About Me

My Photo
I am a politically-progressive, ethically-herbivorous anthropoid pursuing a paleontology education in the Los Angeles Basin. I am largely nocturnal, have rarely been photographed, and cannot thrive in captivity.

21 December 2010

Skepticism Leads To Animal Rights

Or so says The Pythagorean Crank. And I must confess, I agree with him 100 percent.

I used to shy away from animal rights as a justification for my veganism, too. And while there are some good non-AR arguments for veganism, none of them seem as robust to me as the animal rights position. Its logic has been inescapable to me for as long as I've been thinking critically. Indeed, it was my skepticism that led me to veganism in the first place. I have a low tolerance for sales-pitches (even though I'm told I'm good at giving them), and there are few pitchmen more vigorous than the meat and dairy industries.

Whenever I'm challenged to defend AR, I simply say, "it's just plain mean to do this to animals when there's no good reason." I find that almost always makes people think and nod their agreement, and I know of at least one person who made the plunge themselves after talking with me. I never once said anything remotely hippy, and I never will.

I'd like to see more vegans do it that way.

20 December 2010

Save Yourself Mammal!

The perfect holiday gift for the dino-geek in your family.

Catching Up

We've got a lot of it to do here. First up, I will try to complete at least one more installment of my History Of Your Teeth series. I'll introduce you to my new dinosaur friend, living out his now cruelty-free days at Animal Acres, and use that as a launching point into a new series about the evolution of modern food animals, tentatively titled "Paleontology (Not) On Your Plate."

But first, a word about my goals with this blog. Recently, there seems to have been a wave of visitors convinced that I am trying to build an evolutionary case for Man The Vegan. Of course, anyone who reads regularly -- and thank you both ;-) -- knows that's not the case, but it does raise the opportunity for some clarification.

PaleoVeganology does not seek to argue that veganism is H. sapiens' "natural" diet, nor does it accept the proposition that the so-called "paleo" diet is, either. This blog is rooted in skepticism, meaning that I doubt there is any such thing as a "natural" human diet. Evolution didn't simply design the world to suit our intestines, and many completely natural things are more dangerous to us than any synthetic food could ever be (after all, synthetic foods can't evolve defenses). Paleontology can conclusively establish the fact hominids ate meat, at times a lot of it. But that doesn't really tell us something we didn't already know, and it's hardly enough to make grand claims or establish umbrella hypotheses about.

The goal of this blog is to inform the vegan/animal rights movement with a paleontological perspective, and help us all understand the geo-biotic context that makes us neighbors, not rulers, of other species. Along the way, I'm sure, I will continue to encounter or be challenged by ghouls* of various varieties, but at this point, I am not primarily writing for them.

*Ghouls are beings who eat the flesh of corpses. Has a much nicer ring to it than "carnist," dontcha think?

18 December 2010

I'm Baaaacccckkkkk!

Just wanted to let you, my dear readers, know that I haven't forgotten or abandoned Paleoveganology. Over the next few weeks, I'll be getting a lot done here, now that I am not burdened by final exams and such.

Speaking of which, I did great. All A's!