Well, 36 people answered the question of why they are or aren't vegan. That's a pretty good turnout. Thank you to all who answered.
To be honest, I was hoping for more, but the responses I did get were all civil and mostly thoughtful, which just goes to show you that vegans and non-vegans can coexist in an online public place without jumping down each others' throats.
We have honest differences, to be sure. And those differences do matter (indeed, they're a matter of life and death). But the point is that we can and do discuss these differences with each other without resorting to name-calling and/or pie-throwing. I think the hardest part of starting a civil conversation about veganism is convincing both sides that it's a conversation worth having civilly (which can include speaking openly and honestly and not stifling our ideas simply because someone's sensibilities might be offended).
Anyway, a pat on all your backs.
Now on to the winners!
(The new camera does widescreen and I haven't figured out yet how to embed that correctly, so I suggest just clicking on the video and viewing it on the YouTube page.)
So that's what eight minutes of my day looks like. If you felt rushed, confused and pulled in different directions while watching it, then you know what my days are like. Let's just say I appreciate concurrent naps.
A note on the video, we had picked names (two of the three, to be exact) one time before what you see in this video, but the camera wasn't recording when I thought it was (it's a new camera that I'm not used to, as is evident by the sound being muffled now and then when I put my finger over the microphone area). So I decided to do it all over again. The same person was picked first both times! Crazy.
And toward the end of the video I give my reason for being vegan. To elaborate, I'm vegan because I don't need animal products to live a long, happy and healthy life. Since I don't need these products, I'm presented with a choice of whether or not I should continue to consume them. I can find no good argument to cause suffering and death when that suffering and death is not necessary ... so I choose veganism.
I'm vegan because animals are sentient beings who should be extended the basic right to not be treated as things; as property. The property status that we place upon animals is what allows we humans to cause the aforementioned suffering and death for reasons such as tradition, convenience and pleasure (not necessity).
Simply and more concisely, I'm vegan because I agree with the majority of humans that it is wrong to inflict unnecessary suffering and death on another sentient being.
For a great introduction to this view visit this page and spend a few minutes reading the pamphlet.
OK! Well thanks again to everyone who answered the question. And to the three who won, Alafair, Ashlee and PL&V, just click on the "email" link on my profile page and send me your address. Then wait patiently for the goodies.
And thanks again Go Max Go Foods for donating the candy bars! You're the best.