Please tell us a little about yourself.
I have a background in web-based video. For several years I was working in the gaming industry starting and maintaining a number of successful brands and YouTube channels. I was born in Seattle and raised in the area. Right now, my primary focus is vegan activism through video, speech, and writing. After years of deliberation, I have concluded it’s the best possible use of my skills and talents for the betterment of the Earth and all of its denizens.
What lead you to veganism?
I developed severe acid reflux at age 22 (now 5 years ago) after eating a standard bodybuilder’s diet. After seeking professional help, I was prescribed medication. I chose veganism instead.
Tell us about our journey to activism?
I’ve always felt comfortable in front of an audience, cameras, interviews, etc. I’ve always felt confident in my language skills. It was a natural progression for me to use my filmmaking experience background in conjunction with my other interests to help spread awareness about veganism. I’m approaching the endeavor with a strong sense of urgency, as time is running out for humanity to change its ways. As long as more people go vegan as a result of my efforts, I will have considered this project a success.
Why are you an activist?
Our society and prevailing beliefs toward diet, ethics and environmentalism are terribly lost in 2018. We need to use our science and technology to realize what’s happening to life on Earth and how we’re unnecessarily oppressing and slaughtering our innocent relatives, then suffering ourselves as a result of walking this path as a civilization. All forms of action are required to correct our current trajectory, and it all begins with activism. If every vegan were involved in the effort of converting omnivores to herbivores every day, our chances of survival would be much greater and the future for our descendants much brighter.
What type of activism are you involved in?
Right now I’m focused on building the “protovegan” brand and spreading awareness about that term and what it means. A protovegan is the first person in a generation of vegans that follow. They were raised eating animals and decided to later in life become vegan. The work we are doing today makes a future for true born vegans living truly vegan lifestyles possible in the future. I can imagine no greater responsibility in this lifetime. I am also volunteering at animal sanctuaries, networking with other vegans and vegan brands, and generally seeking to build a momentum that will one day swell to a scale capable of influencing the world’s political systems in a very significant way so we can enact legislation including the rights of nature and its children.
What were your thoughts and feelings before your first activism event?
Identifying oneself to the society as a “vegan activist” in 2018 is a daunting task. We are generally viewed as extremist and radical. Veganism is still viewed, by the masses, as an extreme lifestyle and often compared to cults and religions, despite being founded on scientific facts, environmentalism, and ethical treatment of all beings. Relationships with family and friends are impacted by the decision, and a vegan activist is promoting the reality of our situation and what human-beings are accountable for against the overwhelming worldwide masses that are conditioned to disagree. I felt certain that this is what I needed to do, but also I often feel very alone and discouraged by the endless waves of criticism and cruelty perpetrated by my own kind. I need to further immerse myself in the vegan community wherever it thrives.
How did you feel once the event was over?
The same way I feel every time I change someone’s view toward veganism for the better. I feel energized by the very cosmos itself- a reassuring sensation that I am spending my time in service of what’s right, and what our descendants would expect of me.
How do you feel you are most effective as an activist?
In my writing and speaking ability. I have above average video and audio production skills, but as a one-man crew I am currently severely bottlenecked by the production process because of my higher quality standards. One day, I hope to share thoughts in the effort of promoting veganism far more actively than I am right now.
What’s been your most memorable moment as an activist? Toughest moment?
I don’t have one yet, because I just got started a couple months ago.What is your favorite type of activist event? For example, Cubes of Truth, Marches, disruptions, writing letters, etc.I like to make videos on social media.
Please recommend your favorite activism video/s, book/s or website/s to share?
I would have to say this Gary Yourofsky interview on an Israeli news station. Gary’s oration is top notch, as well as his knowledge and methods of persuasion. If I am able to handle myself that well in interviews, I’ll be quite satisfied with myself. Michael Greger’s presentation on the leading causes of death probably influenced my decision to go vegan more than any other piece of content.
Who are your activism role models?
Why?I’d have to say I’m more inspired by Gary Yourofsky than anyone with regards to animal rights activism. I’m also deeply inspired by Carl Sagan, Alan Watts, Robert Kennedy and Thomas Jefferson.
When you first went vegan how did you phase out your non-vegan food, clothing and other items?
I went vegetarian overnight after researching the health effects of meat consumption. It took me about a month to phase out the remaining animal products. My environmental and animal rights motivations have steadily grown over time.
Do you believe we should show children the process of how animals are turned into products?
I don’t believe we should censor the slaughter of animals to any age group. I think we’re doing children a disservice by sheltering them from the truth about animal products. As soon as a child is able to understand the concept of a slaughterhouse, they should be exposed to the reality of it. They are the truest, most authentic judges we have on the practice. Many parents may strongly disagree with this, but I feel that if those parents are going to feed their children the pain and suffering of other animals, the child has a right to know where those products come – no details exempt
What does being vegan mean to you?
Veganism is based on the belief that human beings should not contribute to the oppression or abuse of life in any way. With today’s industries the way they are, ex: avocado farming (and migration beekeeping), we are in the process of undoing cruel practices used in our food production systems. This is why I consider myself a “protovegan,” because I have plenty of blood on my hands from 22 years of eating animals. It’s impractical to live the strictest vegan lifestyle in 2018, and my goal is to make true veganism normal before I die. Honey is an animal product – that is a fact. Honey farming is also very abusive toward bees, which are animals. I eat yeast and other bacteria. If a non-vegan company wants to produce vegan products (regardless of the motivation) or wants to acquire vegan companies, I view this as a transformation of the food industries. The general population has all of the buying power – which means they alone have the ability to dictate to corporations which products are created. If we are buying vegan products (regardless of the corporation), then veganism is growing. After becoming vegan I became even more compassionate toward other humans. Once one accepts speciesism as a reality and that it is morally inconsistent with veganism, then discrimination of any kind toward other humans is instantly behind you
Is it every vegan’s duty to become an activist?
I think so. Even if it’s as little as talking to your family about it at the dinner table. Or suggesting to a friend they try faux meat and ask them for an honest opinion about it. Or taking your loved ones out to eat at vegan establishments. There is no excuse for apathy. You should feel as though the situation on Earth, the rapid extinction of life, and the way we treat animals is an intolerable situation
Are you the activist you want to see in the world? Why?
Yes. Because although I’ll never be a saint, and I’ll always make mistakes, I am genuinely doing the best I can to spread awareness in a civilized, respectful way. I treat everyone that comes out against me with respect, and I hope I always do. People won’t hear you if you greet them with hostility, or intolerance. It’s okay to be passionate, even angry, but never let that taint your message or your actions.
What is the activism scene like in your city?
Average. Seattle perpetrates some of the worst animal
What personal recommendations can you make for people to get involved in activism?
Don’t be afraid. You’re not going to be alive for very long. We very likely presiding over the final generations of humanity. We have no choice but to be active about it if we mean to fight our extinction. We are genetically programmed to do just that. It is our destiny to traverse the cosmos. Will you allow our sick agricultural practices to squander the unlimited human potential?
What do you feel is your biggest area of opportunity for growth in your activism?
I need to socialize and network more. I’d like to run for office one day and I’d like to introduce legislation in Washington establishing protections for animals and nature. Ideally, that’d be in the form of constitutional amendments
How do you balance your well being and activism?
I spend a lot of time with nature. There is no finer medicine. It helps to keep me grounded and reminds me what I’m fighting for. I also usually shoot in front of beautiful nature scenes to reinforce this point to my viewers