Should You Be a Vegetarian?

Here is a summary of the many important reasons for switching to a vegetarian diet:

1. Concerned about health? Animal-based diets have been strongly linked to many
degenerative diseases, including heart problems, stroke, and various types of cancer.

2. Concerned about tremendous annual national budget deficits and high taxes?
Medical expenditures have soared from 6% of U. S. GNP in 1970 to 15% of U. S.GNP in 1996.

3. Concerned about animals? Over 9 billion farm animals are killed for their
flesh annually in the United States after suffering horribly in confined spaces where they
are denied fresh air, exercise, or any fulfillment of emotional needs.

4. Concerned about the environment? The production of animal products is a major
contributor to soil depletion and erosion, extensive pesticide use, air and water
pollution, and the rapid destruction of tropical rain forests and other ecosystems.

5. Concerned about world hunger? Over 70% of the grain grown in the United
States is fed to animals destined for slaughter, while 20 million people die annually due
to hunger and its effects. The U.S. is also one of the world's largest importers of beef
and fish, and these imports are generally from countries where there is widespread hunger.

6. Concerned about resource scarcities? A meat-based diet requires up to 20
times more land and 14 times more water and 10 times more energy than a vegetarian diet.
Non-vegetarian diets also require vast amounts of pesticides, chemical fertilizer, and
other resources.

7. Concerned about peace? Flesh-centered diets, by wasting land and other
valuable resources, help to perpetuate the widespread hunger and poverty that frequently
lead to instability and war.

8. Concerned about religious values? Vegetarian diets are most consistent with
religious mandates to act with compassion toward animals, preserve human health, help
hungry people, protect the environment, conserve resources, and pursue peace.

9. Concerned about convenient, tasty meals? There are many delicious vegetarian
dishes that don't involve extensive preparation or the fat, cholesterol, hormones, and
antibiotics associated with meat.

So, for our health, for defenseless animals, for millions of starving people, for our
earth and its resources, and for a more peaceful, just, and harmonious world, let's go

The Schwartz Collection on Judaism, Vegetarianism, and Animal Rights



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