‘Why go vegan if plants have feelings too?’

Have you come across sarcastic comments in the likes of…‘well, a plant is a living being too, so if you’re vegan you should stop eating plants’?

I have had people bring up this question once or twice in my life, and I had almost forgotten about this argument against veganism until recently when I came across a comment on an article concerning this very same topic. Therefore, this short material is a response to such opinions, and sometimes seriously asked questions similar to: ‘Don’t plants suffer the same as animals do?’

This topic often pops up in interviews and debates, so it definitely deserves some of our attention.

‘Why go vegan if plants have feelings too?’

The following facts point out some significant differences between plants and animals:

1. Similarly to humans, animals used for meat and milk production have a well-developed nervous system.

The more highly developed nervous system an organism has, the greater is their sensation of pain. Plants do not have a nervous system and therefore do not feel pain in the way that animals do.

2. Vegetables consist of about 90% water,

which is another reason they do not have a strong sensation of pain.

3. Plants live in a dormant state.

One is in a dormant state, when, for example, they are under a strong anesthetic. They are alive, still breathing, their hair keeps growing, but they don’t feel the scalpel cutting their flesh in the same way as if they were fully conscious.

4. In many plants, especially fruit, it is not necessary to eradicate the plant itself in order to consume its fruits.

Furthermore, often it is required that branches or parts of a growing plant are cut so that it continues to live and develop. This is not the case when cutting up the corpse of an animal. Furthermore, spreading the seeds of vegetables and fruits helps grow more of them. If the fruits of a tree simply fall under it, they will rot, while its seeds will not develop because of the shade of the tree.

These are all pretty straight forward and I believe it becomes very clear that choosing plants over animals on our plates is the way to compassionate living.