect, along with all the other numbers.

    I don’t count calories (or carbs) anymore. I just eat mostly raw fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds. I estimate that I am getting at least 50 grams of protein per day. I feel (and think I look) great and have to believe that since I’m able to run 5 – 10 miles per day that it is probably sufficient for me.

    Reply
  39. Kevin

    So, now Vegans are “unintentionally” harming animals by “unintentionally” destroying small eco-systems so they can “unintentionally” plant crops?

    Makes sense.

    Lierre Keith lays it all out brilliantly in The Vegetarian Myth. Monocrop agriculture kills countless critters.

    Reply
  40. Roberto

    How about some actual logic here.

    For every pound of meat you eat, it took 10 to 20 pounds of animal feed (corn, soy, etc) to feed that animal (biologists know this – it’s a basic inefficiency of mammals). All of that feed needs to be harvested. And that kills critters.

    Eating vegan foods kills critters too, but nowhere near as many as the animal-feed industry does.

    No way around it. Veganism is the logical choice.

    Hey, here’s another logical idea: read the book before deciding you think you know what it says. She is crystal-clear that cattle are not meant to eat corn and soy, so all those “oh my gosh, look how many pounds of corn it takes to raise a pound of meat!” arguments are based on a false premise to begin with.

    Although I like your premise that killing to eat is immoral, but not if you only do it a little bit. That makes sense.

    Reply
    1. JStheguy

      It seems more likely she is now on the run from roaming bands of New York congressmen who want to destroy her and put her in a big tastey stew for being a dumb vegan.

      Reply

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